More on Making Meaning

If you haven’t read it yet, skip down to my post Check Out Art of the Start. Then come back up here.

I read the manifesto again this morning for myself, for the 9th or 10th time, and want to share a bit more with you about No. 1 on Guy’s *GIST List: Make Meaning.

“Everyone should carefully observe which way his heart draws him, and then choose that way with all his strength.” —Guy Kawasaki.

One of the questions I’m asked most often these days, is why, or how I came to write my own book, Managing with Aloha. It’s a story that started in a very practical way, with my behaving in pragmatic fashion true to long-standing habit. However it’s a story that developed (and is still being lived, and written) because it became my way—after years of subconsciously looking for it—to make meaning.

Guy says it took him 20 years to figure it out for himself, and here, well, I’m admitting it took me way longer than that. The point is this: you can beat both our track records and start today.

In the very beginning of Art of the Start, Kawasaki explains that “making meaning is the most powerful motivator there is.” He then asks us to do a very simple exercise:

“Complete this Sentence: If your organization never existed, the world would be worse off because____________________________.”

Here’s how I now finish it “ ” because people need to know all the work they do can be worthwhile, and the business community in Hawaii can lead the way with our values of aloha.”

In the past, as much as I would admire people like Mother Theresa, Martin Luther King, and other humanitarians, I’d have this ache inside wondering if a day would ever come that I had a similar passion to serve that was so strong, so noble. Would I ever work for a reason other than making the money needed to survive? And Guy is absolutely right: once you do know what meaning you are destined to deliver, it is the most powerful motivator there is.

Spend some time with Guy’s manifesto. Do his exercises. Think of them as a gift you give yourself.

One last link to share if you enjoy the ChangeThis manifesto of Art of the Start as much as I did:

Enjoy the rest of your month; we’re days away from a new Ho‘ohana on November 1st.
(Halloween is my husband’s birthday, so we’ll be celebrating at the Say House as we always do!)

*GIST is Great Ideas for Starting Things.

P.S. Did you know that Guy Kawasaki was born and raised in Hawaii?

Post update: Have just learned that Art of the Start is in contention as Fast Company’s Book Club selection for January: Take this link and cast your vote!