This blog post is Part 14 in a 14-part blog series on discovering and living your mission. (If you missed the previous posts, you can find Part 1 here.) We have covered a lot of ground in the past several posts. First, we talked about how to discover and clarify your purpose. We talked about the importance of finding your “why.” Your “why” motivates and drives what you do. It’s the reason you wake up each morning.
After talking about your purpose, we moved on to developing an area of expertise. We talked about the importance of clarifying your “how.” Your “how” is a roadmap for how you specifically will work toward fulfilling your purpose each and every day of your life.
Your mission falls at the intersection of your purpose and expertise. Your mission lies at the overlap of your “why” and “how.” Identifying both of these parts is essential to your mission and calling. If you don’t have a compelling “why,” you will lose motivation. You won’t have the energy to work hard every day. You will lose heart. On the other hand, if you don’t have a “how” that works for you, you will be ineffective. You will apply a lot of energy, but you won’t experience much success. You are trying to fit a round peg in a square hole.
But if you have a compelling purpose, and you are working toward that purpose in your area of expertise, an amazing thing happens. You have a clear motivation, and you are effective in applying your time and energy. You experience success, which motivates you to engage in a deeper way. You experience a consistent sense of meaning from applying your time and energy toward a greater purpose in a way that works. You are in your sweet spot.
Take some time to reflect on what you have learned about your mission and calling. First, what is your purpose in life? What is your “why?” Write a few sentences about your “why.”
Second, what is your area of expertise? Maybe you aren’t quite there yet, but that’s okay. Developing an expertise is a process that takes time. What is your “how?” Write a few sentences about your “how.”
Finally, create a mission statement by putting the two parts together. You can use the following template: My mission is to [say a few words about your purpose] through [say a few words about your expertise]. For example, my mission is to help others experience grace (purpose) through writing, speaking, and teaching (expertise). Write down your mission statement and post it on your bathroom mirror, or somewhere you can see every day. Keep your mission statement in front of you. Check in with yourself regularly about your mission. How well do your daily activities line up with your mission? How could you adjust your daily activities to better line up with your mission?