When’s the Right Time to Tap Your Sweet Spot of Engagement?

I recently wrote about making maple syrup here. There is a very specific time for tapping maple trees. It depends on the trees storing excess energy in the fall as starch and then resting for months until the warmth of the sun turns that starch into sugar – the tree’s ‘sweet spot’.

Laura and I talked about this, curious as to how humans figured out how to make maple syrup. Who figured out that a certain tree’s sap was sweet and good to drink? Who experimented with other trees – pine, hemlock, oak? Who decided that it would be a good idea to boil it down and see what happened? And for how long? How did they know it was done? How did they know the ‘sweet spot’ of perfect maple syrup?

We’re like trees too. We spread our roots of interest out and draw energy up from our passions and give them out into the world.

And…we’re not. Trees gracefully follow a rhythm of a year, a season, a revolution around the sun. We’re blessed (and perhaps cursed) with making conscious decisions. Our movement may not look as graceful and as ordered as a tree.

But we are like nature, because we’re part of it. Nature encompasses a dizzying array of approaches to living well…as do we. Different plants bloom at different times in the year. Different animals mate and give birth at different times. Right now owls are sitting on eggs, the snow falling on their still wings. And the witch hazel is still in blossom – the last to blossom from last year.

Our sweet spot comes when passion, play, purpose and persistence meet and we have the natural energy to live in this wonderful place. To have the energy to turn stored energy into sweetness one must have rested well.

Perhaps you’ve rested well this winter, listening to what tempo you work best in, in winter. Perhaps this is your time to release the waiting energy into a new project.

Or perhaps modern life has not let you rest as much as you want, and you have a little ways to go before you can energetically live in your sweet spot of engagement. It doesn’t matter – the witch hazel isn’t deeply upset it’s the last to bloom. Who cares when passion, purpose and play meet compared to anything else?

What’s most important is that when we’re ready we let that process happen, create the best possible conditions for the sweet spot of engagement to be tapped, and persist in doing the good work of gathering, boiling down our raw energy into good work we gift to the world, to make it a little sweeter.

Quixote Consulting helps teams find the sweet spot of engagement with strengths-based training and team building.

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