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Article No.: 11-7

Article Title: Getting to the CORE© of it all

Author: Guest Columnist Tina R. Macon, MA, CEQ

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“My life would be fine if”. . .  “I don’t understand why I can’t get out of this rut”. . .  “Things just never seem to go my way on the job”. . .  Have you ever had these feelings or thoughts and couldn’t seem to figure out what the REAL problem was?  Most of us deal with symptoms and seldom with the root cause of an issue. 

This article will help you gain insight into the key components needed to unlock the CORE© of the issues needed to move forward in your career as well as your life.


“Katie’s Dilemma”

Katie has worked hard her entire career and has earned a reputation for being honest, knowledgeable, trustworthy and fair.  She takes pride in how she handles problems and seeks to establish solid relationships with those with whom she comes in contact.  Katie’s current situation finds her in an environment that is very stressful and counter to her personal value system.  She is part of the Senior Leadership Team, however, she can’t seem to “get into the club” of the all male dominated structure.    She believes her role as the senior human resources officer is to help establish, develop, and implement the strategic direction of the company and along with her counterparts help the CEO run a successful company.  Katie begins to notice that things aren’t “feeling” quite right across the organization.  She also begins to see signs of isolation, demonizing of individuals, and a decrease in morale across the organization.  In fact, she begins to experience these feelings within her role as well.  Katie wants to understand what is happening to the organization as well as to her career.  The approach outlined below is designed to help her get to the CORE© of the issue and begin to develop a plan of action to move forward, not only in her career but in her life!

Basic Needs

All individuals have basic needs that serve as a balance barometer ensuring that life values are being met.  They include; belonging, fun, power, freedom, and security.  Each of these needs, when identified, connects to a “feeling” and manifests itself in positive or negative ways.  For example, the basic need of belonging involves the desire to be loved, sharing, cooperating, and “fitting in.”  When an individual uses statements like “you let THEM do it” or “how come you didn’t tell me what you just told them?” may be an indication that their need to belong is not being met.  Keying in on phrases such as this can allow you to acknowledge a person’s perception and educate them on your intention during the conversation, thus, creating an opportunity for agreement and the chance to de-escalate a potentially volatile situation.  Katie‘s feeling of isolation is a clear indication that her basic need of belonging is not being met in her current situation.  In order for her to establish balance and harmony in her life, Katie must gain a clear understanding of the importance and impact this basic need of belonging has to her self -regard and overall happiness to her life.  She must get to the CORE© of the issue in order to move forward.


CORE© is the process by which we attempt to restore harmony to our environment and personal belief system.  This is achieved through multiple means of communication, taking ownership of one’s emotions, being willing to step out of one’s comfort zone and take some risks, and empowerment through the mastery of owning your feelings and emotions.   

Katie can gain clarity and begin to develop her plan of action by beginning the process of understanding how her basic needs are /not being met in her current situation.  She needs to establish a base line of what is important to her in her career as well as her life and begin to align the two so that when she is out of alignment she can easily identify what is out of whack and what course of action is needed to get back in sync.  Acknowledging that it is natural to want/need to feel a part of a group that you have chosen to associate with is a good first step.  Understanding your internal cues and how to manage your emotions when you experience a violation to your basic needs is the key to getting to the root of the issue.  CORE© is a step-by-step process to identify, understand, and regain control of your career as well as your life.

To find out more about CORE© contact Tina Macon at

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