Tell Me Why? Introducing The Three Rules Of Why
Like Stephen Hawking’s Theory of Everything, which is a “single, all-encompassing, coherent theoretical framework . . . that fully explains and links together all physical aspects of the universe,” the question “why” has a similar potency.
When you ask the question why, you are in essence seeking your own personal answers in your own unique universe. In other words, you are setting aside the preconceived notions of how your world works (or how you think it works), and opening yourself up to a greater understanding of the expanded possibilities that exist for you.
I am not talking about a self-pandering “why me” lamentation. Nor am I talking about a vague search for some elusive facts or insights.
What I am talking about is turning your focus outward – beyond your present reality, to gain a better understanding of where you are now, why you’re where you are and – most importantly – how you can move forward toward your real and bigger future.
In this context “why” is the single, most powerful word in the world.
The Three Rules Of Why?
Why do I do what I do?
If you have ever asked someone why they do something, you will usually get a canned response highlighting either their reasons i.e to make a living, send my kids to college etc. or, a job description.
While this pre-programmed response is completely true, it is also completely irrelevant in terms of answering the question.
It is only when you peel back these layers of socially accepted protocol, that you will truly understand why you do what you do and then, be in the position to make a true connection with others.
So . . . why do you do what you do? Why are you in the job you are in right now?
Why does it matter to others?
When you ask – and answer the question why do you do what you do, you must then ask yourself why does it matter to others?
Given that we are in the Holiday Season, it is a question that will likely bring to mind the movie “It’s A Wonderful Life.” This is because you are looking beyond yourself, and your circumstances, to try and quantify your impact on the lives of those around you.
After all, there is a world of difference between knowing why you do what you do – and I mean really knowing it, and connecting with others on a meaningful level . . . to them.
The irony here is that you can’t answer this second question until you have answered the first. But once you do, your job and your career will take on a deeper and more powerful meaning.
Not only will you find your passion, which is the driving force behind what you do and your ultimate success, but you will also be able to discover and ignite the passion in others, be it your co-workers or customers.
Why will it make a difference in my life?
This last question is the means through which you discover the ultimate answer relating to your “why” equation.
It represents the “at the end of the day”, and “why I get up in the morning” outcome, that all of us seek, in terms of our greater meaning or purpose in both our work and private lives.
Simply put, this is how you answer the “is it worth it” question.
Remember the old Rocky Balboa quote about “every champion was once a contender that refused to give up?” It should both remind and encourage you to understand that the road to success is never a straight or direct route.
There will always be detours and bumps and breakdowns of various sorts along the way. Knowing why you do what you do, and understanding the impact it has on others, is the key to answering the “is it worth it” question.
Of course, your answer is never fully understood until you have achieved your desired outcome.
So think about your desired outcome, and envision what that outcome will look like. If said image is pleasing to you and reflective of where you truly want to be, pursue it relentlessly,without hesitancy or second thoughts.