With so much going on in your business and in the world, things like positivity and purpose might not be at the top of your list.
But did you know that there are many benefits to leading with positivity and purpose, both on your health, your business, and even on the longevity of your life?
The Midlife in the United States Study discovered that those that had a sense of purpose in life actually lived longer. They found that “people who had reported a greater sense of purpose and direction in life were more likely to outlive their peers.”
Similarly, positivity has great psychological benefits. According to the author of Beyond Happy: Women, Work, and Well-Being, Beth Cabrera, “Positive people have more energy and are more self-confident and hopeful. Because of this, they tend to set higher goals and expend more effort in order to reach their goals. They are also more resilient, which helps them bounce back and persevere despite setbacks.”*
Tips to Help You Lead with Positivity and Purpose
Are you ready to add positivity and purpose to the top of your list?
Let’s explore some ways you can start today!
Positivity and Purpose Tip #1: Start with Why
The first step to living a life of positivity and purpose is to discover your why.
You’ve likely heard of Simon Sinek by now—he’s well known for his 2009 TED Talk, Start with Why. Here is his video if you’d like to get caught up!
Start with Why: Applied
Now, let’s break down Start with Why so you can apply it to your business and your life.
Jimmy Chou provides a fantastic summary of Sinek’s concept, The Golden Circle:
- Why — Why do you do what you do? What’s your purpose?
- How — How do you do what you do to fulfill your purpose?
- What — What do you do? What’s your product or service?
"In his talk, Simon points out that customers should start with their ‘why’ (purpose) and infuse that into the ‘how’ (people, process, technologies) to deliver the ‘what’ (product or service). It seems logical, but many organizations start backward, and instead focus on the ‘what’ without a clear sense of the ‘how’ — and definitely not the ‘why.’
But, people buy why you do something. Not what you do. Not how you do it.
Starting with why isn’t simply about discovering your organization’s purpose. The Golden Circle is also a framework to help maintain focus on your transformation initiatives.”*
Chart Your Purpose: Exercise
What is your why?
Why do you do what you do? What is your purpose? Is it for your family? For success? To make a positive impact? To build a legacy?
Perhaps it’s all of these things. Whatever your mission is, it’s time to write it down!
Take your why (your purpose), and write it on a post-it note, or type it and print it out. Stick it in a place you’ll see often (like next to your monitor!) so you’ll be reminded often.
When you have a tough day or suffer from some negative self-talk, refer to your mission statement. Use it to remind yourself of what’s really, truly important.
Continuously reminding yourself of your purpose will help you to live a more fulfilled life, and this will show in your business as well. When you operate from a sense of purpose, you'll be a better leader and your team will gain a new sense of appreciation for your mission.
Positivity and Purpose Tip #2: Seek Inspiration
Having your mission statement by your desk is just one example. There are many ways you can seek inspiration and remain inspired.
Here are a few ideas:
- Use a chalkboard, pinboard, or dry erase board to post inspirational quotes or verses—bonus points if it’s next to your work computer!
- Keep framed pictures of your family, loved ones, or any mentor you have that inspires you nearby.
- If you don’t have a private office, bring inspiring items into your facility—add quotes in stickers, paint, or framed photos of your "first day in business" or "humble beginnings." Your customers will appreciate your journey (and the added boost of positivity in your space!).
Whatever you do, be sure to create a path of inspiration for yourself to follow throughout the day. Add these items to your car, bag, work desk, and home so you can stay inspired throughout the day.
Positivity and Purpose Tip #3: Practice Positive Thinking
Thinking positive thoughts is a lot easier when you have access to tools that can help you.
First, consider your preferred learning style:
- If you’re visual, hanging up your "why" and inspirational images is a good start, but you might also enjoy websites/apps that offer daily quote messages. Motivation, Daily Quote, and Enliven are all examples of apps that provide a daily quote you can reflect on.
- If you’re auditory, you might enjoy listening to a podcast. The Tim Ferris Show, The Tony Robbins Podcast, and Happier with Gretchen Rubin are all examples of podcasts that focus on keeping listeners inspired and motivated.
