Element 1: The Starting Point

Let’s go over the first element to showing up in your life is the most productive version of you. Purpose. Here’s what you need to know. A Yale management professor named Amy resents he interviewed a bunch of janitors at a hospital. She wanted to know how did the janitors see their work? Now, maybe you’re thinking that’s a stupid question. Nobody gets up in the morning and thinks, okay, I’m going to get to clean a toilet today. This is awesome. But then she discovered something interesting, I’ll share with you. But first, I want to tell you about Carlton between kindergarten and eighth grade, we had a janitor in my school named Carlton, we’d see him mopping the hallway floors, cleaning the bathrooms raking the leaves, but Colton did more than that. When he’d see kids running in the hallway, he’d yell, hey, slow down. When someone fell down and started bleeding, he bring the first aid kit. And when we were learning about the civil rights movement in one of our classes, he came to our class and told us about his experience being African American in 1950s. America. But why did Carlton yell at kids running down the hallway or give a kid a band aid or tell her class about the civil rights movement? Carlton was just a janitor, right? Well, when Amy Rozanski interviewed those janitors of the hospital, she thought the janitors come to work, do their job, get paid go home. She was right. Most janitors did come to work, do their job, get paid go home, but some of them didn’t more than that. One janitor would move the artwork around in a patient’s room. That janitor believed that changing the environment would help the patient heal faster. Another gender said I’m an ambassador for the hospital, and another called herself not a janitor, but a healer. These janitors saw their jobs as much bigger than cleaning a building and they were more engaged in their work and happier and their lives. You see, we all view our work as a job, a career or a colleague. People with a job see work as a chore. People with a career work to advance and succeed. And people with a calling view work as an end in itself. They feel it contributes to the greater good and gives them meaning and purpose. The best part is that how you see your work is a choice. It’s no wonder that some doctors see their work as a job and some janitors are calling the work isn’t what gives something meaning. Meaning is created in your mind. And it must be created. If you want to feel fulfilled in your work. And in your life. It’s kind of like every situation in your life is an empty Blender of water. What gives that water flavor is what you add to the water to make a smoothie. And what food you add is completely up to you. You can add a fruit and turn the water into a delicious smoothie. Or you can add dirt and turn the water into something impossible to drink. It’s why Viktor Frankl says in his book Man’s Search for Meaning that we should stop asking the world what the meaning of life is. Instead, we need to ask ourselves. So what does this have to do with procrastination? Well, my question is, when you’re trying to follow through on something you want to do, like sit down and do that work project? What meaning are you creating, in your mind? Is this another opportunity to move closer to your dreams? Or is it another task, you just want to cross off the list? Remember, you might have believed your whole life that it’s the task, or the assignment that makes something fulfilling or meaning or important for you or not, but it’s not true meaning is created in your mind. And it must be created if you want to feel fulfilled with what you do. And if you want to be procrastination once and for all. It’s important because think about it. If you found yourself tomorrow on a mission, like a Roman Emperor venturing out to conquer new territories, how much more likely would you be to get what you want it to get Done? Done? And how much more likely would you be to feel good about doing it? element number one is purpose. And that means is that you have clear goals you’re going after? Now maybe you’re thinking but I don’t know what my goals are Brandon, how can I figure it out? Well, I found that when it comes to your goals, there are three things that make it a lot easier. First, stop asking yourself, what are my goals? Because when you use the word goals, your brain automatically starts thinking about what should I want? And then you write a whole list of things that sound good, but that don’t really excite you. So instead of what are my goals, ask what do I want. Second, make sure that whatever you decide on is something you can work on starting today. There’s a story in the book, my voice will go with you and Milton Erickson is in the hospital and the doctors tell his mom, your son won’t live until the morning Milton Erickson heard this and he said a mission for himself. He didn’t say I want to survive. He didn’t say, I want to make it out of here and make a million dollars. No. He said, I want to see one more sunrise. And he determined to make it happen. He did and ended up not only surviving but becoming a pioneer in hypnotherapy the lesson, you want to have goals you can work on immediately and goals that you can achieve pretty immediately to not necessarily by tomorrow, but close enough that it actually feels real for you. Third, make sure whatever you write as your goals are simple and clear. Most people say things like I want to lose weight, or I want to make more money. But Brian Tracy says in his audio program, the new psychology of achievement, that Imagine you’re writing down instructions you’re going to give to a factory, your goals should be that clear, and specific, so clear that you could give them to this magical factory. And just by reading them, they know exactly what to give you. So if you write I want to lose weight to the head of the factory would see that and think, hmm, so should we take off one pound? Or 100 pounds? And what do they want to look like? Any specifications about their skin how they feel, or just anything we’ll do? So how do you develop this first element purpose, here’s what to do now. Take out a piece of paper and write the date of three months from today on the top. So if it’s December 31, you’ll write March 31st. Now, right up to 10 things that you want in your life in the next three months could be in your career, your health, your relationships, keep it simple, up to 10. But less is even better. Make sure each thing you write is clear, as if you’re writing instructions for someone in a factory. Now, order those things you want in order of importance to you in circle number one, that’s your purpose. The others are your goals. And finally, check in with yourself ask does this excite me? If it does keep it if it doesn’t make changes in what you wrote or in your thinking until it does. That’s what to do now to start developing purpose in your life. We’ll build on this later but first, let’s go to element number two obsession.