Sorry for the long silence. Like everyone, I’ve been rolling with the punches of the pandemic and the ongoing Melbourne lock-downs. No doubt, like me, you’re experiencing the ups, the downs and the in-between ‘blah’ days that come with such uncertain times. Hang in there!
While I’ve been silent, I’ve not been idle. I’ve spent much of this year quietly plugging back into my purpose in a brand new way.
I’ve completed a first-draft manuscript for my next book, repurposed my business and launched a new website. I’m also stepping more boldly into my calling to deliver training on purpose and storytelling in schools.
Lessons from Coogee Beach
Some years ago, I was swimming at Coogee Beach in Sydney, face turned towards the shore waving at my son Billy. Before I knew it, a fierce wave had engulfed me, dumped me upside down and propelled me into a tumbling spin. I had no control over the wave. All I could do was surrender to it and let it carry me to shore.
As a qualified Surf Lifesaver, I was acutely embarrassed. I’d ignored the number one rule of lifesaving which is to never turn your back on the waves. Sometimes, we only get the lesson when it hits us in the face, right? Literally, in this case.
Soon a second wave was on the horizon, much bigger than the first. I had two options. To retreat to the shore and avoid the potential of being dumped again, or to wade out and face it head on. Option one lacked courage. Option two it was then.
Purpose: An anchor in the storm
This time, I remembered what I’d been taught. Three seconds before the peak of the wave hit, I took an enormous breath, dove down to the ocean floor and grabbed the sand below to anchor myself. The wave crashed over me leaving me intact and in control. I’d learnt the lesson so I could now deal with the next wave, and the next.
The sand in this story is a metaphor for purpose. A clearly articulated purpose brought to life through story, is a most powerful way to anchor your people as the waves of this pandemic continue to hit. It helps turn depletion into rejuvenation, disconnection into unison and managers into leaders.
Two levels of purpose needed
There are two proven levels of purpose needed for people to perform at their peak. They need to know and believe in the school or company purpose and they need their own unique purpose for their role as it connects to this purpose. Many companies focus on organisational purpose but neglect role purpose.
While many of us inherently know we have a purpose for our job, we’re not so good at articulating it, using it drive our day-to-day work or expressing it well to others.
Not sure how this actually works? Read about Carolyn Lancaster’s purpose in action.
If you’re a leader struggling with a team that is feeling depleted, disconnected and lacking direction, this Purpose Health Check will help. It’s designed to be used as a team-meeting guide to help you understand just where your team sits in terms of connection to purpose. It will be a bit of fun and a way to gather some deep insights into what’s really ailing your people.
Till next week!
PS: My own purpose is to help you bring your purpose to life so together we can build a better world. I do this through my Talk on Purpose course. It’s a course that helps your leaders become crystal clear on the purpose of their role as it relates to your company or school purpose. Once they have clarity of purpose they are then taught how to write and tell a 3-minute story that is delivered live to your work or school community at a gala event. It’s delivered completely online and/or in-person. Over 200 people have completed this course and praised it as life-changing and transformative. Intrigued? Book a Conversation