Work Happy Now: Interview with Karl Staib


Our guest today, is Karl Staib from Work Happy Now. Karl used his coaching skills to help me work through an issue last year. I think of him both as an expert in his field and a personal friend.

Hire Karl for Superpower coaching

What is the mission of Work Happy Now?

The mission for WHN is to help people unleash and leverage their superpowers within their career. Too often people lose passion, focus and stop using their strengths at work. I hate to hear stories of people who hate their jobs. It makes me want to scream, "It doesn't have to be that way!"

If someone isn't happy they need to leverage their superpowers so they can do work that they love. Building a great career takes time. It's about being dedicated to growth at every stage. 

How does your new (product, program…what shall I call it) Fear to Fuel fall in line with your mission?

Fear has played a huge role in my life. I held back from doing work I loved because I thought it was the smart choice. I lived for a paycheck and the weekends. I was nuts. I realize that I can have my cake and eat it too.
It was hard work to get to my present position, but coaching people with their careers energizes me. I'm happier now because I'm doing work that aligns with my superpowers and values.

I created the Fear to Fuel e-course to help people embrace this fear and learn how to use it to improve their career. It's a work of love. It's the best part of creating something that aligns with my values. I probably learned just as much from e-course as the people who bought it. 

What is your best tip for turning fear into fuel?

When you are afraid of something it usually means that you should move toward this thing. It's pent up energy that needs to be unlocked. For example I was deathly afraid of public speaking, now I get paid to talk to people. It's beautiful.

I'm no longer afraid of giving a speech or a workshop. I do get a little rush before I talk to a group, but I enjoy this feeling. Some people call this fear, but I like to think of it as a sign that I'm doing something that energizes me. 

What motivates you and inspires you?

Wow, so many things. My curiosity is a superpower that I constantly feed.

I'm inspired by:
  • Love in all forms

  • Teaching people how to make the world a better place through their work

  • Connecting with new people (I actually enjoy marketing. When I stopped
    thinking of as finding new business as marketing and just connecting with people my attitude changed. I stopped pushing for sales and just cared about solving people's pain.)

  • Dragon Flies (I can watch them all day long.)

  • Hiking, and also, I come up with my best ideas when I'm walking a trail with my dog

What is one unexpected thing that has happened to you in the last year?

I unfortunately found cancer in my right testicle. It still weird to write that. I'm lucky. I caught it early and I should live a long time barring anything crazy happening to me.

I really do feel fortunate. Cancer has taught me many lessons that probably would have taken 20 years to learn. I stopped working so hard to get to point B and enjoy the journey more so much more now.
I know we've all heard that metaphor over and over, but it really didn't sink in until after dealing with my cancer. 

If you had to choose your best method to grow your blog quickly …excluding great content what would it be?

Connecting with other bloggers. Links are the gold standard. If you can encourage other bloggers to ask you for interviews, link to your blog posts, and help guide you, you'll grow much faster than most other bloggers. The biggest part is giving as much of yourself as you can – comments, links to other bloggers, asking for interviews, etc.

Tell us about your one sentence journal.

My one sentence journal is one of the best tools I teach my clients to use on a regular basis. The concept is simple, every single day write an entry of what happened in your day and how it made you feel. Most of my clients 1 sentence journal usually ends up being two to three sentences. At the end of every week they review and write one thing they did very well and one thing they need to improve on.

The reason this helps my clients and myself is it helps a person see the patterns that occur throughout their week. These patterns dictate a person's happiness. The more they can improve these bad habits the happier they will become.
Photographer  healingdream


Karl Staib is a career coach who helps people leverage their superpowers! If you enjoyed this interview, you may want to check him out and join his free 9 Part E-course to a Happier and More Successful You.


Check out my article, "4 Steps to Overcome Blogger Burnout and Rediscover the Joy of Blogging," at Virgin Blogger Notes.
What is your biggest struggle at work? How have you managed to stay happy? Please leave a fabulous comment below!

