• Swen Heidenreich

Consulting - A look inside

You remember why you got into consulting in the first place? Different customers, different projects, travelling, new experiences, never routine, never boring…- one, or more of these sound familiar to you? 

Well, why then do you feel so stressed and burned-out today? These things haven't change much, have they? If anything, there is more of that change and action that you once so much enjoyed. But you have changed. The truth is: As much as we need variety and change, we need stability and reliability, too. It’s another core human need. A need which may be less pronounced when we are younger. But now that we hit our mid-life point...Well, constant and fast paced change takes its toll.

So, your feelings of frustration and stress lately, are partly due to the job and the working environment you are in. After all, there is hardly another business environment which is more hectic and faster-paced than the consulting business - VUCA´s playground, if you like. Yep, that much is true.

But mostly, mostly it is YOU.

You are in this environment because you were drawn to it at some point. Your personality, your whole being was wired to seek new experiences and stimuli, new projects, interesting customers etc. You used to see opportunities where people around you only saw obstacles and challenges…This is one of the reasons why you have been so successful in the past years.

Being who you are – or have been for many years now - you are also very likely to be someone who does not pay - or has not paid - much attention to what is happening on the inside.

Easy enough to understand: you can only look in one direction at a time. Outside, or inside. 

So after years of looking at the outside - climbing the ladder and making a career -  you have forgotten to stop and rest once in a while. You have been pulled and pushed and lived the life of others: superiors, companies, share-holders, peers, staff… basically everyone else's life and mission, just not you own. 

Heck, you would not even know how to answer - if someone were to ask you today - what YOUR true purpose and mission in life is….

So, guess what I am asking you today? Yep:


And to spice things up a little further here are some follow up questions for you:

How do you want to live your second half of life? How the rest of your life? What do you want to be remembered for, once you are gone? How many people have you really impacted in a positive and lasting way?

And I am not talking about the kind of statement you hear company owners say a lot, like “people are having jobs, because of me”. Because they don’t. They could get a job somewhere else anytime. No. I am asking this:

How have YOU - and only YOU - been able to touch people, change people for the better, lift them up, supported and guided them? 

I know: tough questions. But see, the thing is this:  If you have read this article up to this point, these are the questions you are being drawn to right now. Most likely, because your self has changed over the course of the last few years.

Desires change. Needs change. Your self changes, too. So along with your self, your definition of success has changed, as well. 

Success to you is no longer what is in your bank account, it is not your house, car, title…none of these things.

So what is it now? You may not have the answer yet. But you are curious to find out.You are beginning to realize that there has to be more to life. You want to know what a really fulfilled life would feel like? A life with purpose and meaning? A life, which you cannot wait to live. Where you feel uplifted and happy, and where you lift others up?

As you are reading this, you may be getting this first rush. Ideas and hopes are beginning to materialize and surface…. You are daring to think thoughts like “What if…”  

"What if, I changed my life completely? What if, I started small….?" 

You are beginning to change your perspective. You are moving from the outside to your inside…and eventually you will look at the outside again. But when you do, it will be a completely new outside. You will look at your life in a new way. You will have a life with a mission and purpose beyond yourself.

Begin your journey of self-discovery and discover your authentic self.

Start now. Begin to live YOUR life. Today.

Be happy. Be mindful. Be yourself.


By the way, if your definition of success goes beyond a bank statement, and includes things such as excitement, fulfillment and happiness at work, and if you want to get your ticket off the treadmill and into an authentic and fulfilling career, click here (German):

About the author:

I write and speak about the "authentic self” and promote authenticity in lives, leadership and careers. I am a life-long learner and student of life and people. At the same time, I am also a coach for high performers in the consulting world, who are on their path of self-reflection and self-discovery. I am a guide on the path towards the authentic self.

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