What For?

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I’m reading, Start With Why By Simon Sinek and it triggered why the why is so important.  The why isn’t simply a reason to do something, it’s about who you are.  It’s a lifestyle around the person you want to be or say you are.  Yes, for some this means having a particular car or wearing particular clothes.  For others this is their reason for being.  Who they are allows them to see questions in their field others wouldn’t think of and it allows them to see the solutions as well.  Sinek used the example of when railroads dominated the country.  It was the premier way to travel and send goods and services as well as send communication.  But the railroads viewed themselves as simply being in the railroad business.  Sinek poses the question, “What if they had thought of themselves as being in the mas transit business?”  They would have seen other opportunities and perhaps have not been replaced by other means of transport like the plane.

Sinek does a great job of tying the practical/literal/business world to the personal/emotional/inside world.  He talks about the purpose of any business or the goal of any leader and the clarity needed to fulfill that purpose.  It’s about the feeling generated from being that person. So we are talking in slightly more scientific terms about spreading the light.  This is about igniting that spark in others simply by being who we are.  Our why always starts with being of service and using our gifts to the highest capacity.  Diane Rogers calls that bringing your best self to meet their best self.  When people match that energy and have an aligned purpose or goal, there is nothing that stops the magic from unfolding.  But the reason behind it is key.  We have a choice about the energy and the intent we bring to a room.  It doesn’t simply happen.  Sometimes it feels that way, but we can always manage our emotion/reactions and shift what’s happening around us.

Knowing who we are, what we value, who we want to be, and identifying how we live up to those things makes all the difference in the world.  We can’t say we are a writer and never sit down and do the work.  We can’t say we care about people and do things that hurt them.  We can’t say we accept people as they are in the midst of trying to change them.  But when we show up with clear intent and match that intent with our actions, the world opens up to us.  And, quite frankly, it opens the world to others as well.  THAT is why the why is so important.  There are infinite possibilities in the world, in the universe and we are but one of them.  We have the opportunity to try and fail and try again at expressing our purpose.  But that begins with knowing ourselves and our values.  We are given a guide to that and that’s knowing how we feel and how to moderate that so we know when we are aligned.

The why isn’t just about finishing a task or creating a product and being done.  It’s about caring how the work impacts those around us.  It’s adapting to what will be best for people in the respect of enhancing your gifts, not changing who you are to fit in.  When you can bring your gift out and that brings their gift out, then you are in a state of absolute flow.  Knowing when to pivot comes naturally and you don’t become like the railroad Sinek talks about.  Your way of thinking and living never becomes outdated or outmoded and adaptation becomes effortless because it isn’t about getting something done, it’s about creating a new way of being.  The why is the deepest expression of who we are made real.    

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