Identify your purpose in life. When you know why you do what you do, your ability to excel is likely to come naturally.
For example, many business leaders go through a mid-life crisis. Many felt they should have become a manager when they grew up.
When this happens, they experience this classic mid-life crisis – the feeling of wanting to give up their leadership roles and stop doing what they love.
Instead of crying and giving up, they gain a purpose in life. They reconnect with the ideals they initially set out to achieve.
They re-define their purpose, and a new purpose emerges: leading.
Many professionals experience a mid-life crisis but never return to the root of their passion
How do you know when you have experienced this mid-life crisis and never returned to your original purpose?
If you don’t know your true passion, think about this: If the top 5 things you want to achieve in life are to retire on a tropical island with your family, become the best in your field, live a healthy and long life, visit your great-grandchildren on their wedding day and travel the world, then you are at risk of a mid-life crisis.
This is the ideal time to re-evaluate your purpose.
Before you act on this mid-life crisis, review the reason why you want to achieve these things in the first place.
Don’t wait until you are middle-aged to re-evaluate the purpose of your life.
Too many people wait until their health starts to deteriorate, until they are dying, to change their behavior.
What is the best time to re-examine your purpose?
The first step is to look inward.
Write down 10 or 15 reasons why you are doing what you are doing and what you want in life.
If you don’t have 10 or 15 reasons for why you are living the way you live, it’s probably not the best time to re-evaluate.
Even great people need help
They don’t always get it, and they often don’t always trust it when they do get it.
When I first began the martial arts journey, I was convinced that the best at anything I did would be in the form of martial arts.
That was my thing. That was my life.
But after a few years of experiencing it, I discovered something.
It wasn’t that much of a “thing”. If I wanted to be great at it, I would have to do something about it, and I really didn’t want to.
I was naturally pretty athletic. I could do just about anything physically, and for the most part, I was pretty good at it.
I took lessons in swimming, soccer, and volleyball in high school. I was the star basketball player.
I was the football quarterback. I was the manager of the baseball team.
I was a karate black belt and could probably have killed someone with my bare hands if I wanted to.
But I was a terrible basketball player. I still remember my first day of basketball practice in high school.
I put on my uniform and walked onto the court for my first practice as a freshman.
The coach put me at point guard, which meant I was supposed to dribble the ball down the court and initiate my team’s offense.
The other team started shooting at me. I attempted a few shots, and every single one went into the basket.
What the hell?
I spent the rest of the practice practicing my dribbling. I had a hard time getting the ball to move forward from the direction I wanted it to.
I was pretty good at throwing it into the basket from far away. The rest of the season went the same way.
If I was down by one point and we had just had possession of the ball, I was much more likely to try to throw it in the basket than to take my time and get it to the hands of an open teammate.
I practiced relentlessly, but I wasn’t great at basketball. When I first started working out with weightlifting, I was impressed with how my strength compared to that of most people.
Then I discovered that my bench press was good, but most of the guys who had less than me could bench a lot more.
Then I discovered that most of the guys with less than me could squat and deadlift a lot more.
I tried to lift as much as the next guy, but it never really took. I had trouble with my form.
I started to over-exert myself and develop problems with my lower back. I didn’t want to be great at anything.
I would find myself getting frustrated with myself because I would see other guys doing an exercise correctly, but I would still fail miserably at it.
I would have to laugh at myself when I realized that I would spend more time trying to make the weight fly off the bar than I would actually spend getting stronger.
What am I supposed to do when the great King Arthur tells me I’m not going to be a great knight because I don’t know how to fence?
Or when Quasimodo tells me I won’t ever make the streets of Paris his choir boy because I can’t sing?
I’m not going to give up because I’m not good at it, and I am not going to stop working at it.
I’m going to keep trying. I hope everyone will keep trying with me.
I think one of the biggest obstacles we face in life is the notion that we aren’t good enough
That’s why I’ve struggled with many of my own personal goals: I think I’m not good enough to do things well.
And you know what? I’m not.
I’m not good at everything.
When I look at you, I don’t see a great singer or a skilled player of the guitar.
But I can listen to you and enjoy your music, I can watch your game and appreciate your athletic ability, and I can see your creativity in everything you do.
I can see you doing things right and doing things well, and that’s what counts.
And you are right: you are great at a lot of things.
Your hobbies and your passions are where your gifts lie, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be a musician, or a soccer player, or a graphic designer.
You don’t have to have it all figured out.
I’m sorry that I don’t listen to you as much as I used to.
I’m sorry that I didn’t send you a graduation card or thank you note, and that you didn’t get a present for your wedding.
I’m sorry that I let you down by forgetting about your birthday last year.
But I’m not sorry for loving you as much as I do.
You are an amazing person. You’re really talented.
You’re creative. You are generous.
You are smart.
You are compassionate.