Why Do You Do What You Do?
As part of a program I’m participating in, I’ve been challenged to communicate my “why.” Simon Sinek defines your “why” as being the common driver behind every successful person and business. People and companies who can articulate their “why” attract people who believe the same way. People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.
If you haven’t yet, watch Simon’s TED talk on the topic:
Where I Come From
I grew up in a teeny, tiny town where expectations are low. When I graduated from high school, getting married at 18 and then having lots of babies was a real option for me. I chose to go to college, which was nicknamed pursuing the “MRS” degree because I was expected to find my husband there and not much else.
I wanted something different than those low expectations. I jumped into the world of entrepreneurship at 16, and I quickly grew the business to be a big fish in that small pond. Almost everyone knew me as, “Kaye, the photographer.” I ran that business through my college career.
Perhaps ironically, I did end up finding my love in college, and we got married a few years later. Marrying him meant marrying into military life. Although we live an ocean away from that little town I grew up in, I found myself in another community where I’m not expected to do much.
Scratch that. I’m expected to support my husband. I serve our nation by managing the house, family and volunteering in my spare time. When I attended my first FRG (a family support group) event, small talk meant asking what my husband did, not if I had a career or dreams of my own.
Add in constant moves (3 in 5 years so far for us), a few deployments, a few kiddos, and you have a very real recipe for career disaster.
Let me be clear: I would choose to marry my military hunk again in a heart beat. I’m proud of what he does. I love the constant moving. And yet, I crave something different than what’s expected. So, I’ve turned back to entrepreneurship.
Entrepreneurship has transformed me. It’s been my mentor, my school of hard knocks, and my life coach. It’s given me the chance to grow into a larger definition of myself. I’m not just a wife and a mother. I have an identity and a purpose that includes those labels and a few more that are important to me:
Entrepreneur. Marketer. Strategist. Advisor.
I’m working to be an inspiring example that your location and circumstances do not dictate your level of success. I want to help others step into their greatness by building meaningful brands for them.
I’ve dedicated my work to building up online entrepreneurs who wish to rise above their comfort zone.
This is why I do what I do.
I believe the bravest thing that you can do is to show up and stand out. It takes “daring greatly” to make an impact.
I believe we all have to make the decision if we’re going to make a mark in this world or only live in the world according to everyone else’s expectations.
I believe that the modern world of online entrepreneurship has made this all more possible than ever. You just have to take action.
Dream With Me
I want to live in the world where entrepreneurs from teeny tiny towns across the world can bring their talents to the market and make an excellent living with meaningful work.
I want to live in the world where people embrace entrepreneurship as a viable alternative to accepting your circumstances (whatever those may be).
I want to live in the world where our “limits” are figments of our imagination.
Your Turn. What’s Your Why?
To spark your brainstorming and begin the process of identifying your “why,” ask yourself these questions:
- What part of your past has most shaped who you are today?
- What’s something you emotionally reacted to recently (in either compassionate anger or empathy)?
- What do you believe to be true about the world that others might not agree with?
- Explore the opposite of your “why.” What would the world be like if no one believed what you believe?
I’d love to hear from you. Why do you do what you do? What makes you wake up in the morning? Why should people buy what you sell?