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People often ask the question “what do I need to do to start this new project or habit?”
That’s often the wrong the question. The more informative one is “why do I want to start?” The how-to bit is secondary to why-to.
This video discusses this and how to come up with a good “Reason Why.” The heart and mind lead the hands.
Brandon Winters says
I’ve come to believe that you simply need more reasons why you want to do something.
Identify as many as possible, instead of running through the what am I gonna do’s and all the reasons why each of them isn’t possible or you don’t want to.
Great video, essential points!
I agree. Having motivation is the toughest part, not how you’re gonna get it done. For example, if I really want to learn a second language, I’m gonna eventually learn it thru listening to CDs, watching movies, practicing, etc… it may not be efficient but chances are I’m gonna get it done since I’m highly motivated
Great video! The example of getting up in the morning is very relevant for me. 😉 Sometimes I have a good reason why, but I definitely need to be more consistent with it and make sure I have a good reason why every day! 🙂
michael cardus says
Your reason why…too often the reason why does not align with the persons values and commitments. So they must subjugate their why into the larger context of work, society, family, etc…
This why is a central driver to all productivity, and can be a tool in the box of many leaders. It takes the understanding of people various why’s – do they want more $$, time, attention, freedom, autonomy, chance for mastery etc…
Knowing your why and the why’s of others will yield great results!
Ah! I loved the part about something you can DO TODAY. As in finish. So it’s not just a thing you get to do today, and tomorrow, and the next day. But a *portion* of the bigger project that you can actually set out to DO TODAY and FINISH TODAY. That makes a HUGE difference, coach! :o)
Thanks for this and for being you, as always!
“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
I think the “why” and having reasons are surface level thoughts for what’s really going on inside. You can have a relevant “why” and good reasons, but if that deep underlying pull isn’t there you’ll keep searching your belly button for lint.
Laura White-Ritchie says
This is great Charlie and not at all what I was expecting when I started the video. There are two kinds of why. I’ve been focused on the big why…why I need my business to grow. I know we can get so paralyzed by that big why that we forget to consider those little, equally important whys.
Personally, my why is more along the lines of why I need to stop trying to get so much done between 10pm & 3am…though I’m sure if I did that I’d be more likely to get up and get to work the next day.
bodybuilding natural,bodybuilding workout says
a very true post
Shailender @ Valentine Vacation says
very true, You’re totally correct about whys & hows..
Cheryl Dolan says
Yesterday I read Pam Slim’s blog which referred to your “swallow a frog” concept. I went to bed with that intention for myself this morning. I woke up at 5:30 and by 8AM I had swallowed a frog that I had been choking on for weeks! I feel relieved, refreshed, very happy with the result of the project – and I have so much energy for the rest of the day!
Now I just watched your video – so these results above are my “whys” – and boy are they worth it. Very powerful!
Note Taking Nerd #2 says
These are some outstanding guidelines for leading yourself to do what you know you need to.
I saw this video and couldn’t help remembering some guidelines I’d posted on my site that were engineered to help the founders of small to medium sized businesses figure out what the purpose of their business.
Here’s a list of why this is so crucially important…
6 Reasons Why Purpose Gives You House Odds
1. Purpose improves your performance – It gives you the criteria to judge the effectiveness of everything you undertake.
2. Purpose attracts A-Player employees and Outsourcers – People are passionate by nature and when not stimulated we revert to boredom or distraction towards something that does offer a hit of passion. Especially in the work place. When your purpose is compelling the best employees and outsourcers want to be in your world because you offer meaning to their life.
3. Purpose deepens employee engagement and increases their commitment – Employees who work in the service of something they feel true devotion to bring the most energy and vitality to what they do. Work stops being a 9 to 5 chore to be endured so they can have money to do what really juices them. And it becomes a source of fulfillment and satisfaction. Your purpose can tap into the hearts and minds of your team and make the impossible, possible.
4. Purpose drives successful innovation – Without a purpose, a business invents more than they innovate because there’s nothing driving meaningful innovation. Innovation is something new that succeeds while invention is merely something that’s new. Innovation for innovations sake often results in wasted time. Innovation designed to meet business’ purpose is where meaningful progress is made.
5. Purpose gives your business flexibility – Products, services and practically everything else in your business eventually changes. If your purpose is clear you’ll know when it’s time to shift direction, change what you offer or your strategy. The only thing that won’t change is your purpose which keeps you flexible enough be ready for what the market tells you they want.
6. Purpose builds your brand – Your clearly defined purpose let’s people pigeon hole you into a position in their mind. It tells them how they should see and feel about you. If you leave this definition up to them, you might not like the results.
Thanks Charlie for sharing your wisdom on the power of purpose with everyone here. You’re a force for good and I look forward to coming back to see more of your videos WITH the bloopers left in. 🙂
such a great reminder for helping yourself out of stuck. thank you!
Jonathan Mead says
I’m definitely guilty of setting out to create new habits without a clearly defined reason why. In my terms, that’s when it’s just a “good idea” and not compelling enough.
Everything has to start with why, why does this even matter?
Thanks for the great reminder Charlie.
Alison Golden says
Very interesting, Charlie. I hadn’t seen it quite like that before.
I also appreciated your vlogging – I also watched your ‘Why I’m scared to start vlogging’ post – because I have the same concerns.
One of my tactics to keep myself motivated is I picture a scene that sums up the biggest pleasure that I will get from achieving that goal and everytime I wake up, I think of this picture so Ill become motivated to my work. 🙂