<![CDATA[Our Highest Work - Blog]]>Tue, 12 Jan 2016 16:43:34 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[Getting Things Done in a Present & Grounded Way (with Padma Gordon)]]>Fri, 01 May 2015 04:01:05 GMThttp://www.ourhighestwork.com/blog/getting-things-done-in-a-present-grounded-way-with-padma-gordon
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Check out Padma Gordon at TheResponsiveBody.com

Here's the complete transcript:
George: Welcome to Our Highest Work, a podcast and video series where we are exploring the best ideas for a spiritually based business success. My name is George Kao. In today’s episode, I’ve got my friend and client, Padma Gordon, who’s going to be leading a conversation about … well, I like to call it Joyful Productivity or Getting Things Done in a Grounded and Present Way. By the end of this episode, my hope is that you all have gotten a few insights from both me and Padma about how to be happier as you work, how to be getting the things that you want to get done, and getting them done in a more mindful and joyful way. So before I bring Padma on, I just want to read you her official bio, and then I’ll bring her on, and idea of love hearing from her, and also hearing what questions she has to ask me as well.

So Padma Gordon is a psycho-spiritual counselor who assists people in creating movement in their lives, movement of all kinds. She engages clients through her mindfulness, movement, hypnosis, and various somatic practices, so that they can find freedom in their bodies, in their hearts, and minds, and live a deeply fulfilling life. That’s wonderful. I know from having worked with Padma for several months as she creates amazing breakthroughs for her clients. She was just telling me about one of those earlier today.

I’m just really happy to have her here, and have her be the conversation leader here. Hi, Padma. Thanks for agreeing to do this.

Padma: Great. Hi, George. Thanks for inviting me to participate. I’m happy to be here.

George: Yes. I’m just going to kind of turn it over to you. Any questions, however you want to start this topic of getting things done from whatever perspective interests you. As you know, I can talk on any of these things. So happy to go wherever you want to go.

Padma: Beautiful.

George: I also should say that I want you to interrupt me anytime with questions or insights, anything you like.

Padma: Okay. Thank you. I think that most interesting or inspiring piece about this question of getting things done in a present and grounded way is what are some of your keys. Because something that I really appreciate about you is your ability to break things down into kind of bite size pieces. So if you want to lay out a few of those, I would love to hear them.

George: Yes.

Padma: I’m sure them too.

George: Yes. Absolutely. I was thinking about what I would share here in this little session. There’s a couple of things I’d be happy to talk about. One is mindset or I might even say heart set. Sort of the mental, emotional environment we bring into our day-to-day work. Another piece of it that we could talk about is the sort of more logistical.

You and I have talked about this before, but the whole idea of temporal and physical placeholders.

Padma: Yes. That’s a great piece. Very fair, and really we’ll eliminate that more so like.

George: Yes. So maybe what I’ll do is I’ll start with the mindset-heart set piece?

Padma: Yes.

George: As I share mine, I would love to hear what works for you and what you are seeing what works for your clients too. But I think where I start with all this is the idea that we live in a friendly universe. I think it was Albert Einstein, and those of you who know this quote can correct me if I’m wrong here. I think it was he who said, “The most important decision you’ll make in your life is to decide whether this is a friendly or hostile universe.” Again, I may be taking the quote over context.

So those of you, who know the quote, please comment, chat, and let me know. What I interpret from that is, which a lot of people do, believe that the world is hostile that there are people who are going to hurt them that bad things will happen to them. It could definitely ruin their day, but it could even ruin their life, or it could ruin the life of someone they love. They’re on edge, and kind of looking out for dangers all the time. By the way, this is kind of how we evolve this … homo sapiens is we evolved out of the savannah where we were looking for tigers.

Padma: We did.

George: We were always … we hear a branch crack somewhere. We’re like, “Okay. What was that? Was that a predator?” It was better for our survival, for our brains to adapt noticing a hostile universe …

Padma: Right.

George: … than a friendly universe.

Padma: Right. It was essential to be in that fight-or-flight mode in order to evolve as a species, and survive.

George: Yes. Fight or flight, exactly right. But thankfully, most of us live in a primarily friendly society now. We don’t have to be afraid for our lives most of the time. Gosh, even airplanes are safer. If I understand airplanes going on a flight is safer than even being in a car.

Thankfully, being in a car is 99.9% of the time safe. Walking down the street, thankfully, is very safe. So most of the time, things are really safe now, but we still are dealing with the evolution of our brains being more aware of hostility than remembering all the good things, and the things that are working right, and the things that are going well. But even beyond our evolution, I feel like there is a, I might say, philosophical or spiritual piece to this that I’ll bring in.

