Three Keys to Finding Your Calling

The year was 2002 and I was a District Manager in Corporate America responsible for over 500 employees and 17 locations. My boss called me with some great news. The Vice President of the company wanted to offer me the position of Midwest Regional Manager. I would be responsible for over 5,000 employees in 7 Midwest States. The promotion would include a significant increase in pay and I would be one of the youngest Regional Managers in the history of the company!

I spoke to my colleagues and they advised me to accept the position, and that saying NO would be career suicide. I asked my boss what he thought and he agreed. 

I took everyone’s advice into consideration and said NO to the opportunity. 

On the surface, taking the position seemed like a no brainer, but it failed The Line- up Test because it did not line up with the vision that I had for my life. The single factor that will help you to say NO to the wrong opportunity is clarity of purpose. When you are clear on your life’s purpose, your gut will tell you when you are taking a course of action that does not line up -- even when it seems like a good idea on the surface.

The question becomes:  How do you go about finding your calling? Keep reading and you will discover my three keys to finding your calling:

Pro Bono
This is a Latin phrase for professional work that is done for free. If we lived in a world without money, what would you spend your 5-8 hours doing? Your answer is an indication of your calling. I am sure that Lebron James and Tiger Woods would play their respective sports if there was no money involved. 

Passion
If you could make a difference for anyone or any cause, what would it be? I have observed certain ministers, police officers, and teachers in action. The passion that they demonstrate is a sign that they consider their work a calling and not just a job. 

Personal Abilities
What talent do you possess for which people are always complimenting you? Those compliments are confirmation of the direction that you should pursue. For example, if people in different settings are always complimenting your public speaking ability, joining your local Toastmasters club would be a good next step. Once you enter an environment that allows you to cultivate your gifts, your next steps become clearer.

I am living proof that when you make decisions based on what you believe you are called to do, everything works itself out. Three months after I said no to the promotion, the company went through a restructure and eliminated the job. If I had not listened to my gut, I would have been unemployed.

What would you do pro bono? What you are passionate about? What are your personal abilities? You will find your calling and make your future decision making process much easier once you answer these questions. 

Sincerely,
Eric M. Twiggs
Your Procrastination Prevention Partner

PS. To get additional information on how to discover your calling, download my latest ebook, One Moment in Time.

Motivational Message: What Drives You?

This week I share a short video that will inspire you to find your true purpose and passion in life. Time is best spent doing what you love. 

 
 

Sincerely,
Eric Twiggs
Your Procrastination Prevention Partner


PS. My ebook, One Moment in Time, will help you find and focus on your passions. It's is now available for download on my website. 

How to Avoid the Al Bundy Syndrome

In 1987, The Fox network launched a popular sitcom called Married with Children. This was a show about a dysfunctional family of four living in a Chicago suburb led by patriarch Al Bundy. 

Al had an unfulfilling career as a seller of women’s shoes and was always down on his luck. He was constantly disrespected by his wife and kids, and seemed resigned to his fate of being unhappy. A constant theme on the show was Al’s recollection of his high school glory days. 

He was always remembering this time in his life when he was the big man on campus. His favorite story to tell was the one where he scored four touchdowns in one game to help his football team win the state championship. Al spent more time reflecting on the past than he did planning for the future. I call this habit the “Al Bundy Syndrome”. 

Where's your focus? If you spend most of your time dwelling on a past result or relationship, then you are just like Al. Without a plan for the future, you end up with a present reality that leaves you unhappy. So where should your focus be? 

1. Your Passions
How would you spend your time if money was not an issue? If you woke up tomorrow morning with $50 million dollars in the bank and had the luxury of only doing what you loved, how would that change your schedule? 

For example, I am passionate about public speaking. With this in mind, I started to make future plans that gave me opportunities to practice my passion. I joined Toastmasters and taught classes at my local church. The more time I devoted to public speaking, the more doors opened to allow me to speak at a higher level. Using my passion as a starting point allowed me to move from speaking for free to speaking for a fee. 

2. Your Purpose
A member of my church just celebrated his 90th birthday. His sons threw him a surprise party where hundreds of people got together and said all of these great things about him and his life. He then took a moment to speak to everyone and told the audience about the accomplishments that made him most proud. 

Imagine that you can fast forward to your 90th birthday celebration. Who would be there and what would they say about you? What would you tell the audience about your life? Completing this exercise will help you to gain clarity on your life’s purpose. 

Al Bundy lacked a plan for the future, so past glory is all he had left. Even if you are married with children, knowing your passions and purpose will allow you to avoid the Al Bundy Syndrome. 

Sincerely,
Eric M. Twiggs
Your Procrastination Prevention Partner

PS. If you would like more strategies on pursuing your passion, download my ebook, One Moment in Time. 

What Drives You?

I thought that I had the right focus, but I was wrong. After graduating from college, my ultimate goal was to make as much money as possible. Seven years after graduation, I had achieved my objective. 

I was a 29 year old Silver BMW driving executive of a national automotive service chain, with 500 employees that reported to me. We had just won an award for having the most profitable District in the entire organization. I had made it to the top of the corporate ladder. 

One morning while driving my BMW, I happened to catch a glimpse of myself in the rear view mirror. The person that I saw looking back at me was someone that dreaded the idea of going into the office! 

How could this be? I was making more money at age 29 than my father ever made, and I had the car to prove it. Suddenly, I remembered the following quote from the Author Michael Josephson: “It’s not what you drive, it’s what drives you!” 

What do you see when you look in the mirror? Do you dread the idea of going to your job or business each morning? Unfortunately, many people that I know are simply “going through the motions”. This lack of passion is a root cause of procrastination. The following test can help you determine if you are procrastinating because of a lack of passion for what you are doing:

Snooze Button Test
In the morning, if you find yourself hitting the SNOOZE button on your alarm clock at least two times before waking, you are not positioned in your passion. Hitting snooze, is your way of procrastinating because you are not looking forward to starting the day. 

Think about it, if you knew that you were about to do something that you were born to do, you would not delay getting started. This snooze button test can help you to determine if you are in the right business or line of work. 

The question becomes, how do you determine what drives you so that you are not failing the snooze button test? Keep reading and you learn the three questions that will help you clarify your passions: 

The Three Questions

1. What are you passionate about?

2. What does success mean to you?

3. If you could make a difference for anyone or any cause, what would that difference be? 

Answering these questions made me realize that I felt the most passion when I was helping business executives and delivering speeches. Since I have come to his realization, doors have opened for me to do what I love. Today, I never have a morning where I dread the idea of doing what I do.

So there you have it. Whether you drive a Hummer or a “Hooptie”, asking yourself the three questions will help you to pass the snooze button test and drive you away from procrastination! 

What drives you? 

Sincerely,
Eric M. Twiggs
Your Procrastination Prevention Partner

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