Dr Ross McKenzie - Entrepreneur - The Startup Business

Why You Need A Purpose

Why do you need a purpose?

This question has been debated, analysed and discussed for thousands of years across all cultures and civilisations. Some of the greatest philosophers and religions have sought to answer this seemingly simple, though quite complex question.

In a more contemporary sense, many of us have experienced those days when it was more difficult to get out of bed, perhaps feeling there was no sense of urgency to start the day. While others, are there ready to go.

Why is this?

Well you could call it personality, you could call it attitude or motivation, but for me it comes down to purpose.

Simply, it is the question of whether my purpose today is so compelling that it actually consumes me. It energises me, it drives me to not only step up and overcome the challenges, but it drives me to become a better person so that I can make an even greater difference and contribution to those who I interact with.

Over twenty years ago, I was fortunate to become familiar with Anthony Robbins and attended his early seminars. This is where I became familiar also with the author Victor Frankl who wrote Man’s Search For Meaning. Based on Frankl’s actual experiences of being a prisoner of war, he took it on his own, to journalise his experiences of that time, so that these observations and insights could be later shared for all of humankind. In essence, Frankl gave himself purpose when one could forgive him for letting go on life.

For me, his book had a huge impact because I started to see how much of what prevents us from truly becoming great, that is, living a purposeful life, is what lies in our own minds – our belief systems and daily thoughts.

I have also realised that these self-beliefs are real for many entrepreneurs. However these same entrepreneurs went on to launch their startups regardless. When I have spoken to some of these entrepreneurs about this, what I hear is that their fears have been overtaken by their compelling reasons to forge ahead, regardless of what people may say, or their own negative self-talk and doubts.

Now obviously this could be a reckless behaviour and that is why a degree of “business smarts” also need to be present. The great news though is that the “smarts” can be learned or mentored. Whereas the hard work is with the mind.

For me, I refer this to “re-wiring my brain” and today there is an overwhelming body of clinical research that re-enforces the fact of how possible this is to re-program ourselves to new thoughts, behaviours that lead onto to different outcomes. This is very exciting and what’s even better, a lot of this research is becoming more main stream for everyone.

So while I have not necessarily answered the question “Why we need a purpose”, I hope I have presented the suggestion that where ever you are at right now it is where you are because of your mind-set.

To change, you need to re-wire your brain!