Newsletter 645 – Reimagining Your Mission

Blake M 1In a previous blog I mentioned TOMS shoes founder Blake Mycoskie who has been described as a visionary, exceptional businessman, philanthropist and outstanding entrepreneur. When it first appeared, his book Start Something That Matters impacted me with its message of inspiring others to turn their passions and dreams into reality. Following his talk at a leadership conference several years ago I saw him sitting on the floor outside the meeting room and I mustered the courage to flop down beside him for a brief conversation.

Blake retells his fascinating story in the January-February (2016) issue of Harvard Business Review. He writes about building a very profitable company but then losing the passion and excitement for what he had been doing. He became disillusioned. His days had become monotonous. “What had once been my reason for being now felt like a job,” he wrote. He felt lost because his company—and maybe his life—had become centered on the process of making things work rather than on it’s purpose. “The excitement and camaraderie of our start-up was beginning to be replaced by a hierarchical culture.” The focus was on what the company was doing and how, with fading interest in why it existed.

So Blake Myscokie took time off from work. He reflected a lot on his life, his gifts, his passions. He looked at his mission in life and began to refine it, “reimagine it,” thinking back to what he did best. He met regularly with a coach, with friends and with leaders that he admired. About that time Blake and his wife had their first child, with the life-realignment that parenthood brings.

This whole story invigorates and encourages me. At various times my career, relationships and productivity have slid to a slow-down. The passion and excitement has faded into a succession of pressures. Quitting has seemed like a good option and sometimes (with support from close friends) that’s what I’ve done. More often I’ve bounced back like Blake, probably like many of you who resonate with these words. My life purpose, my calling or mission, has not changed much. But it’s been refined and the way I live has been updated and rearranged. This is hard work. Blake says nothing about God but I believe the Holy Spirit gives us new direction, strength and ongoing transformation.

How do you get moving again when passion fades and life slows to a crawl? Please comment.

9 Comments

  1. Three empowering commitments –

    1. To TAKE STOCK of our life
    2. To TAKE CHARGE of our life
    3. To TAKE CARE of our life

    Our life is a gift from God.
    What we do with our life is our gift back to God.

    Reply

  2. Taking time foe myself and surrounding myself with friends and family members who support me. I’m in that place right now and though at times it seems like I’ll never get out of it I am focusing on the guiding light of the Holy Spirit.

    Reply

  3. This entry resonates very much with me, Gary. Thank you for it. In the last month I have been reflecting on my response to mission and realize my need to “let go” of the many burdens I carry. The main clue to this need was in my body which had become very tense and even painful. Yet, as I reflect, I see that my habit of taking on burdens indicates a lack of trust in God, a spiritual issue. We are complex creatures!

    Reply

  4. A POSTSCRIPT FROM GARY:

    I already have been called out for a spelling mistake in my newsletter. The “it’s” in my letter should not have an apostrophe. Should have been “its.”

    I am sure everybody noticed that it’s not correct to spell “its” like I did in the newsletter. Is anybody shocked that I did this?

    Reply

  5. Several months ago, Newsletter 587, you mentioned working with a “Life Planning Coach.” Would you be willing to share who that was? I am a life coach, specializing in spiritual formation and life design, and I am at a place I would like to work with a Life Planning Coach for a season. Thank you!

    Reply

  6. HI Gary,I haven’t receive your Newsletter since March. Do you still continue to send it? Do you mind to keep sending to me?  Blessings, Sharen Winar

    Reply

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