A PURPOSE – Without purpose there is only a void. Emptiness. That totally unrewarding feeling of mundane routine. The rat race. The treadmill. Running hard but getting nowhere. As men (and I imagine it is no different for women) it’s easy to lose our purpose, our reason ‘WHY’ we do what we do. Why should we get out of bed. Don’t get lost. Don’t lose your identity. Delve deep into your subconscious and find the cause that drives you. The ‘WHY’ that not just intrinsically motivates you, but that also rewards you. Go beyond money. Beyond materialism. Discover the joy of teaching, inspiring, mentoring. Usually it is in helping others that we achieve maximal satisfaction. Still confused? I suggest you start with Simon Sinek’s TED talk “Start with Why”.
A MENTOR – I remember reading a study about the prisoners in maximum security jails around the world. The results showed that the one thing the vast majority of these men, the worst of the worst, had in common was they had no mentor growing up. Interestingly, most also didn’t have a father figure in their lives either. A mentor can come from anywhere, most commonly in the form of an uncle, grandparent, a sports coach, teacher, and later in life more often a manager, boss, business coach. Beyond our primary years this role is rarely filled by a father. It’s the external influence. Someone we respect and listen to. Someone we are potentially intimidated by. Someone that will put us in our place if we waiver by making us accountable to ourselves and our own actions. A mentor shows you the map and inspires you to take the journey.
A PASSION – Your EMOTIONAL RELEASE. Life gets in the way. We easily lose our identity. We also often sacrifice our passions. Our hobbies. The things that we really enjoy doing. Back to basics. The things that make us who we are. As children we have passions a plenty. We PLAY freely. Without guidance. We gravitate toward what we enjoy doing. Our passion can be anything. Reading. Riding. Music. Gaming. Science experiments. Chess. Guitar. Poker. Be selfish. Prioritise and make time for your passion. You must be happy to make those around you happy.
A MOVEMENT – Your PHYSICAL RELEASE. As bipedal animals we are made to move, not sit. Stand. Squat. Lower. Two legs and two arms. It may be a sport. It may be resistance training. It could just be a nice long walk. Hike anyone? Remember men are action orientated. Neglecting exercise and movement is neglecting a fundamental physiological need. Ignore at your own peril. Psychologically and hormonally we must exercise to thrive. Without it our body and mind atrophies. Shrinks. Rapidly ages. Becomes less efficient. So get involved. Ride, run, lift, compete, hit, swim, hike, roll, jump… Just move.
A BEST MATE -A great PARTNER is a luxury we all crave and many of us enjoy, but a best mate is invaluable. A best mate is a sounding board. A best mate is a lifeline. A counsellor. Our ally in war and right hand man in celebration. A best mate is a bias yet trustworthy opinion you can (almost) always trust. Enough said.
A TRIBE – The team. The gang. The boys. You are the median of your 5 closest friends. Who are you hanging around. Do they motivate you? Do they exude success in the traits you so desire? We are social creatures that crave interaction and as males. A tribe gives us a name beyond our own. They give social meaning and status in this chaotic world. Tribes give visceral comfort and pride from familiar fellowship. Keep your friends close.
Lose any of the above and you may find yourself losing identity. An itch you can’t scratch. That empty void you barely recognise but subconsciously understand needs to be filled. Use the above as a checklist. Strengthen the bonds that exist. Build new allegiances. Be selfish. Above all remember your purpose and the role connection with others plays in achieving that purpose. Be proactive. Be an Inspiring Leader.