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Andrea DeBell - britetalk February 22, 2011, 8:26 pm

    Hi Tess and Karl,
    Beautiful interview. I really love the idea of turning fear into fuel. Brilliant. We carry way too many fears with us. If we could really transform all these fears into fuel, we’d have more fuel than we’d know what to do with it. I like your idea of confronting the fear. What I also do is surround the fear with love, have a loving attitude towards what cause us fear. Fear and love cannot co-exist. When one enters, the other has to leave the premises.
    Thanks for the inspiration. Loving blessings.

    • Karl Staib - Work Happy Now February 22, 2011, 8:52 pm

      Hi Andrea,
      Fear was always a thorn in my career until I began to use it to help guide my decisions. Fear is just a way to show us how much something matters to us. When we embrace that fear with love we can transform it into a compass for our actions.

  • Mike February 23, 2011, 5:05 pm

    Hey Tess!

    Nice post! I love the one sentence journal concept! I believe it’s important to acknowledge and celebrate your successes, and that’s an amazing way to track them! Thanks for the entry!

  • Little Lessons Under the Big Sky February 23, 2011, 9:35 pm

    What a thought-provoking and wonderful post. Thanks Tess and Karl!

    It is great to hear success stories from people who have gone through the process of facing their fear and been enlightened. Karl, it is wonderful that you had the courage to face your fear of public speaking, and I think it is great that that is now part of your career! What a great example.

    Thanks for sharing this.

    • Karl Staib - Work Happy Now February 25, 2011, 8:11 am

      My fear of public speaking wasn’t easy to embrace, but once I learned that my fear was only helping guide my choices that’s when I knew that I needed to tackle public speaking. A whole new world opened up. That’s why I teach people to use their fear to fuel their choices.

  • Angela Artemis February 23, 2011, 10:10 pm

    What an inspiration you are. I’m in awe of your wonderful attitude in dealing with your illness and how it changed your life. I’m really intrigued by the idea of the one sentence journal too! I’m not sure I could stick to one sentence though. It’s pretty hard for me to stop once I have a pen in my hand!

    • Karl Staib - Work Happy Now February 25, 2011, 9:29 am

      My one sentence journal usually ends up being 2-4 sentences. My feeling is that as long as it gets you writing don’t be strict with the outcome.

  • Alex Blackwell | The BridgeMaker February 24, 2011, 4:14 am

    Hi Karl,

    I love the ‘fear to fuel” concept. Typically, our fear is powered by significant energy. When we can harness that power and then turn it in something that is positive and sustaining we see our would begin to change.

    Thanks for providing the interview Tess.


  • Megan "JoyGirl!" Bord February 24, 2011, 7:16 am

    Karl, so good to read your interview here! (Thanks, Tess!) Imagine if there was more passion in the world, in general? Certainly starting with work would be huge. It takes so much of a person’s day (for many people). I think the work you do is admirable, and necessary. People need to know that they can be excited about everything they do in life, not just “the fun stuff.” Work can be fun!

    And I love what you said about marketing — how it stopped feeling tough once you relaxed and let the joy of connecting with people take over. Awesome!

  • rob white February 24, 2011, 7:42 am

    Dragon Flies…? Ha ha ha I love that! That alone is million dollar tip. Thanks for the interview, Tess. We don’t have to complicate our thinking to understand the truth about your authentic nature. Simple words & concepts are often offer the most powerful solutions.

    If most folks learned how to convert their fear into fuel they would have enough power to light a city! … great concept

  • Robin Easton February 24, 2011, 8:36 am

    Hi dear Tess and Karl,

    It is is amazing to get to know more about you Karl. You are an incredible soul. Not only filled with vibrancy, enthusiasm, but also with great courage. I love what you said about fear. I REALLY relate to that. YES!! That was a powerful turning point in my life when I learned to use fear as fuel. It made all the difference in my life.

