Why do we do what we do?
I have a skinny little Moleskine journal that lives in the riser on my desk, about 3″ x 4″, and in back of it is a page I call the Doom Page. This is the page on which I’ve kept a tally of the number of times I’ve been told I’ll never get rich by serving only people and companies doing good in the world. I put another hash mark on it this morning; it joins its many brethren there. Ho-hum. I keep the list as a little private joke, and because it makes me smile. (I’m big on smiling. It’s good for your health.)
It also keeps me in touch with my “Why.” Why do I do what I do for a living? Why do you? What do you want to have done/been/had when it’s all over?
Here’s my Why: I want to wake up in the morning and get to work with some of the best people walking this world. People whose minds, hearts, and feet are all pointed in the same direction, and are doing good work.
With that as my Why, the organizations, companies and individuals we work with all share something in common: In one way or another, large or small, they’re spending their life energy on work that increases the amount of good in the world.
It may be an author writing a book about the resurgence of real wisdom. An organization creating a supportive community for those who build . . . community. A coach who helps people heal themselves through writing. A consultant who wants to help develop leaders who run better businesses.
It’s hard to describe what it feels like to have daily contact with people helping others become bigger, better, healthier, happier, and more prosperous. And it’s even harder to describe why it matters so much to me, moreso than just monetary wealth.
It’s the opposite of drinking in the poisonous messages pushed by the global media machine, which collectively make you feel like we’re all going to hell sans handbasket, it is all (insert villain’s) fault, and thus the only thing worth doing is to squeeze as much wealth/power/prestige/stuff out of the earth as possible, because, well, everyone else out there is only in it for themselves. Aren’t they?
Here’s the truth: All over the world, there are people who woke up one day, looked around, and decided to become more than just an income-producing, stuff-accumulating short-timer on this rock. They decided to do something that matters, and focus on something bigger. Yes, you have to have some type of income to make it in this world, however much you’d like to have, but these people are finding ways to do that AND leave the joint a little better than they found it.
We get to work with those people, receiving regular injections of good news about community building, pioneers solving societal and environmental problems, courageous acts on behalf of perfect strangers, and hundreds or thousands of small actions taken to nudge us in the right direction. Is this for the future, for our kids and grandkids? Sure, but it’s also for NOW. For us. Because this sort of life is so much richer, and so much more fun, even if you are an introvert like me.
Technology can be a beautiful thing, in many ways. I became hooked on teaching it when I realized how much it helps good people get the word out about their unique work, their offerings, their gifts. And so we help people use digital media wisely, efficiently, and affordably, to help these good people attract the eyes and ears of the world and gain support for what they’re doing.
So I sit down in my chair, the chair from which I’m writing this post, with a smile on my face. Every. Single. Day. Most of the people I serve do the same.
We help them get where they want to go, no matter what the “where” might be. They are part of something bigger, better. And when they forget, I remind them.
Which makes me rich beyond measure.
Wanna be rich too?
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