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I'm just a girl in the world.. that kind of likes to write. Mom of 2 teen girls & work as Talent Attraction & Marketing professional. Oh, & I'm addicted to my phone, Social Media, HR/Talent Marketing & Caffeine... you can learn more about me at www.linkedin.com/in/theonecrystal

It Starts with One… Purpose

Right now, it’s a little before 8am and I’ve been up for close to 4 hours.  I’ve “touched” 79 people between twitter messages, replies, responding to emails & Facebook messages/posts.  I’ve left 32 voicemails; 18 of which are returning calls & have had 9 conversations.  I’ve started the Asian-Inspired Skewers that we’ll be serving for dinner marinading in the Sesame Ginger sauce I made this morning. (1)  I’ve set up two lunch appointments for next week, confirmed a request received for a date & scheduled a Coaching session for a friend of mine. (2)  I’ve got a training session during my normal lunchtime; so, I’ll meet a friend of mine up at the gym for our “lunchtime workout” shortly before my behind can apply for its own continent code. (3)  And this is all on my first cup of coffee… 😉

Wednesdays are busy days for me; but this is not outside of the norm. I’m not Superwoman; but a lot  of this doesn’t feel like work because… for me, it’s all about Relationships.  You could say that connecting w/ people, building relationships?  That’s part of my purpose.  I did a personal inventory, of sorts, about what matters to me many years ago and then built my life around those things.   My relationships, my career, my outside activities/association involvements?  They all align with those things that matter to me and help me work towards the achievement of my purpose.  I didn’t look for all of that to define me; rather, I defined myself first.  Which is probably why I frowned a bit when I pulled this article up from Forbes:  “How Can I Find a Career That Gives Me Purpose?

It’s not a bad article; but the author never outright explains your Career? Is NOT What Gives You Purpose.  It’s hinted, it’s implied, but this is one of those things that should be shouted from the rooftops.  If you’re looking for your Career to provide your purpose; you’re likely to be sorely disappointed.  Furthermore, I think it’s why as a Recruiter, I received so many calls from disillusioned, confused professionals.. people who got everything they wanted professionally to find it wasn’t really what they needed.  Your Company can’t provide your sense of purpose; no matter how fantastic it may be.  But, it can accentuate the purpose you find for yourself.  So, instead of looking for the cool, philanthropic company that cares today and ditching it tomorrow because as it turns out, you aren’t in it to save the world?  Try this instead:

Find YOUR Purpose & Discover Your Mission.  Here’s how:

1.  Do some brainstorming.  Ask yourself these questions and do some word-associations to find the answers:

     a) What do you think are your super powers? (aka:  what do YOU believe you do well)

     b) What have others recognized as things you do well?

     c) What’s important to you?

Now take the answers from those 2 questions and make one word list.  How many of those words/phrases have similar meanings?  If there are any, then try to see if you can’t come up with one word or phrase that covers them all… think of that phrase as the ‘umbrella policy’ with all the other words as riders underneath it. 🙂

2.  Now that you have a consolidated, streamlined list… prioritize it.  A big part of the reason I think so many of us don’t have a honed sense of purpose is we don’t prioritize that which is important to us.  You’ve got your list of abilities and what matters to you… so… put a sense of order to its importance.  Number it up, my friends – from least to greatest.

3.  Look at your list.  It’s a nice mix of topics, subjects, things, people who are important to you & your natural proclivities and abilities.  Now take a moment to ask yourself, “Does this cover what I’m passionate about??”  If not, then ask yourself, “What ARE you passionate about?”  Write that down.

4.  You’re ready to form your purpose by integrating your ordered, consolidated phrases with your passion(s).  Work those together to form a sentence or two.  Here’s mine to use as a pattern:

Crystal Miller exists to foster relationships; connecting people together w/ myself & others to help them improve their day, interests, relationships, careers, businesses & lives… and in the process, bring a little sunshine to others. 

That’s my purpose.  Write Your Purpose Down.  Let it sit for a few days and look at it again.  Does it still look right?  Work with it until it does – no more than 20-30 words or so.

3.  Once you have a written purpose; you can use that to evaluate pretty much your entire life & make sure the things you’re engaged with align with that purpose.. rather than being things you fell into.  That might mean you have some changes to make in life; but when you do, much of your tasks stop feeling like ‘work’ & you can accomplish So.Much.More.

Here’s to finding your own purpose… let me know if I can help. 😉


(1) While talking to a friend of mine in England about #TChat tonight. 🙂

(2) This? Is HILARIOUS to me – I’m so not Dr. Dating but I do totally get how girls think… ’cause I am one.  So, sharing some insights with a friend  who needs some help w/ his game.  I do this w/ a lot of my guy friends, come to think of it.

(3)  Actually, is there such a thing?? :p

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