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What’s Your “BIG WHY”?

May 5th, 2013

You may have heard this one before, but it is a powerful demonstration of my point. You’re standing at an open window on the 75th floor of a skyscraper. There is a narrow plank stretching about 100 feet across to the 75th floor window of an adjoining skyscraper. There is a man on the other side and he is holding a huge bag of cash. You don’t know how much but you know it’s a lot. If you can make it across, the cash is yours. You’re told that only 10% of the people who have tried to make it across were successful and 90% plummeted to their death. Are you going to try it? How much money needs to be in that bag for you to risk it?

Same scenario but this time the man isn’t holding a bag of cash. This time he’s dangling your child (or mom, or someone you love very deeply) and threatening to let go. You are the only person who can stop him IF you can rise to the challenge and make it across in time. Are you going to try it now?

The point is clear. When we think about it, there are plenty of things that transcend money in our lives. Our family, our health…… but the distinct, pre-defined measure of success in business is virtually always money. That’s fine, but if you do a little soul searching, it’s not really the money that creates a passionate drive that get’s you motivated every day. There are lots of ways to make money, and lots of ways to make large amounts of money. But most of them would either make you miserable or are so definitively mis-aligned with your values that you wouldn’t do them. Drug dealers can make a lot of money but (hopefully) you don’t condone illegal drug use and you wouldn’t risk prison or the other dangerous consequences of living your life as a drug dealer. So it’s not ALL about the money. There is something deeper that drives you to be successful every day. You layout personal goals and objectives for yourself and an action plan for achieving success in commercial real estate brokerage. You have people who hold you accountable and you do your best to execute your plan. If you want to “turbo charge” your performance, define and stay focused on your “Big Why”. Much has been written about this subject but it is such a powerful ingredient for your long term success and happiness, it’s worth re-focusing on. Ask yourself these questions and write down the answers:

v  What do I consider to be the most important thing in life? Why?

v  If I had unlimited amounts of money but had only 1 week to live, what would I do with that week?

v  Who are the most important people in my life? What do they admire most about me?

v  Describe in detail your definition of total happiness.

v  If I knew there was no way I would fail, I would ______________.

Steven R. Covey, author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People talks about “beginning with the end in mind”. The end he is talking about is not the paycheck. It’s the vision of who you want to be and how you define your purpose in life. Get in touch with your personal “Big Why” and keep it clearly in your sites every day.


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