I always remind everyone who listens to the podcast that you are loved and cared for by invisible forces that are far more powerful than you can ever imagine. My personal belief, and I believe that for all of you, that the destiny of your soul and the trajectory of your consciousness is ever toward more bliss, more understanding, more awareness of love, of truly the foundation of the universe on a metaphysical and spiritual basis is based on love.

Padma: Yes. So I just want to pause you right here because I think this is a really important piece. As you started, as you shifted from speaking about evolution and fight-or-flight and you started speaking about it, I heard your voice drop an octave. Also, I felt, and I’ll just reflect what happened when you started saying, “Oh. It’s essentially safe, and you’re loved, and you’re cared for.” Actually, my whole system exhaled, and dropped in deeper. I feel like that’s a really important piece because that is where you’re coming from when approaching your highest work.

That something inside you settles and drops in. So you’re present and available, and then there’s this incredibly like you said you’re tapped into the whole dimensionality and all these levels of metaphysics in the universe because your intelligence is open. You’re not contracted and afraid and wondering what’s going to happen around the bend. I hear a branch and I’m going to be dead. It’s like, “Oh. Actually, my system is relaxed.”

There’s more availability to intelligence and responsiveness and seeing what’s needed. You’re able to do it with your whole system at least.

George: It sounded beautiful

Padma: Thank you.

George: So you’re bringing in the somatic perspective to this. Actually, I want to ask you then. I want to ask you if you had a client who was feeling most of the time anxious and they might not even know they’re anxious, but you can tell that they’re anxious and fearful. What’s one piece that you would share with them that would help them to be more present grounded and loving?

Padma: That’s a great question. I do have experience working with people who are anxious or fearful because I think most of us in this world walk around at times with a certain level of anxiety or fear. It’s just part of the human condition. But, one thing just to really start with the basics is bring the person into their body like right now as I’m sitting here in my chair. I’m just feeling where my back is resting against the chair, and where I’m supported from underneath.

Once you get that consciousness of being connected in your body because the body is an ally. The body is a very grounding resource. Once I’m in my body, like you said just as we got into areas that we need to take a few breaths.

George: Yes

Padma: So it’s like, “Oh. I’m going to take a few breaths in a limited space. And then if there is some kind of fear and contraction, it’s much more evident. We can just pause and be with it. Not judge it or run from it or try to fix it, and just be with it. Then, we can move through.”

George: Yes. It’s beautiful.

Padma: It should come from openness.

George: Yes. I love that. I know I’m going to keep learning from you, Padma, about the somatic. I feel like a lot of my practices start kind of start with the head, start with ideas. I think it goes both ways, right? Ideas can lead to an openness in the body and vice versa, of course, openness in the body can lead to more openness in ideas.

So just to kind of complete that philosophical piece of a friendly universe, I also think that the universe – therefore, because it’s friendly and because the ultimate destiny and trajectory of our soul and consciousness is toward the good, and also the ultimate destiny I should say is that you are indestructible. Your consciousness, of course, your body, all our bodies are indestructible, this body anyway. Your consciousness, your awareness is indestructible. Those of you who have been following this podcast, you’ve heard my interview with Stafford Betty. Go check that out. We are indestructible, and our consciousness is.

So knowing that, and knowing that our trajectory’s toward the good, and toward being basically smarter and more loving, the universe is calling us to experiment. It is not about the results of each day or each project, but the universe is saying, “You know what? The results sometimes it’s going to be amazing, and sometimes it’s going to be what you might consider to be a failure or neutral. The real result is your growth over time, and it’s really hard to see your growth over time until you look back.” So the universe is saying, “We just want you to experiment with whatever is calling to you, whatever project you feel really passionate about, or another task you really need to do, but just experiment.”

Bring a spirit of playful experimentation to anything that you do because you remember that it’s all good. That it’s all us.

Padma: Yes, with a spirit of play, with a spirit of curiosity.

George: Yes. Yes. Curiosity. Right.

Padma: It’s so useful. I love your invitation, George, to just try it, and also that sometimes you’ll get a great response, and sometimes you’ll feel like, “Wow. That kind of landed with a thud.” You also mentioned a word that I really love, which is to be neutral. So it’s this neutrality that allows us to just show up and do stuff.

Like it doesn’t have to be perfect, and we just take an action. We put it out there. We don’t get stuck. We appreciate when it gets a great response. Life just cheers, and gives us thumbs up, and likes our post or whatever it is.