    Facing our fear is like stripping the bars from our prison, one by one, until there are no more bars and no more prison. It doesn’t mean that we may not experience fear again, but we embrace it as part of life, something to “fuel” our journey closer to Life, closer to vibrant living, closer to our true self.

    I loved when I reach a point where I knew fear wasn’t something to be got rid of or boxed away, but something that I could use as fodder for exultant growth.

    Thank you dear Tess and Karl, this was beautiful

    • Karl Staib - Work Happy Now February 25, 2011, 9:30 am

      Thanks Robin! We definitely need more people who follow their passions. You’ve come a long way in your journey and I look forward to seeing what great things come in the future.

  • Joy February 24, 2011, 9:10 am

    Hi Tess,
    Thank you for the gift of this interview.

    Hi Karl,
    Thank *you* for the gift of this interview! What speaks loudly to me is when you feel fear, it is your sign to move toward that (rather than away from as mainstream society does). In my life, when I am most hesitant to step forward, that is usually the very step that changes my life in positive ways! Your story is inspiring and encouraging! And a reminder to keep allowing my own dreams to become reality much as I guide others to do!
    Much peace!

  • Peggy February 24, 2011, 1:17 pm

    Hi Tess and Karl!

    My question to Karl would be: what do you do when the corporate culture is filled with lack of trust, fear of conlict, lack of accountability, and is concerned more with margin than actual productivity?

    Mostly rhetorical.

    I leave the toxicity tomorrow…for good…and couldn’t be happier 🙂 I will be stepping forward into the work that matters most to me. And I finally get to give it my full and undvided attention!

    Great interview Tess! Thanks for sharing Karl with us!

    • Karl Staib - Work Happy Now February 25, 2011, 9:32 am

      Looks like you are doing a great job answering your own question. Get out and find a place that meets more of your values. Good luck with your new career and keep following your passions.

  • Evita February 24, 2011, 1:46 pm

    Hi Tess and Karl

    How wonderful to see the two of you together!!! Tess great questions to showcase and share more of Karl’s awesome work!

    Karl way to go in all that you do by helping people achieve more out of their work life and hence life! And I am so with you on those dragonflies…. I could watch them for hours! And up here we have every size and color it seems to keep me busy 😉

    All the best to you Karl with continued success!

  • Joe Wilner February 24, 2011, 2:44 pm

    Tess and Karl,

    Great interview! I love Karl’s focus on using strengths in our work. Ultimately, when we can uncover our strengths and start using these everyday, we have found a calling, which probably isn’t much like work at that point. It’s all about self-awareness of what we love and do best. I also believe in transforming our fear and emotional energy through pushing forward, seeking growth, and being creative. Thanks a lot!

  • Lisa Stevens February 24, 2011, 6:24 pm

    Tess and Karl,
    Interesting enough, last night I published a list of things I won’t be doing when I leave the cube. I had written that list some time ago in one of my more desperate moments. I published it mostly because I realized there are a lot of people out there that have these thoughts during their workday and I wanted to connect with them, to let them know they are not alone.
    What struck me the most as I re-read my list was that within the words that compiled my list of cube complaints were my values – only flipped around as complaints. For instance, when I listed having to finagle to get an afternoon off with my son, I can turn that around and say I value time with my son. How do I build a life with more of that?!
    I think it is important when we are not happy at work to look at our complaints for the hidden values and strengths that are not present and find a way to bring more of what we love and value into our life. Sometimes (okay many times) this requires facing fear but know that you are heading towards a more true life.
    Happiness lies therein.

    • Karl Staib - Work Happy Now February 25, 2011, 9:36 am

      Yes! You said that very well. Complaining isn’t always a bad thing because it shows us what we need to focus on. By reframing the complaint to help guide you to spend more time with your son, that’s a great use of turning your feelings into actions.

  • George in Toronto February 27, 2011, 8:37 pm

    You’re right, a little fear can be a great motivator, instead of a paralyzer. Thanks for the inspiring interview.

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