Request a Complimentary Team Assessment

Use the Four Stages of Fulfillment Framework to Fulfill Your Life’s Purpose

Use the Four Stages of Fulfillment Framework to Fulfill Your Life’s Purpose
Share on LinkedIn Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share by email

This week, we wrap up our series on the Four Stages of Fulfillment with a 30,000-foot view of how understanding this framework helps us create the thriving lives we all desire.  


As Stephen Covey suggested in The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People, #1 is “Be Proactive” and #2 is “Let’s Start with the End in Mind.” The study of human nature reveals that we possess a deeply meaningful Vision connected to creating a safe and secure community for ourselves and those we love—but it requires maturity to reach Stage IV Fulfillment (Creating a Better Tomorrow).

What might that Vision look like for you?

Vision seems to be difficult for many to differentiate from their Purpose, which is what they are doing every day. The deeper understanding of Vision comes to us when we are mature enough to ask ourselves, “What difference in the world will I have made because I existed?” When we reflect on our lives we can see a future difference we could make with purposeful action.

What might your Purpose be?

To create a better tomorrow, we need to care for and serve others today—this is Stage III Fulfillment (Benefiting Others). We help them learn and grow to generatively create a collaborative community that is helping create a safer and more secure today and tomorrow.

What are your competencies in your area of expertise and in your relationship building?

To serve others most effectively, we need to be good at what we do, building our competencies in our areas of expertise.  We need to compete to learn and grow and collaborate with others so we can find transformative solutions.

Are your mind and body getting the attention they need for long-term sustainability?

The healthier we are, the better we function mentally and physically, and the greater our ability to compete to learn and grow. Caring for ourselves is at the base of the pyramid; the stronger our foundation, the more effectively we can move up the stages of fulfillment to live the thriving lives we desire.

I was blessed to have Gene Power, the inventor of microfilm, as a mentor. Leaving after one of our meetings, I asked Gene, then ailing in his last years, “Can I do anything for you?” I will never forget his response: “Fritz, what I need, you cannot help me with.”

In his book Give and Take, Adam Grant captures the transition from Stage II Fulfillment (Learning, Growing, Competing) to Stage III Fulfillment (Benefiting Others) in the simplest terms: In general, takers reside at Stage II, and givers reside at Stage III.

We possess a bias under pressure to:

  1. step up to create a better tomorrow, like soldiers who risk their lives, or
  2. step down, as seen in those with addictions, for immediate gratification.

As we mature, we are more likely to seek the satisfaction that comes from delayed gratification, like our children doing well, versus our younger days, when we could not wait to be satisfied, wanting rewards we had not earned.

As you continue to work on your goals and objectives for 2024, we hope this series has been helpful. Build your base from the bottom up, making it strong enough to propel you effectively on your journey to your deeply meaningful Vision.

Challenging Questions

  • What deeply meaningful Vision might you possess that can guide your life’s decisions, both at work and at home?
  • Can you think of examples when you have strategically sacrificed short-term fulfillment—typical of Stage I (Meeting Our Primary Physical Needs) and Stage II (Learning, Growing, Competing)—to realize a deeper, more meaningful success in the future?
  • Are you honoring each of the lower stages, so you have the foundation in place to realize the deeply meaningful Vision that provides energy for your thriving life?

#FourStagesOfFulfillment #Purpose #Vision #TheShiftFromMeToTeam