In my business life I spend a lot of time thinking about and talking with people about purpose. Â In business, finding and being able to articulate purpose is (or should be) an essential piece of the complicated puzzle that leads to a successful company. Â We hear a lot about “culture” in business talk, but what actually drives a great culture at great companies is a clear understanding of purpose across all levels of the organization. Â It is often really hard to pinpoint and express purpose, but it is always worth the effort because nothing can better bring a team together or motivate productivity better than having every stakeholder living, breathing and believing in the same purpose.
Parenting Is Purpose
As parents, we are truly blessed. Â We don’t need to have meetings or retreats or bring in consultants to help us find our purpose. Â Being a parent is our purpose, and that is an amazing, empowering feeling once you acknowledge and accept it. Â So many people struggle with finding “meaning” in their livesâ€¦ it can be a cause of angst, anger, depression, lonelinessâ€¦ But if you are a parent, your life is filled with meaning and purpose from the moment your first child enters your life. Â Being a parent is your purpose, and always will be. Â From infants to toddlers to teens to adults, your children will bring immeasurable joy and unimaginable challenges, but they will always give your life purpose. Â You are needed. Â You are loved. Â You are given the most fulfilling opportunity to give back all that you know, all that you are, all that you dream, to help shape a little person into someone that truly matters, and someone who makes your place in this world more important than anything else in their world.
Influence and Inspiration
What is most challenging about parenting is that it is forever. Â What is most amazing and wonderful about parenting is that it is forever. Â And so are the rewards. Â We influence and inspire our children in so many ways and so deeply that we often don’t see it or appreciate it at the time. Â As a parent of kids in their 20’s I am constantly amazed at the things they will remember or point out as having been influential to them. Â Often these are things that might have seemed trivial to us parents at the time, yet from our kids’ perspective they were important moments. Â Recently my daughter recalled a time I (half-jokingly) chastised my son, her brother, for not being able to make his mind up about what kind of sandwich he wanted at a sub shop. Â According to Olivia I told her brother, who was probably 14 or 15 at the time, “Ethan, how are you going to get through life if you can’t even make a decision about what sandwich to have for lunch??? Â Make a decision already!!!” Â Olivia remembered this as both funny and significant adviceâ€¦ Â Who knew?
Purposeful and Purpose Full
When I get frustrated with things and feel like I am losing sight of the meaning and purpose in my own life, all I need to do is pull back and remind myself that I am a parent. Â A simple phone call, text, or better yet a hug from one of my kids, and I am instantly reminded that I have a purpose, and a most important one. Â I am a parent. Â Of course this doesn’t mean parenthood is your only purpose in life and that you can’t have other goals and dreams and meaningful endeavors. Â You can, and should. Â But if you are a parent, you never have to doubt that you have purpose.
Do you agree?
Jeff SassÂ is the proud dad of ZEO (Zach, 24, Ethan, 22 and Olivia, 21). Â He is also a seasoned entertainment and technology exec and active social media enthusiast. Â You can see more of Jeffâ€™s writing atÂ Sassholes!Â andÂ Social Networking RehabÂ and you can listen to Jeff on theÂ Cast of Dads,Â Â Wunderkind!Â andÂ Gape Into The VoidÂ podcasts. Â Jeff just launched a new story podcast,Â DadSlam.
Photo Credit:Â Â© Marek – Fotolia.com