That Empty Feeling

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Have you reached a high level of success but still have an empty feeling?

Sometimes fulfillment and personal gratification elude us. We strive for goals, but even when achieved, satisfaction is elusive. As author John Maxwell said: “We attempt to solve an inward problem with outward solutions.”


Inward problems that inhibit fulfillment, significance and gratification often carry common themes. These inhibitors include…


Pursuit of too many things. This leads to an inability to discern best from good – too many good things in life distract us from what is best for us.


Pursuit of self-serving goals. The pursuit of self, by self, for self simply does not fulfill and almost always leaves us feeling empty. True fulfillment comes when we bring value to others for their sake or for the benefit of the whole. Significance is found when we are valued because of the value we bring others.


Pursuit of power. Seeking power to control or to amass fortunes sadly results in empty feelings that cannot be filled – instead, there’s always a lust for more.


Conversely, if our motives lead us to gain influence for the benefit of others, or to generate wealth used to do good, therein lie paths to both significance and fulfillment.


If you struggle with that empty feeling, ask yourself a few questions:


  • Are you the same person no matter who is with you?
  • Are your decisions based on how you can give or what you can get?
  • Do you work harder on your image or your character?
  • Do you lament what your legacy will be?


Empty feelings prevail in society because people pursue self rather than seeking to benefit, uplift and encourage others. Counter-intuitive as it may seem, when we deliver value instead of striving to receive value, then we truly can find fulfillment. It is then we earn significance and achieve meaning.


Is your tank empty or full?

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