Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it…
A friend of mine posted this quote from American clergyman Howard Thurman on Facebook the other day:
Don’t ask what the world needs.
Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it.
Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.
I’ve read this quote about 30 times already and every time I’m amazed by how powerful and intrinsically true it is. It’s closely linked to a lesson I shared with you from my overseas sabbatical, which was to aim right first and then aim high. The bottom line is to know who you are, what makes you feel fulfilled and go for it.
I caught up with a friend and ex-colleague of mine yesterday. She’s been questioning her career a lot over the past few years and she announced to me over lunch that she had (pretty much) decided to take the brave step of quitting the security and prestige of the corporate world to pursue her true passion in the cycling industry. I was so pleased to hear the excitement in her voice, see the sparkles in her eyes… She really is coming alive and it’s refreshing and beautiful to witness. It has taken her a lot of introspection to get to that realisation (and there’s still more to be done), but the end result will be an enjoyable career and, most importantly, a happy and fulfilled person.
As we were about to leave each other, feeling her uncertainty about the legitimacy, timing and announcement of her decision, I shared with her Thurman’s quote and said: “Make decisions that make you happy”. Her response was a big, genuine smile…
Are you creating a path for yourself that truly makes you come alive? If not, what decisions do you need to make for this to change? What gives you inspiration, motivation and will? What is your definition of success? How do you measure success on a daily and annual basis? What makes you want to jump out of bed in the morning, no matter what? What is your personal mission?
I hope I’ve encouraged some most important self-reflection…
Til next time, happy decision making!