How is it already August? If you are like me, you have spent much of this year in a sort of limbo. When COVID first hit, I figured it would pass in a few weeks, and all would return to normal. That didn’t happen. We are still living it almost six months later. Even when COVID is no longer a risk, “normal” has changed forever. With that said, we can’t live in a state of waiting any longer.
Did the nature of your work change this year? Did your daily routine change? Did relationships with people close to you change?
I’m not a therapist, but I think it is safe to say that most of us faced some trauma this year. 2020 has been the year of personal disruption.
I have found it critical to stay on top of things this year and have a process for doing so. It is so easy to get distracted and find yourself way off the path. If you follow my personal YouTube channel, you have seen how I am using Notion to accomplish this.
I’ve been trying to get my camera out more often. Included in this email are some of my favorite captures from the last 30-days.
Focus has always been a challenge for me, but I have clarity when I know my goals and what is needed to achieve them. To find clarity, I have to identify the following:
- Am I utilizing my skills best right now?
- Am I getting lost in my work? (In the best way!)
- Am I getting the results I want from my work?
We can easily find ourselves doing work that doesn’t utilize our skills. If you’re like me, you want to do work that you are good at and enjoy doing. We have both hard and soft skills that we need to be using, or there will be emptiness.
Do you know that flow state with work where time seems to disappear? Flow happens to me most when I am doing work I am passionate about. Passion can be an overused term when it comes to working, but I think it is essential to enjoy what you are doing and who you are doing it for.
Your work also has to have a mission (purpose) and meaning. Work fulfillment can’t only come from your paycheck, what you provide has to have purpose and meaning, or you won’t be happy in your work. A lack of passion is why you hear so many stories of people leaving their corporate job to pursue a passion.
I started this year with a vision. I even called it my “2020 Vision”, a play on words. “The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry,” as it’s said. Being able to course correct has been significant this year. You have to be flexible. The more clarity I have on the items mentioned above, the easier it is for me to course-correct without losing momentum. If I start to lose track of where I am going, I remind myself of my mission.
It is crucial to have a mission, and it should be significant. Our mission needs to be bigger than the temptations we have to slack off.
Being On Mission
Your mission is your purpose for surviving everything this world throws at you. When you are “On Mission,” you can withstand a lot. Aspects of your mission will change from time to time, but it is crucial to have a list of things that have enough importance to keep you focused and moving forward. My mission consists of the following:
- Be the husband my wife needs
- Raise children who become productive adults
- Build businesses that improve people’s lives
- Grow closer to God
- Serve people
- Explore creation
You may be thinking that my mission seems pretty selfless, but I have to be pretty selfish to stay on mission. I may go into this deeper in a blog post or a video soon.
If I could encourage you to do one thing, it would be to identify what is most important to you and create a mission. Once you do, read it daily. You will find yourself on a much clearer path when you know what your mission is.
Part of my mission is supporting causes that I know are making a difference in the world. While nobody can support all causes, here are a few that I am currently supporting.
- IJM (International Justice Mission) – End Modern-day Slavery
- Donors Choose – Impact Kids by Supporting Teachers
- Kiva – Helping People Create Opportunity for Themselves
Writing helps me think. It is hard for me to flesh out ideas without either talking or writing. If this email came off as me trying to be your coach, please accept my apology. I do, however, want to be an encouragement to you. We need people in our corner, and I want you to know that I am in your corner.
If you feel led to provide me feedback, send a tweet to @jeradhill. If it was encouraging, forward it to a friend.
Thanks for reading. I hope that you are well. I’ve been pondering this statement made by Paul Graham on his blog titled “What You Can’t Say.”
“Do you have any opinions that you would be reluctant to express in front of a group of your peers?
If the answer is no, you might want to stop and think about that. If everything you believe is something you’re supposed to believe, could that possibly be a coincidence? Odds are it isn’t. Odds are you just think what you’re told.”
Until next time,