"People who have a good job always know 'how', but people who know 'how' and 'why' have a great career". To me, and the rest of our competitors, this saying couldn't be more true. It's one thing to know "how"; any coach or boss can tell their staff how to do something, the staff just has to follow their direction. However, for those who want to be a long time leader, or have long term success, it's crucial to understand both "why" and "how".
Think about it, your "why" (in anything) is what initially intrigued you to say "I'm going after this no matter what". It's what originally got you interested in pursuing that idea, that job, that person, or that task. It's what initially made you look at something and think "this is going to be me one day, and I'll stop at nothing until I get it."
However, I'm noticing that as people get deeper and deeper into their craft it slowly starts to fade. It slowly starts to lose its flavour and almost becomes dull; as time goes on the "why" gets weaker (sometimes). So how do we stop this then? How do we make sure the "why" is always burning or always pushing us? It's a simple concept, but one that I feel is very overlooked. I feel it's something that's not given enough attention and something that I want to address. It's what creates the foundation of your competitive edge and your ability to push yourself beyond any limits.
I'm going to explain exactly how to find your "why", and more importantly how to sustain it. If you want a long term, successful, career you must know your "why".
FINDING YOUR WHY:
1. The first thing you have to do is take yourself back to the time you originally found out what you want, and why you want to go after it. As simple as it sounds, so many competitors don't do this. It has to be the moment you knew that that you were going to become resilient at achieving success; the moment that you understood what you wanted to go after with the highest intensity possible.
2. Secondly, you must be able to connect it with a vision. Why do you want to do what you have to do? What's the vision? What's the future? Where do you want to end up in the next 5, 10, 15, etc. years? It's just as important to know where you're going as it is to know where you started.
3. Finally, make sure it's meaningful to you. I hate seeing when others are doing something for someone else; that's the first way a "why" burns out. I'm a huge believer in "sharing the wealth" and doing things for others, however sometimes you have to be selfish - especially when it comes to setting yourself up for success.
MAINTAINING YOUR WHY:
1. Don't be afraid to alter things. One thing I have to mention is that your "why" can always be altered. Let me give you an example; when I used to play soccer my original "why" as a kid was because I wanted to be a player on the Italian national team. As I grew older my why changed to being a pro on certain teams, then further changed into being a pro on certain teams and making my family proud. The root of my "why" was always the same; to become a professional soccer player. The only thing that was altered was adding more side pieces; it's like adding seasoning to a delicious dish. Your "why" can evolve and have great aspects added to it, just make sure that the root is always the same.
2. Continuously visit the original moment you knew "why" you wanted to achieve something great. This is a crucial step that many people forget; you must be able to constantly visit the origins of your "why". You must be so connected to that one moment that it allows you to relent toward your goals at all costs.
3. Don't mistaken a tough time for a weak "why"; be a realist. Don't be the person that thinks just because times are tough that they can't achieve what they want, or that they have to change pathways. Don't be the person who thinks that tough times only happen to them; be a realist. On your journey to success you will always have tough times that make you push and pull in many different directions. Just don't mistaken this for a weak "why"; don't panic, instead recognize the situation.
Your "why" can make or break your foundation of mental resiliency; those without a proper "why" need to find it and make it the centre piece of their pathway to success.
Wishing you the most success,