It feels really good not to get stuck there. Same way, not to get stuck with “Wow. That one didn’t go over it.” So it wasn’t such a big splash. But not to get stuck anywhere and just to receive it, “Oh. Receive the good. Yes. This is awesome.

Okay. Receive my failure. Oh. This doesn’t feel so good. Okay. Keep moving, so that we’re continuing to move and just show up and do something.” Make an offering. Do a piece of writing. Take a mundane action. Take a creative action. So I feel like it’s part of the movement process that comes from being open.

George: Wow.

Padma: In that openness, we can keep taking action. Anywhere, we can clamp down on “Yes. I’m so good.” Or “No. I’m not good.” It’s the same, so then in this close-handedness, nothing can flow. What I hear you talking about is line up with your own creative flow and the flow of life itself, the flow of the universe that wants us that’s kind of pulling us toward our highest good or our highest work.

George: Oh, that’s beautiful. Wow. I love that.

Padma: Thanks.

George: I’m seeing the word movement in a new way from what you just said. I love that you said, “The clamping of the hands and the analogy of us.” Even when we get a good result, it’s easy to get stuck there that could result in thinking, “All right. I’m good now, so my next thing must be as good.”

Padma: Or better.

George: Or better. It always has to … we have this illusion that our results always have to keep going up and up and … Hopefully if we have a good strategy, the result will, over time in a very big trajectory, it’s generally up. But, there’s a lot of this up and down throughout our growth. Hopefully, we can remember that whatever the result is, to find the real result is in celebrating the efforts that we put in.  

Padma: Yes.

George: To celebrate the effort, we will say, “Okay. It’s about the effort. So I’m proud that I wrote that.” That means if I’m going to do more good, it’s about writing more, or it’s about speaking more, or it’s about making another offering to this client or to my audience or whatever it is. So I love that you said movement. Yes. Don’t get stuck.

Padma: Yes. Awesome. Then, just as you’re saying that, it’s like, “In order to take another step, you have to land in what you did.” Actually, I wrote something the other day. As I finished it, I just went, ‘Yes.’” Then, I went on to my next thing, but I gave myself that feedback and that credit.

So when I receive that, I go, “Great. I did it.” There’s this process, especially in building a business. If you’re hung over yourself and your life that you actually give yourself that, “Oh. Yes. You’re doing a good job.” We all need to hear that, right?

George: That’s right.

Padma: So that we can keep going, and also so that we can ride the waves that go up and down. Then, there’s space for, “All right. That one wasn’t so amazing. Okay. Keep going.” That’s like feel it, and then keep going.

George: Yes. Actually, you were the one who brought up that idea when we were brainstorming this episode. You were the one who brought up the idea of grounded. So I’d love to hear any thoughts you have about what does it mean to be grounded even as you are in movement and in flow? So these two ideas can sound like they’re opposites, but somehow you’ve been able to integrate that into your own practice.

Padma: Yes. That’s a really awesome question. Yes. Well, one piece that helps with that is being anchored in the movement of your breath. So you’re anchored. It gives your attention a place to rest, and yet the breath until it’s done is always moving. So you say anchored in the movement of your breath or I mean there are so many different possibilities.

But what I feel like and what I often suggest to people that I work with is just really pausing. I know you work with that yourself. Like just having pauses into presence. We do need to use our analytical creative mind, but not to just be working from up here. That’s what I mean.

Being grounded, it’s like, “Okay. So my mind is going, and I’m having these great thoughts and all these stuff.” And then, “Oh, right. I’m still here.” The expression is occurring in the field of presence.

That it’s happening and you’re present, so stay around it in the present moment. Because often times, we get … you can hear it. If we start talking really fast, I’m really not in myself. I have to work to stay in myself. So one thing I’m doing right now, and you could use this maybe if you’re doing some kind of public speaking or just relating to somebody, I’m actually sensing my vocal chords vibrate inside my throat. Right?

George: Yes.

Padma: I’m hearing my own voice, and I’m hearing your voice. I don’t have to speak in a hypnotic trance voice, but I’m just doing it staying with, “Oh. This is what I’m … I’m in myself.” Because then whatever you’re offering, you’re offering from a place of being grounded and connected to your self, and also as you mentioned to awareness, to consciousness that is incorruptible. That doesn’t come and go.

So it’s like having in a way this like when I “in” and when I “out”. So I’m not leaving myself as I’m with you and as I’m with a larger audience, all of you who are here with us.

