You’ve probably heard of the Big Five: the five strongest animals in the jungle.

The lion, known for its indomitable strength and leadership. The leopard, admired for its adaptability and keen instincts. The elephant, valued for its wisdom and excellent memory. The rhinoceros, which retains a remarkable grace despite its massive size and strength. And finally the buffalo, a symbol of community and co-operation. These animals represent different qualities and abilities that also lie dormant (or have already been awakened) in each of us.

Big Five for Life Coaching with Christine on Mallorca

What are the Big Five for Life?

John P. Strelecky developed the concept of the “Big 5 for Life”. The Big 5 for Life represent the five most important goals you want to achieve in your life – the things that are most important to you and that mean the most to you. This has nothing to do with career or financial goals, but really with the things that are most important to you.

Your “Big 5 for Life” can therefore be anything that is really important to you. Maybe you want to start a family, run your own business, run a marathon, write a book or travel the world. Maybe you want to help children in India or write a book, learn how to tie flowers or simply live a fulfilled and happy life according to your wishes. Whatever your “Big 5” are, they are unique to you and they represent your deepest desires and passions.

Your personal Big Five in Life

Your “Big Five for Life” are not static. They can change and evolve over time, depending on where you are on your life journey and what is most important to you at the time. What matters is that they give you purpose and direction and inspire you to make the most of your life.

Your “Big Five for Life” are more than just (end) goals or milestones you want to achieve. They are the expression of your inner self, your deepest desires and passions. They represent what you really want to achieve in your life and who you really want to be.

Take a little time. Imagine you can look at your life up to now like in a museum…

Your Life in a Museum

How do you feel about it?

When I watched the film for the first time, it really brought tears to my eyes. It makes us realise how quickly our lives rush past us and what is really important – and what is not. If we then reflect on the little things we spend our time on that don’t fulfil us or what we get annoyed about, even though it makes no sense at all… then this snapshot takes on a whole new dimension.

When I work with people on their Big Five in my Life Themes Nature Coaching here on Mallorca, similar thoughts and aha moments arise – connected with the feelings NOW in nature. This is exactly what makes this approach so effective.

If we spent 80 per cent of our time doing a job we didn’t like, then 80 per cent of the museum would also be filled with it.

John Strelecky, Big 5 for Life

Burnout – and the role of the Big Five in Life

Burnout – a state of physical and emotional exhaustion that is often caused by prolonged stress and overwork, days that are at least 80% filled with things that bring no joy, but also by an (additionally) toxic environment, bossing or bullying. Burnout is like “unplugging”. It comes on gradually, barely noticeable, and at some point nothing works any more.

Burnout can manifest itself in many different ways. Some of the most common signs and symptoms are chronic fatigue, reduced performance, feelings of hopelessness or meaninglessness, irritability, sleep disorders and physical complaints such as headaches, shoulder and neck pain or stomach problems. It is important to recognise these signs and symptoms and take them seriously.

But what do the “Big Five in Life” have to do with burnout?

Your “Big Five for Life” are a reflection of your deepest desires and goals. What is really important to you in life and what gives you meaning and fulfilment. And meaning and fulfilment are super important when it comes to NOT having a burnout. Focusing your time and energy on what gives you joy and is really important to you is a very important point in burnout prevention. Of course, even if your projects and topics bring you joy: repeated (self-made) stress and doing too much should also be avoided here (and this happens despite all the euphoria).

Big Five for Leadership Mentoring with Christine on Mallorca island

Big Five in Life and Leadership: A guide to inspirational leadership

The Big Five in Life are not only a tool for personal development and self-leadership, they can also be a powerful instrument for effective and inspiring leadership. It is extremely important for people in leadership positions to know not only their own “Big 5 for Life”, but also those of their team members. If you can understand what really motivates your team members and drives them from within, it is possible to create a working environment that inspires, motivates and, above all, supports them in their Big 5 for Life.

Let’s say you are the boss of a small team in a software development company. After you have clearly visualised your own Big 5 for Life since your NatureCoaching with me in Mallorca, you decide to introduce your team to this concept by holding a team workshop at your premises.

During the workshop, very individual themes emerge in the one-to-one discussions. You discover that one of your developers has a passion for artificial intelligence and wants to work in this field. Another team member wants to take on more leadership responsibility and expand their skills in this area. A third member has the goal of having more flexible working hours so that they can spend more time with their family. And another employee would like to work freelance for the company as a digital nomad from Thailand and simply spend more time with his family. And another employee would like to work freelance for the company as a digital nomad from Thailand and simply enjoy life under the palm trees.

With these – also completely new – insights, you can now create a working environment that supports the “Big 5 for Life” of your team members. For example, you could give the developer the opportunity to work on projects in the field of artificial intelligence. You could put leadership development on track for the employee who wants to take on more responsibility. And you could introduce flexible working models to allow your employee who wants to spend more time with their family to do so and fulfil your team member’s desire to be a digital nomad instead of losing them.

What do you think THAT will do to your team…!

Exactly! They feel valued and will be all the more committed to you as their team leader. By taking your team’s wishes into account, they will feel seen and recognised as human beings.

What will also happen is that each individual in the team will receive a clear and convincing vision for themselves. This in turn can be wonderfully implemented as another team workshop over several days to create a team vision and the Big 5 for the team, based on the shared values and goals of the entire team.

The “Big Five in Life” are designed for people in leadership who not only lead, but inspire. A leader who encourages their team members to pursue their own “Big Five in Life” and realise their full potential. And that is the key to effective and inspiring leadership.

I would be delighted to accompany you and your team in this endeavour. We will discuss all questions and modalities in a personal preliminary talk via Zoom.

The Big Five are not just for managers – certainly not. They are perfect for people who are perhaps looking for an introduction to their personal development – or further development. In other words, people like you and me – regardless of whether you lead other people or not. First and foremost, it’s all about YOU.

And of course – the Big Five are also a wonderful start to inspiring teamwork for teams, for sensitive companies that focus on people and, of course, for executives, managers and entrepreneurs.

I look forward to supporting and accompanying every single person. Please feel free to arrange a preliminary meeting with me.

Sincerely, Christine.