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Discovering Your Why-to's

by David DeFord

I love sporting goods stores. I enjoy browsing through the gear for baseball, cycling, camping, kayaking, hiking, golf, and other outdoorsy stuff. My wife Kathy likes the clothes.

Recently a huge new store opened not far from our home. This gigantic store features dozens of departments spread over two stories. In entering the store, the customer sees the team wear to the left and golfing gear to the right. The designers built the store to force the customer to wind through the various departments before coming upon the items they want to purchase.

In the center of the first level stands a full-sized ferris wheel. For a dollar the customer can purchase a ten-minute ride. As the wheel lifts the customer above the first floor merchandise, past the second level to up near the ceiling, the customer gains a new perspective and can scan every department of the store.

From the perch above the crowded merchandise racks he gains a greater appreciation for the massiveness of the store. He can see where he needs to go to get what he wants. His vision expands.

Sometimes as we browse through life we can lose sight of the visions of greatness open to us. We can become so involved in the here and now, the daily tasks of making a living and raising a family, that we lose sight of why we do them.

Sometimes in our doing, we concentrate so much on the "how to" we forget the "why to".

Possessing vision entails seeing the big picture--the why. Visionaries see the "why" and the eventual outcome before they start to find the "how". They see the outcome before it is apparent and focus on that outcome as they work their way toward it.

When we forget the “whys” we can easily become distracted and veer away from our ultimate visions. When faced with challenge, those who know why they want to succeed will press past the opposition and overcome it. Those not in touch with their ultimate motives slide with the flow and lose out when challenged.

How can we insure that we develop the vision we need to succeed?

Determine why you want to achieve your aim
As you set goals and make plans to achieve them, identify and record why you want to achieve them. You may identify these reasons for achieving a goal: the joy of conquest; the gaining of wealth; the pursuit of wisdom; the improvement of health; the satisfaction of serving others; the honor of serving a great cause; or the desire to please a spouse or parent.

When you feel like backsliding on your goal quest focus on your reasons for wanting to achieve it. This can help give you the strength to keep striving.

Find daily inspiration
Study inspirational material every day. Some of your study may focus on “how-to” perform, but you can add material that reminds you “why-to” achieve. This will keep you motivated and inspired to focus on your vision.

Books by qualified authors, inspirational tapes and CDs, and scriptures can fill this great need.

Frequent escapes
Conferences, vacations and other escape opportunities can help you tune your mind and remember your reasons for achievement. Hours in the car, airport, plane, bicycle or tent can provide great opportunities for deep reflection and evaluation.

Keep a journal
Recording your feelings as well as your daily activities can help you remember why you want to overcome your challenges and reach your goals.

Desk pictures, passwords, index cards and other reminders can help you focus on what you want to achieve and why.

Raise your sights, elevate your vantage point, and lift your vision. As you do so you will improve your life.

Related Quotes

All growth is a leap in the dark, a spontaneous, unpremeditated act without benefit of experience. Henry Miller

The biggest lesson I have ever learned is the stupendous importance of what we think. If I knew what you think, I would know what you are, for your thoughts make you what you are; by changing our thoughts, we can change our lives. Dale Carnegie

You are the fruit of the thoughts you have planted and nourished. If you want a better harvest, you must plant better thoughts. Robert Allen

Live your life each day as you would climb a mountain. An occasional glance towards the summit keeps the goal in mind, but many beautiful scenes are to be observed from each new vantage point. Harold B. Melchart

High achievement always takes place in a framework of high expectation. Jack Kinder

Nothing splendid has ever been achieved except by those who dared believe that something inside them was superior to circumstances. Bruce Barton

Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice; it is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved. William Jennings Bryan

We succeed only as we identify in life, or in war, or in anything else, a single overriding objective, and make all other considerations bend to that one objective. Dwight Eisenhower

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