George: Wow. That’s beautiful. I’ve actually never heard that idea, that tip before about feeling your vocal chords. I’m doing that now. I’m feeling my vocal chords.

Padma: Great.

George: It’s interesting. It is making me feel more mindful, and I almost want to stop and listen to the vocal chords and feel it. It’s interesting because I think that when I am inspired and speaking from some kind of a higher insight, I find myself witnessing myself do it. I think that I’m going to bring this new practice of witnessing the vocal chords, and seeing how that allows my speaking to be more grounded and more powerful and resonant, I think, with people. Right?

Padma: Yes. So I’m just curious. How does it feel because I can hear and see you doing it right now?

George: Yes. I’m going to practice it, and I’ll let you know because right now I think I’m probably paying too much attention to it.

Padma: Well, that’s a good point because there’s this kind of telescoping in to say this point of the vocal chords.

George: Yes.

Padma: And then, telescoping out to the larger context of our conversation.

George: Right. Exactly. Yes, like the witnessing. So the other piece you were mentioning that you really liked was the fiscal temporal placeholders? Yes?

Padma: Yes. Those pieces are the pieces that you share with me have been very useful. I’m still working on implementing them steadily.

George: Yes.

Padma: So I just wanted to … just give an invitation to everything when you hear what George is doing, you’re doing so many things, just be kind to yourself and recognize that the implementation is incremental. It really happens over time to stabilize in the practice itself.

George: Yes. Thank you.

Padma: Yes.

George: I often forget to remind the audience that it is a step-by-step process. Yes. So thank you for saying that because sometimes people will hear my process, and they go, “Well, that’s impossible. How can I possibly do that?” I forget sometimes to say, “Well, you don’t do this now. You don’t do this by tomorrow.

You do this in a matter of months, sometimes years.” My own process has taken me … I’ll tell you. I mean I actually really feel like I got into this whole idea of temporal physical placeholders when I read the book, “Getting Things Done.” I mean part of the name of this episode. The book is “Getting Things Done” by David Allen.

I read that in 2006. That was nine years ago. When I read the book, I implemented it faithfully. I mean just follow it step-by-step for at least three years. I was really following the book like a productivity bible of sorts.

Padma: Yes. Well done.

George: Yes. Yes. After the three years of doing that, I started to be able to really customize it dramatically to my own energy and philosophy and process. It’s kind of like I always say kind of martial arts, “Imagine the Aikido master didn’t start out with such amazing rules. The Aikido master started out practicing the very basic moves.” The moves that looks so basic. Some pan gesture, or some movement of the body that’s so basic.

After practicing that for a long time, she starts to be able to use that gesture so naturally in more advanced moves, or to use that gesture in a sparring match without thinking about that gesture. I felt like I’ve been practicing these basic moves. I guess I’ll say, and Padma you can reflect back to me as I say this whether you think it’s a basic move or a more advanced move.

Padma: And also, I just want to say that you make it look easy. The master is what they say is … Once you’ve done something for 10,000 hours, you’ve mastered it. Then, it looks so easy because you’ve done it for 10,000 hours.

George: Yes. Right. Right. So, okay, so let’s get into this idea of the temporal physical placeholder. So I’ve kind of started using this idea because I was talking with a client who was feeling that he was … he had to work all the time. I know I felt that way too. Like, “I should be working all the time on my business because my business is not in the place where I want it, so I should be building it whenever I have free time.” When he’s working on his business, he didn’t know what he should be working on.

I have 10 projects I can work on to improve my business. Which one should it be right now? I don’t know. So this feeling of overwhelm came over him, and this feeling of anxiety that he’s not doing the right thing. So I came up with this terminology of placeholders to say, “Okay. Everything you want to get done, you can get done. Of course, you can’t do them all at the same time.”

So here comes the idea of temporal placeholders, which is imagine you have five projects in your business. I will say what five projects are that are good for most businesses, especially for those who are watching, listening to this. First project, I would say is enrollment. So getting enough clients in your business. That could involve regeneration.

That could involve doing some kind of follow up with people who are prospective clients that could be having prospective client conversations. That could be going to networking events. Lots of things we can do. That could be creating a webinar that gives people a sense of your work, and then making an offer at the end.

So enrollment is kind of a one-nature project that I think most of us need to put a temporal placeholder in the business. The second major project is service development or client experience. I’ll say service development. What I mean there is developing your programs, your products, your services, so creating a package for your services. Another part of this whole service development is the client experience.

