Aside from learning how to cope with difficulties in my life over the last year, I also read one particular book that can be useful for all of us in every area of our lives. Start With Why by Simon Sinek is one of those books that you hear people talk about and it just sounds like another version of “How to Influence People” type books, overanalyzing all of the ways we human beings overreact to every situation and how we need to fix it, in the opinion of the author. Before I talk about this book, please watch this short TED talk by Sinek and feel free to search for other talks of his on YouTube. He is an amazing motivational speaker and his thoughts on leadership are nothing less than thought-provoking, he says a lot of things that most people are thinking but afraid to say.
Now, the book itself, might not be completely new thinking, but it is beautifully delivered and it actually makes you stop and think immediately how you can apply it to your life. The question is simple, why? You can ask “Why” to yourself every time you need to make a decision about anything new you would like to begin or even to determine if you should continue to do something you have already been doing. At the end of the day, we all need to ask “Why” we do the things we do, that motivating factor that gets us out of bed to complete whatever task or activity lies ahead for that day.
The “Why” can be a person, money, a feeling, a sense of purpose, whatever floats your boat. But you have to have a why. If you have no why, then you have no motivation, and you have no way to measure if what you are doing is working. If you can’t measure it, then why do it?
One striking quote really defines the message of the book, and if you don’t read anything else this drives it home fairly succinctly; “PEOPLE DON’T BUY WHAT YOU DO, THEY BUY WHY YOU DO IT. AND WHAT YOU DO SIMPLY PROVES WHAT YOU BELIEVE.” In simpler terms, do your actions match your words? If you have and show the passion for why you are supporting an organization or raising money for a cause and you can get others to feel that same passion, they are much more likely to jump in support you or even help you.
What is your why?