There’s often a big difference between your answer to the question, “What do you do?” and “What do you really LOVE to do?”
I heard someone say something recently that I thought was pretty powerful. He was the CEO of a company that makes equipment that infuses fertilizer into soil (who knew, right?).
But what he does is not as fascinating as what he said at one point in the conversation. He said, “Everyone thinks I should grow this into a much bigger company, but what I really LOVE to do is invent things that help farmers grow better crops.”
Ok, it wasn’t what he said exactly that got me. It was HOW he said it: “Everyone thinks I should…but what I really LOVE to do is…”
All I could think was that I hoped he was listening to himself because that’s a life-changing aha moment if I’ve ever heard one.
Since then I’ve been thinking about how he phrased that sentence. The way he stated his desire is an excellent framework that any of us can use to create our own aha moment.
“I think (or someone thinks, or everyone thinks) I should ___________, but what I really LOVE to do is _____________.”
Sure, you could apply this to your mommy and daddy, (i.e., My parents think I should be a doctor), but it goes way beyond that. All through our adult life we are heavily influenced by other people’s ideas and opinions about our lives. That’s not always a bad thing…unless you let it distract you from your dream, your driving passion, or your superpowers (the true gifts you bring to the world).
Bosses, mentors, advisors, family, friends, coworkers, colleagues, and customers will all tell you what they think you should do. That doesn’t mean it’s right for you. Only you know that for yourself. But how do you discover what that is?
One great step is to plug your thoughts into the framework I’m sharing in this post. Give it a try:
“I/someone/everyone thinks I should ___________, but what I really LOVE to do is _____________.”
So then the next question becomes, “What are you going to do about that?”
I would really, really love to hear your version. Drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. I also want to hear from you if your answer is in the past tense, like if you’ve faced this kind of thinking at an earlier point in your life and you figured out what you really wanted to do and you did it.