The “why” behind what I do.
In his book, Start with Why, Simon Sinek talks about the need to find the “why” behind what we want for our lives. I agree! I’ve found that without it, people don’t have the motivation to do the things they “say” they want to do. When our actions aren’t part of a bigger purpose, the “to do” can get lost and fizzle.
Having purpose is key. Whether it’s to live a meaningful life (mine by the way), training for a triathlon, or running a successful company with employees that care. We all were created to be a part of something bigger than ourselves. King Solomon said it this way, “God has planted eternity in the human heart.”
I’m not here to tell you which way to run, or what your company should be about– that is for you to figure out. Though I admit that’s hard for me, considering all the emptiness I found pursuing the wrong paths. My goal is to help you on your way! I will share and offer what I’m learning on my own journey both in work and personally, hopefully in a way that helps you move forward on yours.
That said, it might be helpful for you to know a little bit about me and my why. I am a coach and counselor by trade which has morphed over the years into business consulting and coaching. Twenty-two years ago I left the corporate world as a broker for Merrill Lynch to go back to school (to seminary) and get a Masters in Biblical Counseling. Don’t worry if you’re thinking that sounds a little odd. More than one person in my life has commented on the circuitous route my work life has taken. In fact my boss at the time Tom asked me if that meant I was going to be a nun. I explained that was in fact NOT what it meant, though I have a lot of respect for nuns. Anyway, let’s say I’ve had a number of transitions in my work life. But my last major transition in 1999, was into the “helping profession”. And as of the last six years, I have been consulting and coaching businesses and individuals to help develop people.
Few things in life have been more satisfying than partnering with people on their journey. To be invited into your world as you reflect and sharpen how you are living this life you have been given is one of the greatest honors. But selfishly it gives me joy and that’s why I do it. That’s my WHY.
I love the feeling of joy, I think that’s why I am an optimist, a 7 on the Enneagram, easily prone to pick up bad habits, and it’s why I love helping people. It’s why I do what I do and why I get out of bed in the morning. So to the best of my ability, every time we visit I want to leave you with one quick exercise or something to help you move forward on your journey just a little.
Today, I want you to ask yourself, “What is my purpose in life? Why am I here?” If that question is too big, “What in my week do I enjoy the most? And why does it bring me joy? What do I get out of it?”
Now– just sit with it.
Ask yourself, how the answers to those questions connect with how you are living your life—what you are actually doing. Or do they?
If you feel uncomfortable with all this, good. If you have already done these exercises, even better. If you haven’t you should feel some discomfort as you start to examine the only life you have. Socrates said, “an unexamined life is not worth living”. And I would say, let’s just start with asking ourselves some questions. One step at a time. Don’t worry, I won’t leave you hanging. We’ll pick back up here next time.