The past five days have been rather tumultuous to say the least. And as most upheavals will do, the events have affected my personal as well as business selves. For some time now I have felt called to make a clearer statement about my true intentions for my work. I’m fortunate to be in a work setting that is quite integrated with who I am; indeed, sometimes I have a hard time separating the two. So when something is amiss in one, the other is usually affected.
Such is the case of late. I have gotten off mission with my work. When this happens my core values can slip to the sidelines. And when that happens, it is easy to feel emotionally and physically spent; simply burned out.
As I often do in such situations I had a book in mind that has helped in the past: Attracting Perfect Customers: The Power of Strategic Synchronicity by Stacy Hall and Jan S. Stringer (on Amazon). The book presents a wonderful process to build or reconnect with your work using a Law of Attraction-based business development and marketing model. In my opinion there is no better way. A bonus, the techniques can help in any area of life — business or personal.
One of the early exercises in the book, after a few soul searching questions to set the tone, results a personal mission statement. It is a surprisingly simple process. I remember a client some years ago who was astonished at just how simple it was, remarking that in just a few minutes he had a mission statement while he had been working in a group setting for the past month trying to accomplish the same.
I invite you to take a few minutes to invoke the process if are unclear in any way about your personal mission or your work mission, or if you are at all unsure of how well the two align:
First, take a piece of paper and number lines 1 through 10. For each number list of word that feels like a core value — a word that speaks to the essence of who you are, to what you value most. For example, you might choose such words as, joy, connection,learning, integrity, service, or others. Feel free to list some of these words and then add your own.
Second, circle 3 or 4 of your words — those that feel like the most central to your core values, words that really, above others, speak to who you are. Choosing is not done at the expense of the other words on your list but rather are the ones that are mostimportant for you. If necessary, close your eyes and speak each word on the list, and feel which 3 or 4 give you the clear positive visceral response.
Third, arrange the circled words into a sentence, adding appropriate filler words or perhaps some of the words you did not circle until you have a well constructed sentence. If you cannot use all of the words you circled that’s fine too! Choose the most importantones and create the best sentence you can.
Once you have your sentence, go ahead and read it over — read it to yourself, read it aloud. How does it feel? Edit as you may need to until it has a really good body feel when you recite the words.
Do the words feel like they convey your values with integrity? Do they speak to who you are? (or perhaps, to who you really are if you are currently misaligned as I was?)
When you can say a resounding YES! you have a personal mission statement!
Now, put your mission statement out to the world. Put it on your email signature. Put it on your web page. Tell others about it. When faced with personal or work decisions consult your statement; which decision aligns best, if any? Is another option a better fit?
You will certainly feel uncomfortable with this step of living into your personal mission statement — presenting yourself to the world as you really are. But remember, When you feel uncomfortable your soul is growing! Embrace the words as the best expression of who you are in this moment. And be guided by them.
Your life will transform! And as it transforms you will come to a place where the words no longer seem to fit. When this happens, simply revisit this exercise and allow a new statement to emerge as the truest representation of who you have become.
With this process in hand I can truly say that even in the most tumultuous of times it is with gratitude that I witness each new day as it unfolds.
My statement? My personal mission is to connect with others in a variety of meaningful, creative, and spirited ways, allowing for transformational alignment with extraordinary growth and wellbeing!
With Blessings and Gratitude,
from Santa Fe, New Mexico
Dr Mark Arcuri