In the Live Inspired Summer Reading Guide I included a book by Simon Sinek titled, Start With Why. It’s a blockbuster major bestseller, and I understand why (no pun intended). I use the fundamentals of Sinek’s work from Start With Why in a lot of my own endeavors because it works! This week’s article introduces you to the “cliff notes” version of this fantastic book. If you haven’t read Start With Why, maybe now is a great time to pick it up!
Last week I spent some time with my family (all 32 of us!) at the beach. It’s our annual vacation to Cape May, New Jersey, where we spend a lot of time talking, laughing, eating, playing games and reading.
This picture is of several family members enjoying the unusually warm water and rolling waves. Many things have changed over the years including the addition of new family members through marriages and new babies (this year there were two adorable babies introduced to our beautiful beach town), but the one thing that remains is our anticipation for our one week together.
We enjoy this annual tradition that was started by my parents before I was born. There is a big WHY behind the reason we return year after year with car loads of food, beach chairs and umbrellas and board games.
Our WHY is clear and it is:
- We enjoy being together.
- Our kids (the “cousins”) love it.
- We enjoy the quaint victorian town.
- We have our favorite sites to see and places to eat.
- The importance of family is our WHY for returning.
Okay, I know this may not seem that important to you, but when I look around, I see fewer and fewer families who can do this. I believe Simon Sinek may have some wise insight as to WHY some families get along well enough to vacation together and others do not. He introduces various leaders and influencers and their habits that have helped them to succeed. My personal favorite is that of COMMITMENT. Our ‘throw-away’ society lacks the stick-to-it-iveness to follow through, and Sinek addresses that to one extent or another.
- Sinek’s book lends great insight into why some leaders succeed and some don’t.
- Why some businesses thrive and others don’t.
- Why some relationships are healthy and some are not.
He introduces the readers to a few influencers who stood out and the reason they stood out was because: “They realized that people won’t truly buy into a product, service, movement, or idea until they understand the WHY behind it.”
Isn’t that just like anything we do. Most of us need to have some sort of understanding about our work before we complete it. There has to be a bigger picture. Sinek calls this the “WHY.”
START WITH WHY shows that the leaders who’ve had the greatest influence in the world all think, act, and communicate the same way — and it’s the opposite of what everyone else does. Sinek calls this powerful idea The Golden Circle, and it provides a framework upon which organizations can be built, movements can be led, and people can be inspired. And it all starts with WHY.
When I think of a greater WHY than any in all of Sinek’s work, I cannot help but think of the WHY on my heart and that is because of what Christ has done in and through my life. It’s because of God’s promises. It’s because he designed you and I for his great work. He has called us for a greater “why” than ourselves. I love how Jesus states so eloquently his very own WHY:
For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” Luke 19:10
His “WHY” was very clear and Jesus lived a life according to that why. I also cannot help but think of the Apostle Paul’s transformation and his why:
Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the sake of the faith of God’s elect and their knowledge of the truth…Titus 1:1
His why included being a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ all for the truth. He was a TRUTH PIONEER leading the way for all to have a fulfilled and complete relationship with the Heavenly Father through his son, Jesus. The Apostle Paul knew his WHY.
Like Sinek states in his book, when we know the WHY, we can make the necessary happen and it is often the opposite of what everyone else is doing.
In order to enjoy my family’s annual tradition, there is a lot of planning and preparation involved. Some of those plans are as basic as:
- Saving money to pay for our vacation.
- Reserving a place to stay.
- Accommodating the needs of various life-stages. (From infants to senior citizens; every age group is represented.)
Our WHY is apparent. We are COMMITTED to spending time together as a family and enjoying a vacation.
Commitment. It’s needed in life, in relationships and in business.
There have been many years, where we almost didn’t make this vacation for one reason or another, but our love for each other and the amazing times we have together keep us going back year after year. We are committed to our one week together, so we do what’s necessary to make it happen–our WHY is very clear.
Consider your work.
Why you chose your profession–is it clear to you? Most likely it was because you had an interest in it. You also knew that you needed to make a living. For many women, however, they are at a crossroads and are not clear on their “WHY.” Part of my own personal “WHY” is helping women better understand that WHY–your purpose; your calling; your next steps.
- Are you at a place of not understanding WHY you are doing what you are doing?
- Are you at a place of a bit of confusion as to what’s next for you?
If so, I encourage you to sign up to receive my upcoming Purposeful Plan Information because we will be addressing the factor of “What’s Next?” and offering resources to lead you in the direction you want to go. Don’t worry, we won’t bombard you with useless information every day. Only weekly inspiration and encouragement!