One of the things that most people say about us millennials is our inability to stay focused on one thing.
We like to multitask. We do work using our laptops while texting a friend to arrange a dinner after work, all the while streaming videos on our tablets and uploading photos on Facebook.
I call this multi-screens, multi-tasks, multi-objectives.
Perhaps, because of this mindset, we can do anything we put our minds to, and the power of technology speeds up that process. There are no limits to what we allow ourselves to venture into. And we try to do these activities and achieve these goals all at the same time.
But the question is, are we aware of why we are doing all that we are doing?
I came across a video of Michael Jr., a standup comedian whose purpose in life is to inspire people to walk in faith. He has a Youtube show called BreakTime where he uploads short videos every 3 p.m. to inspire people.
He has a powerful video of a man who teaches music in a school. In the video, Michael asked him to sing a few notes of Amazing Grace. He sang powerfully and earned a lot of applause from the audience. During the second round, Michael asked him to sing as if his uncle went out of jail and it’s his second life. The man sang extraordinarily well, pouring his heart out. His rendition earned not only applause but a standing ovation and words of affirmation from the crowd.
Michael concluded by stating that the difference is knowing the why. In the second round, the man knew why he was singing.
How about you? Do you know your why? Do you know why you keep on going to work? Why you meet with your friends for coffee? Why you attend parties, networking events, or seminars? Do you know what fuels your heart?
I used to confuse the WHAT—the goals, skills, to-dos and achievements, with the WHY—my purpose.
I thought that the reason why I wanted to pursue public speaking is simply because I like communicating.
I thought that the reason why I wanted to get out of corporate is because I liked to create a public speaking career.
I kept ditching opportunities to grow outside of my communicating sphere because of this confusion. In hindsight, I can say that I was too focused on the WHAT, which I thought at the time was my WHY.
Eventually, when I tried to dig into my deepest motivations I discovered my real why. I wanted to inspire people to live courageously. I believe that this is an essential part of why I am here in this world.
I remember the times when I cried while watching television documentaries about rags-to-riches stories and epic love stories where the man just takes a leap of faith to confess his love to his lady.
Aligned with this new-found purpose, I want to use my talent in speaking to encourage people to live courageously. Through my stories, I want to inspire people to take that bold and brave step to reach their dreams.
When I realized this, then all my actions made sense. I can leverage my current job to inspire my officemates to live courageously.
I am now writing this book as a form of showing that I have the courage to publish something.
When you know your WHY, then you won’t limit the possibilities to WHAT you can do to attain it. The more you know your WHY, the more powerful your WHAT becomes.
Knowing your WHY can be a very convincing tool for you to draw out that courage you’ve been looking for.
Millennial, it is time to live your purpose.
KEY TAKEOUT: Do you know your why—your purpose in life? Take time to think about your why and your whats will be endless.
Coach Pat Mallari is a Manila-based life coach and author of the book DBALI: Dapa Bangon Lipad that tells stories of a Filipino in quarter life crisis. She is also a Part Time Facilitator of Personal Effectiveness at De La Salle University helping graduating college students transition from school life to real life. She dedicates her life to empower individuals to express their authentic selves courageously.
For more information on coaching and her books, visit www.patmallari.co.