Make a Difference. Stand Up for Something!

pc: Timothy Eberly

pc: Timothy Eberly

Let’s face it: living with purpose has never been more important. From our political climate to how we approach our daily lives to the dreams we go after—it’s time to put intentional attention on what matters.

  • Not just when shit hits the fan.

  • Not when our politicians screw up.

  • Not when a school tragedy happens.

  • Not when you feel like it.

It’s time to be intentional on a regular basis and make daily decisions that lead to optimal performance, success, and overall satisfaction.

Beyond defining purpose, harnessing attention, and maximizing performance, standing up for what you believe in is critical. Now more than ever, people are connecting to what they feel is important: from our political environment to the #MeToo movement to immigration, civil rights, and beyond.

It’s no longer okay to stay silent.

How to Get Intentional

We are quickly realizing that we need to lead our lives, families, congregations, communities, constituents, schools, institutions, faith organizations, non-profits, big businesses, and startups in a more purposeful way.

  • We need to take the reins.

  • Not our teachers.

  • Not our leaders.

  • Not our bosses.

  • Us!

But what if you’re not an activist or fancy yourself a leader? So what. Each of us is here to make a personal impact in our own way. As our best selves. As our dream selves. As our authentic selves. But first, we have to get our butts off the couch and figure out what the hell it means to make that impact.

To make a greater impact, you have to show up every single day. (It’s not like last year’s New Year’s resolution that fades into oblivion after a few weeks. This is about real, effective change.)

Because here’s the thing: while we all have good intentions to succeed, to do our very best, to live an intentional life, we often let fear, loss, anger, hate, uncertainty, ego, and even pain dictate reality. We cling so readily to the daily routine and our “safety nets,” that we often miss the boat to create effective change.

  • We forget that we can lead our own lives.

  • We forget that we have an innate purpose that goes beyond work.

  • We forget that we aren’t here to get a participation trophy.

We’re here to make an impact!

Define What Matters to You

As conversations and debates take place about what matters in public forums, on social media, and by the water coolers (I know people don’t really gather around water coolers anymore, but it’s a great visual, right?), new profiles of purposeful individuals are emerging. I like to call these people Purpose Athletes, because they have a vision, an agenda, and they know what matters to them. Ask yourself. Are you a:

  • Purposeful Leader: leading others to establish a purposeful culture and movement

  • New Age Citizen: seeking to purposefully contribute to the world

  • Faithful Luminary: allowing spiritual faith to illuminate their purpose

  • Change Agent: fostering self-discovery and transformation to live a purposeful life

  • Modern Professional: committing to vocations that matter to the world

  • Family Champion: infusing purpose and values into the family for generations

No matter what category you fall into, you can own and maximize your own sense of purpose to create greater value for yourself, the organizations you lead, and the world you inhabit.

This story appeared in Thrive Global on September 23, 2018.