Are you looking at how you are improving your engagement with your clients in a way that makes them happy or makes them delighted? Think about the different ways your client experiences you like through your phone call with your client, through your e-mails with your clients, through the exercises you’re giving them, through the worksheets you’re giving them. Try to see how can I improve these things, so that my client has better experience? Developing your service whether it’s your existing service or you’re developing a new service. So that’s service development. That’s the second major project.

The third major project is visibility. I would say free content. Now those of you who know how I work, I believe that the more free content you can give in the world, on social media, on your blog, on podcasts, on YouTube, however you give free content, whatever floats your boat. You need to be continually creating and sharing it. I would say just take a pause here.

Now Padma, you do such a good job of sharing free content on your Facebook profile. Everyone who’s watching and listening to this, you should go to Padma’s – Really, I mean among my clients right now, she probably has one of the most successful Facebook presences. So check out facebook.com/padmagordon, P-A-D-M-A-G-O-R-D-O-N, facebook.com/padmagordon. Really, go there. Watch how she’s doing it. She’s doing really well.

So all of us have a way of creating visibility. All of us, whether you love to write, whether you love to take pictures, whether you love to speak, whether it’s on a video or just via the audio like through a tele-seminar, tele-class, or a podcast, basically it’s text, video, and audio. If you love taking photos, that’s another way of doing it.

Padma: Could I just pause you on one thing?

George: Yes. Sure.

Padma: Also, with like putting yourself out there, visibility, I just want to encourage everyone to just sit down if it’s writing, whichever medium you want to express yourself in. Even if you have nothing to say, the simple act of having this temporal placeholder and actually just sitting down and saying, “Okay. Just seeing creating the space, actually invites your wisdom to flow through. So that’s really my experience. I feel like it engages you in the creative process, and also helps you to clarify what you know, what you know and your ability to express.

George: Yes. Yes. Yes. It’s sort of like you’re practicing your voice.

Padma: Yes.

George: Getting more authentic with your voice. Yes. So I guess I should really say what a temporal placeholder is like. Really …

Padma: Yes. If you say that, it’d be great.

George: Yes. So a temporal placeholder is for example, let’s say you have five major projects. I’m kind of going through what those five are, but imagine that you are working on your business five days a week. Now some of you are working on your business full time, some of you are working on a very part-time basis. Even if you’re doing part time, imagine you could spend 30 minutes on your business, Monday through Friday. If it’s five days a week and you have five projects, you can now imagine what I’m about to say is that “What if you took one project per day? What if on Monday’s you worked on your enrollment?”

So maybe in a half hour you have on Mondays, you say, “Okay. It’s Monday, and I’m working on my business right now for half an hour. Mondays are for enrollment. What can I do to move forward, make some progress in my enrollment?” Even if you’re thinking, “Well, first, hopefully having that temporal placeholder of Monday’s are for enrollment will calm some of that overwhelm that “What should I be working on?” Well, I’m working on enrollment.

Padma: Right. Also, that you’re just working on it on Monday for half an hour. So it’s not like a huge thing. It’s a bit-size piece, and I’m going to focus my attention on this way …

George: Yes.

Padma: … on Mondays for half an hour. It really makes sense. As we speak about it, I feel like, “Oh. My system settles down.” It makes it much more accessible, whereas just having a million projects flying around is it’s very dreamy. I think also part of what I appreciate about you, George, is I feel like you work really, really smart, like really efficiently, and intelligently.

So I feel like you’re giving us with these temporal placeholders, you’re giving us a key to really working intelligently. There’s a kind of a grace, and an ease, and a calm that then can pervade your life because you’re not at all scrambly about what you want to do.

George: Yes. Great. Yes. That’s a really good benefit of it is there’s more calm. There’s more groundedness in the way we do things. So let’s say you were at that half hour on Monday and you know that Monday is enrollment day for you. Well, what should you be doing during that time?

So the question that I would ask if I were in that situation would be “What do I already know will help move my enrollment forward?” Because often times, we don’t trust ourselves because we’re like, “Well, there’s so much I can learn still about what is perfect for enrollment.” But chances are, very high right now, chances are you already know some things that you know are good to do for getting your clients. If you only did them on a consistent basis, you would get smarter about enrollment. The truth is as you take action, the landscape changes.

It’s kind of like, as you walk along a journey, the landscape changes. So you don’t have to know what’s 200 miles away. You just need to know what can you see ahead. Okay. I need to go from this to that hill over there. That’s what I know.

