I am reading British-American author, motivational speaker and marketing consultant, Simon Senek’s book titled ‘Find Your Why’. A book co-authored by David Mead And Peter Docker. The authors make an impelling argument on how WHY is a game changer in doing things successfully, especially in business. They also compel you to think about the things you do, both big and small.
In an interview with Forbes, Docker who is former senior Royal Air Force pilot turned leadership consultant and executive coach says, “The first thing to remember is that finding your Why is a discovery. It’s not about creating anything. The discovery process starts with exploring the times in our lives when we felt particularly fulfilled, excited or inspired. They don’t need to be big events – often the seemingly trivial memory may have biggest significance for us. What they do need to be is specific. For example, we might talk generally about how we loved going away on vacation with our family when we were young, but it’s that specific year when our car broke down and we trudged for miles in the rain to get help that we remember. Specific moments in time trigger emotions and it’s those emotions that are usually linked to our values in life. When we recount several of these specific stories, common themes start to emerge and it’s these themes that point to our Why. Because our Why comes from our past and our past experiences, everyone’s Why is unique. We may feel someone else’s Why is similar, but it’s the stories behind the Why that make each unique and authentic”
In the interview, he goes on to talk about what happens when your work doesn’t match your Why. What should one do? He says that we need to build a relationship to our Why. The deeper the relationship, the more we understand ourselves and our life purpose. He also says that if you love your work, it’s highly probable that you are in tune with your Why. But more importantly to love your work doesn’t always mean you always like it. For example, we love our children all the time, but we don’t necessarily like them all the time. Yet knowing our Why provides us with a clear filter to make important choices and leads us to building on who we are when we are at our best.
Usually we have a narrow focus during life and are driven by many factors habituated over time. We often even forget what’s really important to us… what excites us, what makes us happy, what resonates with us. We also stop connecting the dots. But just a little insight, a little thought and a little feeling can take us back to our Why. We all have one say the authors and it’s no different for our work and for our lives. It also takes us on a journey where we are truest to ourselves.
Co-author Mead has worked with multiple organizations – over 80 and offers the following career advice: He says one must work for a cause, not for a company. He says it’s important to know what you stand for and the difference you want to make. Life is too short to simply clock in and out.
He also says that it’s best to be imperfectly you. Not to do things to impress others as this can get exhausting. Instead to be really good at some things, and to show up for the things you truly believe in and let the rest go.
Lastly he shares that in the world of business, we set selfish standards, we work for personal advancement even if it’s at the expense of others. It’s better to share what you know, propel others forward, and to build an attitude of serving and giving. Success should be the result, not the goal.