I want to ask you a BIG question. What are you here on this planet to do?
Why are you here?
Why are we all here on this planet?
We're not here to just work, make money, pay bills, and die. And yet it feels like some days, that's the path that we're on.
With my prior ad agencies, I achieved what most people would call great success. I won awards, I had more business than I could yes to most of the time, I had large retainer contracts with clients for long term commitments. I had teams on three continents, and I had financial success.
But all of that, it just wasn't good enough.
I had become addicted to the "hustle porn." I worked 18 hour days, I made money, I spent money, I missed my son's first day of kindergarten, and at the end of the day, I was terribly unfulfilled.
And then I saw Simon Sinek speak at an event in Boston back in 2013 and he talked about your "WHY." I sat there realizing that I was trying to get up each day and get excited about other people's why. You know, voiceover IP in the San Francisco Bay Area and credentialing and privileging of providers in large hospital groups. HA!
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What was my why? What am I here on this planet to do? It didn't take me long to realize that enough is enough.
I'm not here for the circus. I'm not here for the rat race. I'm not here to always feel worn out and at conflict with other people. I'm not here to run a business where I hate my asshat clients (not all of them). And dread phone calls with them.
I'm here for much, much more. I am here on this planet to bring light to the darkness, I'm here to make an impact on others, and to make this life a little bit easier for those that I meet.
I'm here to bring good energy and good vibes and to attract people to better ways of life.
I'm here to speak for those who don't have a voice.
I'm here to love and to be loved and to experience the depth of life, the full range of experiences.
And when we reframe what we're here for, and then we evaluate our current business actions around our purpose, we can find a hard yes, or a hard no, regarding the things that we spend our time and energy and focus on.
Now for me, my business wasn't necessarily what was keeping me from doing what I'm here to do. So I'm not attacking the business. Or even the business world. Or my clients, just to be clear, I just want to be clear on that. I've had some amazing clients over the years that are dear friends that even today I'm beyond grateful for their friendship. But rather, my business model was keeping me worn out and burned out and focused on putting out the fires rather than planning ways to be impactful and to use my business as a platform to change the world.
Many entrepreneurs and executives I know get caught up in that same cycle of just keeping up and fighting the good fight to keep our employees happy and our customers on board. And we don't realize that we've neglected to strategically design and build impact and purpose into our business.
On one of my earlier vlogs, I talked about Arzo Yusuf's Quick Nails business - Sexy Boss Babe. And after meeting her, it was crystal clear to me that her business was not just about the aesthetics, or even about the beauty industrial complex. It was about empowerment. The way she weaved her purpose into the business was a beautiful example of a business with purpose. She's out in the community, she's advocating for foster youth and victims of human trafficking. Her product packaging has messages of empowerment and awareness directly on the packaging. She wrote and directed a film in Beverly Hills called Breaking the Cycle about how we can work towards fixing the problems faced by youth who are caught up in the foster system and then are victims of human trafficking.
The point for me became painfully clear was that although I was good at running an ad agency, I was totally missing the boat and coasting through this life on the surface with great frustration instead of experiencing the depth of love that I was meant for. I most definitely needed to take some major pivotal steps to design my business in a way that's much more fulfilling and in integrity with what I am here for.
So here's what I want you to do.
Consider where you are in life at this very moment.
Does your current business feed your soul? Does it make you feel alive? And that's either going to be a heck yeah or it's going to be a hard no. Now if you wavered on the answer to that question, I want you to consider this. Does your current business model work for you? Sometimes the business is the perfect way for us to fully be who we are here to be but the model we've designed and the things that we've allowed just aren't optimized.
So I want you to start by making a simple list of the parts of your business that may need some tweaking. And these are areas that you may want to bring more purpose to. Areas where you desire to feel more of that heck yeah.
For me, this was around meetings with clients. I'd begun to dread them.
It was around being over capacity. I was saying yes to too much and wearing myself too thin for too long.
It was in delegating. I had several teams and yet I was still doing so much myself.
And all of the things, all of those things were blockers that were keeping me from the love capacity that was in my heart.
This week, as you go through the motions in your business, I want to ask you to just be totally mindful of the parts of your business that you love doing. And also of the parts that make your gut feel a certain way.
So what's wearing you out?
What's depleting your high vibe?
What just doesn't feel like something that you want to do forever?
So let's start there.
Moment of Clarity
As you go through this exercise, I want you to trust your gut. Trust your feelings about the business activities you say yes to. And if it doesn't feel great, maybe it's not what you're here on this planet for. You may be good at it, but it needs to really set your soul on fire.
And every time you say yes to an activity or a task in your business, you're saying no to other activities and other tasks. So it's critical that we only say yes to the highest and best use of our time and energy. Those activities most in alignment with why we're here and what we're here to do.
I want you to just spend some time this week writing out a bit about what you're here on this planet for.
When I wrote mine out, here is what it looked like.
I am Rachel Cogar Yeakley, a serial entrepreneur and purpose strategist. I'm a professional writer and speaker. I've owned an ad agency and a global digital marketing firm. And I recently merged my company with a firm out of Southport, North Carolina. I currently coach and consult women entrepreneurs and executives to build a business that serves the world and to live a more meaningful life. I'm here on this planet to be the light and to help and serve others and to make an impact on those I meet. At the end of the day, I feel successful if I have eased the pain for just one person or helped to alleviate stress or frustration from recurring. I also see it as my goal to help others help others. Yes, to help others to help others. I'm dedicated to that ripple effect of impact. And I want to serve, I want those I serve to turn around and serve even more people. And that's my heart's vision.
When you write yours out, it's going to help you get super clear on what your purpose is and what your why is and then you'll be able to use that written statement and compare it against your current business and business model. And perhaps there's just an issue with your business model not being optimized. Perhaps you'll identify that you need to set certain boundaries. That you need to scale back a little bit on how you spend your time, that you need to learn to delegate more. Perhaps you'll learn that there are other ways you want to integrate your purpose. Maybe you're like Arzo Yusuf and you want to get out into the community and be an advocate and partner with a non-profit or a community partner. Or write a film or write a book or donate a portion of your proceeds to a charity. Once you write out who you are and what you are here on this planet for, it will help you to then go back and evaluate your current business actions and your business model and see, is this setting your soul on fire? Is this what you're here to do? And are you living in the full capacity of your purpose?