Posted by: emilyosburne | June 4, 2009

Define Fulfillment

woman drinking coffeeIt’s 8:00 AM and all over the world, women are going to work, taking care of children, planning for their day and chugging mocha choco whatevers.  In the next twenty-four hours, some of those women will enjoy immense satisfaction in their work.  They will feel a sense of accomplishment and meaning.  They will feel connected and purposeful.  In short, they will experience fulfillment in their work.

On the other hand, countless women will feel just the opposite.  The tasks they complete will be very similar to the ladies in Group #1.  They are washing dishes, wiping faces, composing e-mails, and managing To-Do Lists that are never done.  They laugh, love and accomplish goals.  On the outside, they look almost exactly the same as the other women, but there is a significant difference.  For some reason, this group is not experiencing fulfillment.  They have a deep feeling that something is missing, that something is not quite right, but they cannot put their finger on it.

In fact, we have all been a part of Group #1 at times and Group #2 at other times.  The goal of this research project is to learn the difference between those groups and unleash the power of true fulfillment in every aspect of our lives.  I have to admit that I have no idea where this research will lead, but I thank each of you for participating in the journey with me. 

To begin, I want to come up a good definition of ‘FULFILLMENT’.  What does it mean to you?  Your definition can be one word, one sentence or an entire paragraph.  Don’t bother with Webster, Google or Jeeves.  Just look into your own heart and let us know what it says.  How would you define the word, FULFILLMENT?


  1. For me, fulfillment is a state of mind, one that awakens my senses and allows me to experience joy. This happens each time I walk my Yorkie and Schnoodle at the Lake County dog exercise park. In this safe place (no leashes required) my dogs run joyfully from tree to tree, sniffing other dogs, with their tails wagging merrily. Their joy is contagious, and I forget about schedules, to do lists, and goals. I feel the cool fresh air on my skin as I walk on shady paths and I feel relaxed and happy and I feel fulfilled.

  2. Fulfillment, to me, is being completely satisfied and content with life just as it is. Not that you cannot dream or have goals, but that you do not need anything more to be happy.

  3. Fulfillment is the result of an individuals life so rich and rewarding in the most important areas. Fulfillment broken down looks like fully filled= a state of being filled up emotionally, spiritually, relationally etc.. For each person who is totally fulfilled, the overflow must run off somewhere- most likely into the lives of others. A person experiencing fulfillment exudes a presence of achievement and purpose that has TRUE meaning. It is a sence of being completely filled up in your spirit to the point of your cup running over.

  4. I feel fullfilled each time I help someone else. Friends often joke with me, telling me that I can never say no to anyone. I suppose that is true – I am a self-proclaimed “yes woman”. Helping others makes me happy and it is something I do every day of my life. Most importantly, I try to always follow the leading of the Holy Spirit by being a positive influence on other people. Secondly, my two young children and loving husband are under my helping hands. Helping my family with everyday tasks can sometimes feel mundane and underappreciated, but at the end of each day it makes me fullfilled to see them happy. Finally, helping others outside my family brings fullfillment to my life because it helps me feel needed and appreciated. I am a strong believer in using the gifts that God has given me. I am talented artistically and enjoy helping other people with projects involving art. Go figure…I am fullfilled by painting ladybugs on a chair for a friend, loaning someone $1 for the vending machine, preparing dinner for my family, and folding my husband’s underware just the way he likes it!

  5. Fulfillment is very complicated to describe when you are a perfectionist and want everything just right. Have you ever noticed that nothing is perfect and things will never be just right? It took me a very long time to accept that it’s alright not to have everything just perfect. Fulfillment comes when you look beyond those lists of “to-dos” and the many things you believe could make everything in perfect harmony around you. Instead you see those glimpses of simple rewards that have been right under your nose the whole time. Those belly-laughing, family-fun, unexpected moments are what truly define the crux of your fulfillment. I have learned that you can’t let your preconceived notions of what fulfillment is interefere with true and genuine fulfillment at it’s best. God’s plan for fulfillment in your life is mind-blowing and will trump anything you could have tried to create for yourself.

  6. Fulfillment is waking up with a blank slate every morning and being excited to fill it up with the activities of your life, whatever they may be. Fulfillment is not the absence of hardwork, or necessarily the attaining of goals. It is finding a measure of peace and contentment in the journey you’ve set, when you believe in what you are doing and where you are going.

  7. I agree with Erica, in one word I believe fulfillment is satisfaction. Being satisfied in every moment, not mourning over the past or constantly yearning for the future. IN the moment.

  8. In a worldly aspect I remember that fulfillment is for me was to figure out what fulfillment I wanted…no kidding. Never REALLY did anything. I would sit and dream and wonder and try to live my life in my little, safe and secure 3 pound universe. Never really going anywhere, didn’t have to worry about how I would get somewhere, I’d just lay back and dream it out. L.A.Z.Y. Well we know what God has to say about being lazy.
    Anyways come to find out that, once I was saved by Christ and God’s mercy, my fulfillment wasn’t for me to figure out! We are told to be filled with God’s spirit and joy in bringing Him glory in all that we do. Also, everything that we do should be done in prayer and all of our decisions should be brought to Him in prayer. So to the NEW me, the purpose-filled me, I will delight in my fulfillment of Christ! He makes me full…I search no more.

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