The other day, I went to the grocery store to pick something up for dinner, not really knowing what I wanted to make or eat.
So I rambled about, flitting from the produce section to the meat department to the pasta aisle back to produce, browsed sushi and rotisserie chickens, and picked up this and that along the way.
Eventually, I decided what we were having for dinner: chicken piccata! Rejoice! (Jeez, choosing my kids’ names seemed like an easier decision.)
And when I got home, I realized I forgot lemons…and capers. I could have cried.
Plus, I had a lot of extra stuff I got meandering through the aisles: grocery store sushi, yogurt that will eventually land in a spot in the way back of my fridge before I throw it out a two months after the expiration date, malted milk balls.
Turns out, I spent a lot more time and money at the store…and ended up with a mediocre chicken and potatoes dish and yogurt three days closer to the landfill.
Now imagine what it would’ve been like if I went into the store thinking chicken piccata.
I would’ve gone to produce to the meat counter to capers to white wine and boom…I would’ve been in and out in 10 minutes and have everything I needed for a delicious meal without spending another $50 and 30 minutes on other stuff that I don’t really need and most likely won’t use.
But this story isn’t about chicken piccata. It’s really a lesson in purpose.
See, purpose is the motor behind intention. It gives direction and momentum to everything we do. It’s the ultimate organizing principle.
And it’s not just for dinner. It’s for our business too.
Purpose is what helps us make smart decisions and do productive things. Sometimes even heroic things. When we’re clear on why we started out business in the first place, it drives us. It gets us up in the morning excited about the impact we’re making in this world.
Maybe your purpose behind your work is to give a better life to your kids. Or never worry about money. Or make your parents proud. Or go on a dream vacation. Or inspire the world.
Purpose is what gives your work meaning and direction.
Hit reply and tell me what your purpose is. I’d love to know so I can cheer you on.
As always, rooting for you!