Beyond my roster of paying clients, I deal with a ceaseless flow of entrepreneurial enquiry. Thanks to my free Clarity Couch, I have my finger on the pulse of the entrepreneurial mind.
Getting stuck making the “big decision” is the most common issue I hear.
Should I commit to this project? Should I focus exclusively on X? Is this my purpose that I’ve found, or just another faux epiphany that’ll soon fade?
One of the ideas you’re contemplating today might be the one. That project where everything clicks into place and a deep flame of motivation ignites. That fire you’ve been waiting for.
Want to know how to find it?
Finding your business soul mate
Just like in your love life, there are multiple potential soul mates out there. No one idea or project holds all the keys to unlocking your purpose and meaning. There are plenty that’ll do that.
The challenge is navigating your way through the noise of distraction; pouncing on the gold while brushing off all that isn’t.
Essentially, you’re looking for quite a few needles in the small haystack that is your brainstorm. Shouldn’t be too hard, except chances are you’ve never seen this kind of needle before.
Most entrepreneurs, unless they’re veterans with multiple home runs in their past, simply don’t know what a good idea looks like. Do you know, just by hearing about it, if a project will deeply fulfill and motivate you from start to finish?
Didn’t think so.
However, identifying these ideas can – like any skill – be learned. You simply need to know the unique characteristics that all meaningful ideas share. To reveal these esoteric secrets, we turn to the godfather of purpose himself:
Introducing Victor Frankl
Victor Frankl was an Austrian psychiatrist and holocaust survivor. His book, Man’s Search for Meaning, is mandatory reading for every therapist everywhere. It was inspired by Frankl’s survival of the unthinkable horrors of Nazi concentration camps. Entrepreneurs would do well to add it to their reading list too.
Frankl’s realization was profound: Even in the most absurd, painful and dehumanizing situation, life has meaning and thus even suffering is meaningful. His experience propelled him to develop Logotherapy – considered one of the greatest contributions to the field of psychotherapy the world has even seen.
Frankl believed that we can discover meaning in life in three different ways.
Described through the lens of The Shrink for Entrepreneurs, these three principals become lighthouses: Beacons illuminating the path to the business ideas that’ll set your purpose and motivation aflame.
The first criteria of powerful purpose is our desire to build. It’s our desire to step back with our hands on our hips and say, “I made that”.
Though this is the easiest criteria to identify and fulfill, so many entrepreneurs make the mistake of believing they’ve checked this box when they haven’t. The thing about creation is that it has a start and finish. The guy who built the Eiffel Tower probably had an existential crisis months after he finished, when he ran out of things to do.
Is your business giving you repeated, increasingly challenging, opportunity to build? Or are you likely to get stuck in a business-as-usual doldrum?
Few entrepreneurs really *get* this, over the long term. Don’t make the mistake of telling yourself “I’ve got this” while mindlessly clocking in and out.
Frankl waxes lyrical on this second pillar of meaning. To summarize, you have to find the magic in the world. You’ve got to have the encounters that take your breath away – that produce that feeling. It’s wonder, awe and gratitude all rolled into one.
Does your business give you regular access to the types of experiences that simply take your breath away? Yup this second one is difficult, but essential.
A lot of entrepreneurs feel like this second beacon is setting the bar too high. That it’s unachievable – too hard. Yet the people who *get* this, who’ve constructed businesses that feed them this magic, live more purposely and with more motivation than you can possibly imagine.
The third pillar, needs a bit more of an introduction.
I’m hosting two webinars this month. January is”Purpose & Plan” month over at Commit Action and we’re celebrating!
Our first webinar, in which I break down the details of all three pillars of meaning AND how to implement them in your life, is happening next week.
You can get access to this:
- The Purpose masterclass webinar
- The (second) Planning masterclass webinar – which only builds on the first, taking purposeful goal setting to the next level!
- A weekly personal accountability coaching call with an expertly trained coach
- The ability to Ask-Me-Anything via the Q&A system.