Why do you do what you do?
Before you answer, consider this: If you stopped doing it, who would care?
The first answer most of us give to the “why” question is all about us. To get paid. Because I enjoy it. Yada, yada, yada. Me, me, me.
The second question forces us to put what we do in terms of our customers, those who receive the benefit of the output of our work.
Most of us, when thinking about our jobs, think solely in terms of ourselves – what’s in it for us. How much we get paid, what benefits we receive, vacation time, how this prepares us for the next step in our careers, etc.
Amazing things happen when we flip this around, when we train ourselves to think in terms of what others receive by virtue of the work that we do. I have first hand experience with this transition in thinking. It has a powerful impact on how I go about my work. It causes a very real attitude shift. And there are times when I need to be reminded.
Sometimes it is difficult to realize the true benefits provided by our work. That’s where the second question really helps. If you stopped doing what you do, who would notice? Who would care?
Still having trouble? Listen to your customers.
After a recent performance, a gentleman came up to me and said, “Never stop doing what you do.” I told him I had no intention of quitting. He persisted. He said, “We all need to laugh. We don’t get to do it enough. You made me laugh. Never stop doing this.”
On those days when the business aspects of doing what I do get me down and feel like a chore, it helps to remember that people need what I do. This is not about me. This is about giving what I have been put here to give.
Why are you here? Who needs you to do whatever it is that you do?
Find your WHY, and never stop doing it.