I had a conversation with someone last night who had clearly lost his passion for execution. In exploring where his passion had disappeared, the following questions came up that I am repeating as best as I can remember them. They offer interesting food for thought.
Whose voice do you listen to? Do you listen to the one that drives your passion and taps your strengths or do you listen to the one that tells you what to do, even if you are bored out of your mind?
Do you listen to the one that brings excitement to your day or do you listen to the one that brings frustration?
Do you listen to the one that empowers you to help others or to you listen to the one that produces no tangible benefits for anyone?
Do you listen to the voice that is gentle but persistent or do you listen to the voice that is loud and obnoxious, suggesting it has priority because "it is the loudest"?
Do you listen to the voice that supports your agenda, purpose and passion or do you listen to the voice that drives the needs of others at the sacrifice of your own?
Failing to listen to your voice can lead to inaction, uncertainty, frustration, fear, anxiety, stress, and dissatisfaction – all things that prevent you from finding true fulfillment in life (both yours and those whom you are meant to help). Always listening to other’s voices at the expense of your own needs satisfies someone else’s needs at the sacrifice of your own. I’m not saying don’t compromise because life is filled with opportunities for give and take. However, don’t squelch your own passions so that you can help others live theirs.
I am reminded of something that Rick Warren of “A Purpose Driven Life” fame wrote. He discusses the notion of SHAPE when it comes to influencing others, based on our:
We have incredible talents but many times, we do not utilize them, because we are not listening to our voice, a voice that is the only thing in tune with our passions and strengths.
I am reminded of this quote from 1 Thessalonians chapter 1 verse 3:
Your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love and your endurance inspired by hope.
As Wayne Dyer (and others) have said many times:
Do not die with the music still in you.
As for my voice, I am accelerating a personal variation of Rick Warren’s PEACE plan, namely:
Plant centers of excellence wherever possible to encourage and incubate the potential of people
Equip leaders to be more effective at the softer side of things that are important to people
Assist the poor
Care for the sick
Educate the next generation to acquire the proper self-empowerment belief systems necessary to make a difference.
Follow your voice and make a difference that aligns with your passions, your talents and your strengths.
Take care and create a great weekend!