- If you’re kinesthetic, you might enjoy something more interactive, like a webinar where you’re able to interact, or a workshop. You might ask your mentor to provide exercises that you can complete. Or, you might want to start with the exercises in this guide!
- If you prefer to read and write, books and other visual resources are likely a staple for you. Books like You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay, The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren, Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff by Richard Carlson, and The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale are all a great place to start. You might also choose to add some workbooks, too.
Find what works best for you. Then, shift your behavior a little bit at a time to continue down the path of living a more positive life!
Positivity and Purpose Tip #4: Set Goals to Stay on Track
If you suffer from engaging in a lot of negative self-talk, goal setting is a must-do activity for you. This will help you to stay on track even during those "bad days".
Let's talk about:
- Aligning your goals with your purpose
- Setting goals
- Making your goals achievable by planning and time blocking
- Celebrating your goals
Aligning Your Goals with Your Purpose
Goal-setting should not be an arbitrary activity—it should be intentional and focused. I highly encourage you to involve your business coach or mentor in this process.
But before you set goals, start with your purpose (your why). Place your personal and professional mission statements in plain sight as you create goals. When you define each goal, refer back to your purpose: does it align?
If you’re a business owner, you’ve likely been through many 5 and 10-year goal-setting sessions. And while thinking ahead is critically important to your business, small goals are also important. Take your primary goals and break them down—which ones are your focus for the rest of this year? What about next year?
I highly recommend setting your annual goals in October for the upcoming year. This way, when January rolls around, you’re ready to hit the ground running!
Once you’ve set your annual goals, break those goals down into actionable chunks. Start with the quarter, then break the quarter into monthly goals, then weekly. At the end of your goal-setting session, you should have the following:
- Annual goals
- Quarterly goals
- Monthly goals
- Weekly goals
All goals lead back to your purpose! Remember, when you’re feeling off, focus on your goals. Jump over to what you’re supposed to achieve this week and place all of your focus in that area. There is no room for negative self-talk for someone who is on a mission!
Making Your Goals Achievable by Planning and Time Blocking
It’s one thing to set goals, it’s another thing to act on those goals.
Planning and time blocking are both vessels to help you achieve your goals but it’s just like anything else in life: the more you practice, the better you’ll get at it!
When you first start planning ahead and using your calendar to time block, it might seem daunting or like overkill—but I promise you, it’s worthwhile. The more you practice time blocking, the more you’ll understand yourself and how you work best.
What is Time Blocking?
Time blocking is an activity where you make a list of goals and allot time in your calendar to achieve them. Let’s say your aim is to grow revenue this year by booking more birthday parties and events. You’ll want to block time off in your calendar to focus on activities related to this goal in your calendar each day.
Perhaps on Monday, you set aside one hour to review your website and notate any changes you might want to make. On Tuesday, you work with your team to make those changes. On Wednesday, you put together a Facebook Ad. On Thursday, you make outgoing calls to last year’s parties and send follow-up emails to every phone call made. And on Friday, you review the efforts of the week.
Celebrating Your Goals
It’s common to feel strange about celebrating our own goals, but remember, your own happiness stems from within you. Happiness is ultimately a choice that each of us make every single day.
By choosing to celebrate your achievements, you allow yourself to experience the joys of success. After all, isn’t that what you’ve been working toward this whole time?!
So, celebrate your goals! And of course: acknowledge those who helped you get there.
That celebration might be an announcement to your business coach or mentor, to your spouse, to your social media community, or to a group of FEC owners like yourself. Whatever it looks like for you, celebrate!
eBook: Overcoming Adversity & Negative Self-Talk
Positivity and purpose can help anyone to live a better, more improved life. Now that you know the benefits, have a framework to develop your personal and professional purpose, and are armed with a few tools to lead a more positive life, we hope you feel empowered!
If you'd like to continue learning, we invite you to download a copy of our complimentary guide, Overcoming Adversity & Negative Self-Talk.
Like This Post? Leave a Comment Below!
Was this article helpful? Let us know in the comments below. We'd love to hear your thoughts!