Create a Vision Bigger Than You (365 Days of Spirited Living – DAY 193)
“You don’t deserve a point of view if the only thing you see is you.”
Most of us are good at setting goals, but lousy when it comes to accomplishing them. Whether it is finishing college, learning an instrument, or developing a business, we are good at starting things but not finishing them. One of the reasons this is the case is because we lack persistence.
We may start out being extremely excited about a new venture or possibility and have a great deal of confidence about the journey, but somewhere along the line we run out of gas and just don’t get to the finish line. We don’t prepare ourselves mentally for the obstacles that we will inevitably face. So we fail and don’t recover and thus don’t give ourselves another chance to reach our goals.
One of the ways that you develop persistence in life is to create a vision that is bigger than you. Have you ever wondering why people are more likely to do their best when someone is watching? Or why we dress up for dates and social events? Or why some people are more likely to try new things if they have an audience? The reason is because they have something on the line.
People are more likely to persist when they have something important to them on the line than if they don’t. Without a vision and purpose that is bigger than you, you will quit at the first stages of uncertainty and difficulty. You will inevitably get defeated, but you won’t know how to bounce back. If you’re doing something just for yourself only and you fail at it, you more than likely won’t accomplish that thing.
On the other hand, when you are accomplishing something for someone else or for the greater good (something bigger than yourself), you are more likely to overcome obstacles and recover from defeat. The pressure that comes with accountability and responsibility will weigh heavy on your conscience and it will push you and pull you further along than a vision or purpose that is self-centered.
Let’s say you want to get a good education for the benefit of your family. You want to learn as much as you can so you can get a good job and be able to help your parents and siblings. You’re more likely to persist at getting that degree because your family is on the line. You want things to get better for them and so you are willing to fight to make that happen.
Let’s say you are a detective and you have a difficult case that you are trying to chase. The family members of the victim is hurting and deep down you feel their pain and anger. You are more likely to keep chasing that case until you get some solid answers and evidence for the attorneys and prosecutors to convict the perpetrators because those family members are on the line. You’re doing it for them, not for you.
Shifting from a self-centered purpose or vision of life to one that is bigger than you will affect what you do and the way in which you do it. You will begin to focus on what other people will get out of it instead of how hard it is or what the risks are. Self-centered thinking leaves you stuck and often keeps you back from reaching goals that you have set. But when you make your life about other people, you stand a better chance of reaching your goals and obtaining fulfillment and happiness along the way.
“People that know they are important, think about others. People that think they are important, think about themselves.”
— Hans F. Hansen