Why do you do what you do?
Growing up is something else! You notice how time passes by so quickly and wonder if you and your peers have the same 24 hours because for some odd reason, they seem to be moving on with life. You realise you have yourself to blame if your life does not turn out the way you would have desired it to. Adult life is definitely no child’s play (excuse the pun!). Another wonder about growing up is what would you be remembered for, or are you even living the quality life God designed for you to live?
One of the questions I don’t like to be asked is “So, what do you do?” I always feel like how I respond to that question, determines what the person who asked me thinks of me. More than anything, I don’t like asking the question because what someone does, is not necessarily who they are. As I build relationships, it is not what you do that matters to me. What matters is, who are you? , And WHY do you do what you do.
WHY DO YOU DO WHAT YOU DO?
When I took a break from blogging and decided to go to school to perfect my writing by doing a copy writing for brands course, one of the chapters I did was, the importance of asking the question “why”. Why advertise? Why that approach in your content? Why choose to dress the way you do to represent yourself as a brand? Why is the big question.
Knowing why you do what you do helps you make the impact you desire to make and fulfill your purpose.
But the question is why do I do what I do? Why am I a blogger? Why do I keep the friends I keep? Why PR? Why do I believe in God?
· Why is the first question to ask yourself:
Why did you choose the career path you chose? Why are you settling for less? Why do you keep the friends you keep? Why do you write, sing, or teach? It is important for every year or every 6 months to pause and reflect on where you are with your life goals and be honest with yourself as you answer your whys. It is as important as well to ask your whys before you do something major that will impact your life.
Late last year, B and I did an exercise. We individually wrote down: where I don’t want to see myselve in 10years time. After writing those down, we then wrote what is it that we are going to do, to make sure we are not where we don’t want to be 10 years from now. I would like you to do this exercise when you have time because it can serve as a guideline to answering some of your whys and move you in the direction of doing things intentionally.
· Who do you do it for?
Are you doing it for people’s approval? Your spouse? Your family? Society? Social media?
It is important to evaluate who you do things for. Most people hate their jobs, but they can’t resign because they are bound to their salaries or are bread winners at home. Others do it for their leaders, because they are afraid to disappoint them. It is scary to realise that even in a time we live in of freedom and choice, that some human beings still do things because they are comfortable in that space. The thought of doing what they love and failing is scarier to them than just settling for where they are.
Another scary pattern I have seen is that of people doing things for their leaders’ approval. You end up not being able to make a decision for yourself but allow another person to dictate and choose for you. At times, you don’t need peoples support, you don’t need peoples approval and you don’t need people to make decisions for you, this includes your mentor/leader. Seek advice but make the final decision. But even if people don’t approve, it doesn’t mean you are heading for disaster. Do it for yourself. Do it for your legacy and stop trying to conform to people’s plans for you.
· Don’t do it because you can, do it because you want to!
One night as I sat with B, he said something so profound. “I don’t want to do things because I can, or for people. It is time I focus on myself and do what I want, because to me, what's important is, making an impact and knowing that I will be remembered for something.” Maybe all you have done is do things because you can in the name of humility and starting small, but somehow, that’s where you have been all your life and you are getting tired of doing things because you can. Start somewhere. Start from knowing what you want to do and start all over. Next year this time, you will be glad you started today. You are never young or old to start all over.
One of my biggest fears is getting to heaven and God saying “My beloved, you have done well. You really did your best. Look at that corner, all of that belonged to you. I gave 3 talents, and you only focused on one talent. If you used all three, these are some of the things you would have received whilst still on earth, but don’t beat yourself up. Nonetheless, you have done well good and faithful servant.” God being God, He never condemns, but I still desire to die empty. Die knowing I did what I needed to do. So ask yourself, why do you do what you do? And start building your future from there.