“Outstanding people have one thing in common: An absolute sense of mission.” —Zig Ziglar
By Elizabeth Stincelli, DM
You Are on a Mission
Maya Angelou told us about her mission, “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.” Whether you have given conscious thought to it or not, you are on a mission. Others come to know your mission by watching your behaviors. Your mission serves as your guiding light. It helps people understand who you are, what is important to you, and what you want to accomplish. It guides your values, vision, and goals. Make sure you are following your mission by design and not default. Give some thought to the following factors.
Simon Sinek explained, “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” Your “why” is as important to you as it is to others. Your “why” is the foundation with which your decisions and actions are based. Make sure you have given it some real thought. What is important to you? Do you understand why you’re doing what you’re doing? Are your words and actions in line with your “why”? Your “why” provides the underpinning for your mission.
Lou Holtz said, “Ability is what you’re capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it.” What is your motivation? Our dreams come true when we are motivated enough to take action. What do you want bad enough to put in the hard work necessary to achieve or acquire? Why is it so important to you? Knowing your personal mission will provide you with motivation and strength to keep you going when times get tough.
Tony Robbins tells us, “One reason so few of us achieve what we truly want is that we never direct our focus; we never concentrate our power. Most people dabble their way through life, never deciding to master anything in particular.” Identify where you are focusing in every area of your life. Where is your family focus? Your educational focus? Your community focus? Your career focus? Identify where you are, where you want to go, and where your focus needs to be to get there. Your mission should guide your focus.
Jan Brewer stated, “My mother always told me that as you go through life, no matter what you do, or how you do it, you leave a little footprint, and that’s your legacy.” Intentional or not, you are leaving a little footprint. What would you like people to associate with your name? When you have a clear picture of the legacy you would like to leave you are more engaged in creating it. When you live your mission, you create your legacy.
What is Your Personal Mission?
Viktor E. Frankl understood that each of us has a personal mission when he said, “Everyone has his own specific vocation or mission in life; everyone must carry out a concrete assignment that demands fulfillment. Therein he cannot be replaced, nor can his life be repeated, thus, everyone’s task is unique as his specific opportunity to implement it.” You are important. Your personal mission is important. Your mission should emphasize who you are not just what you want to accomplish.
Jan Bruce explained, “Purpose is the thing that will keep you afloat no matter how the tide turns.” You can’t build something meaningful without a sense purpose and a mission to guide you. Your mission serves as a moral compass to help you make the right decisions about what to do and why to do it. Remember, you are on a mission. Make it a good one.
© 2014 Elizabeth Stincelli
Elizabeth Stincelli is passionate about recognizing and inspiring the leader in each of us. She is the CEO of Stincelli Advisors where she focuses on helping organizations engage employees and improve organizational culture. Elizabeth holds a Doctor of Management degree with an emphasis on organizational leadership.
Learn more about Elizabeth by visiting her website, stincelliadvisors.com and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.