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The highest reward for a person's toil is not what they get for it but what they become by it.
-- John Ruskin


Daily Motivator Special Feature

Five key stages of fulfillment

by Ralph Marston

Chart - increasing energy levelsFulfillment is a process in which you move yourself to a higher level of energy. It’s not the situation that determines your energy level. It’s you. The level of positive energy with which you live is your choice in any given situation. It helps enormously to visualize and understand the process, to feel where you are and to see where you can go.

At the lowest level of energy, there is pain. It is a choice, but it is more a choice of omission. You are choosing not to choose. It feels like the world is inflicting pain on you, and yet that’s just because you have not expended any energy to rise above it.

With a little more energy, you feel need. You feel the need to get away from the pain of your low energy level and to move toward a higher level of experience. Moving a little higher on the scale is desire. You have the feeling that you must do something. Now the energy of empowerment is starting to take hold.

As you progress beyond raw desire, you start to gather the resources and call upon the abilities you have to make a positive difference. You get yourself to the point where you can indeed get it done, you can indeed move solidly toward fulfillment.

Then comes action. This is where you actually do it. You make the effort, and persist in doing so. Your level of energy is high, and you are moving further and further away from your original state of pain. There is still some frustration and conflict because you are not totally where you wish to be. Yet the goal is in sight.

As you continue taking positive action, and then as you move beyond it, you reach the highest level, which is a level of peaceful being. There is no more striving. You are the fulfillment you seek. Your joy and fulfillment are authentic and indisputable.

This pattern repeats over and over again in your life. Something comes along to which you initially react with pain or dismay, confusion or frustration. Then you make the choice to transcend it, and work your way to a higher level of energy and awareness in relation to your particular circumstances.

As you move through life’s various challenges and opportunities, be aware of your energy level. Ask yourself where you are in the process, and know that you can move on up to the next step. Your awareness and choice to move forward can make the process much faster, so you won’t spend a lot of time stuck at low levels of energy and effectiveness. Accept where you are, see where you’re going, then make the commitment to get yourself there, and you will.

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