To begin with … Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah, a Joyous Kwanzaa, and may you enjoy many Festivus Miracles in the days and weeks ahead!
(I believe that covers everyone.)
To me, it’s Christmastime and the big day is less than a week away. If you’re like most of us, your “To Do” list right now is the only thing longer than your gift list. But with days of celebration fast-approaching, along with year-end business deadlines and a busy Q1 2017 ahead, it’s sometimes difficult to disconnect and focus on matters of true significance – no matter what holiday you celebrate.
But do it!
This time of year reminds me of my childhood and family gatherings, Mum’s Christmas cakes, pudding, and the delicious potatoes she would peel and butter then roast in the turkey – the BEST way to cook potatoes in my mind. (And we Irish know our potatoes!) It also gives me the opportunity to appreciate the traditions my young family has started and, hopefully, will continue to honor for decades to come — the Elf on the Shelf excepted.
It is also a season of gift-giving.
I believe the greatest gift you’ll give to anyone this holiday season is the gift you give yourself – the gift of pausing and reflecting on not only what your preferred holiday and its traditions mean to you personally but reminding yourself why you do what you do for a living and how you make a difference in someone’s world.
TAKE IT FROM ACTOR WILL SMITH …
On a recent episode of Good Morning America, Will Smith announced a new initiative, inspired by the Hollywood film Collateral Beauty that opened in theaters last week. Smith’s project is based on finding the “why” in your life.
“What is your ‘why’? Why do you get up every day? Why do you do what you do?” he asked the GMA host. “It’s beautiful around the holidays. It’s a good time to get back to why you do what you do.”
Focusing on, and truly understanding, your “why” is priceless and can be the difference-maker between simply making a living and making a life that’s gratifying, energizing and inspiring, all at once.
Highly regarded author, speaker and business consultant Simon Sinek, perhaps best known for his “Golden Circle” concept, encourages people to “start with the why” before answering the “how” as it relates to “what” you do for a living (see link below). This allows you to reconnect with the passion that drew you toward your career in the first place — or reveals your passion has played out and it’s time for a change.
Sinek’s TED Talks on YouTube are wildly popular and consistently attract millions of viewers. It’s worth a few minutes of your time, trust me.
Start with the why!
WHY NOT YOU?
It doesn’t matter whether you’re an ER surgeon saving lives; a line-worker installing brake shoes in a plant; a man-bunned, Silicon Valley whiz-kid launching a life-changing app; or a street-sweeper working the overnight shift. It also doesn’t matter if you’re the boss, a mid-level support person, a sales rep, or a part-time admin working 20 hours a week.
You can be the very best at what you do! But before you’re able to truly unleash all your greatness, you must take steps to find your “why”.
My Christmas wish for you …
I wish for you some quality time in the coming days to sit quietly and reflect. Celebrate your preferred holiday and its traditions but also remind yourself why you got into the business you’re in. (Or why you should step up and make a change to something you truly love doing.) Give thanks for your God-given gifts, and accept credit for those talents you’ve developed on your own. Think about how what you do helps fill another person’s need state. Come to a place of knowing that what you do matters.
Why not start right now? Start with the “why”.
Take some time during the holiday season to find the “why” in what you do. You’ll either rediscover your passion … or discover it’s time for something daring and new!
Happy everything to all of you this holiday season!
P.S. Check out Simon Sinek’s insightful TED Talk Start with Why by clicking on this link