I don’t need to know what’s behind the hill. So I’m just going to walk the hill. Because once I walk the hill, I might realize that “Oh. Here at the bottom of the hill, I didn’t know that there was a stream over here that I want to go to instead. So I’m going to change my direction now to go to that stream because that looks a lot more interesting.”

Padma: Right. What I’m hearing you say also is you take the next step. You have your direction and you take a step. So having the Monday half an hour temporal placeholder gives you “Okay. This is my next step. This is what I’m going to do.” I also hear you talking about trusting yourself.

George: Yes.

Padma: Just doing what you know to do.

George: Yes.

Padma: So that all really feeds your system relaxing. And with something in my experience that’s really amazing is that you do one thing. You’re making this podcast. We’re here. We’re having fun. We’re having conversations podcast.

George: Yes.

Padma: You do not know how life is going to respond to this podcast.

George: Right.

Padma: It’s not a direct cause and effect thing either. It’s that you might do the podcast, and then in six months, you get a call from somebody somewhere that heard about you through a friend who heard the podcast on when it was recorded. You never know.

George: That’s right.

Padma: One of the main things that mattered that what you’re saying is half a circle of placeholders is just consistent action on consistent days, and trust the process. You don’t know that there’s going to be a stream.

George: That’s right.

Padma: You don’t know that there’s going to be a huge field of flowers.

George: Right. Right. Yes. Now that’s great. I love it. Thank you for saying that. That’s a really good piece.

Okay. So that’s one way to do a temporal placeholder is to say I have five projects. I should quickly finish what those five are. So one was Lead Generation and Enrollment. Second one was Service Development or Client Experience. Third one is Visibility or Content.

The fourth one I would say is Self-Care Habits. So for me, that’s making sure of my schedule. Allows me to get enough sleep. It’s also making sure that I have breaks between meetings. Sometimes people forget to do that. They just schedule meetings back-to-back without a break. So they’re out of breath.

Padma: Right.

George: So I allow myself at least 15 minutes before another meeting, so that I can lay on the floor for a little bit. Do some breathing into the floor, and get a drink of water. We forget to get enough hydration sometimes.

Padma: Right.

George: So self-care habits is another temporal placeholder. You might say what you really mean by it’s like a Thursday is a self-care habit day. Well, not necessarily. I mean you could. You could say, “I actually do …”

I do this on a weekend day, on a Sunday. Say, “Okay. On a Sunday, I will look at my habits, my self-care habits.” Just spend 15 minutes to look at, “Can I improve something about my self-care routine?”

Padma: That’s so great.

George: It’s interesting just to have a day where you can take 15 minutes.

Padma: Yes. I love that invitation because then you’re self-reflecting and you’re looking for what’s working.

George: Yes.

Padma: And, how can I improve?

George: Right. Exactly. Just so you all know, I mean what I actually do is I have two days a week that is free content or visibility. One of the days is creating a free course I’m working. I’m always working on creating or improving some free training that I have.

The other days is what I call free help day, which is that’s when I have time that day, I would be answering e-mails from people who are not clients. So helping people for free or answering posts in Our Highest Work Facebook group, or something like that. So that’s what I do. But the fifth one, just to round out the five kind of most of us should think about is Admin or Maintenance. So it’s looking at … I mean all of us have different admin things.

So some of you might say, “Well, am I following up on the people I said I’d follow up on?” That could be cleaning your desk. Making sure your desk is clear, which brings us real quick and I know we’re almost out of time in just a few minutes, physical placeholders. Chances are you probably have some surface in your business or home where you put stuff because you don’t want to forget about dealing with it. So it might be like a bill. You put it here, so you don’t forget to pay it.

Or it might be a piece of mail that you say, “Okay. I don’t want to open it right now, but it’s got to be opened at some point.” Or it’s some book that you’re wanting to read, but it’s just been sitting there for two months. Right? So what happens is these surfaces start to accumulate things that you haven’t made a decision on. You haven’t put away.

So what I invite you, a very simple physical placeholder, is to create a corner of your office or a closet somewhere, a corner of a closet, and label that corner of the closet “To Decide” or “Important, but – Possibly Important, but not Urgent.” “To Decide.” Maybe another corner is “Decide on this ASAP.” The key is to put them out of sight. You might think, “Well, George. Isn’t that out of sight, out of mind?”

No. Once you put all of your clutter somewhere in two piles – Important but not Urgent, and Maybe Urgent, Maybe Important – then you put a temporal placeholder. Guess what? That’s what the admin placeholder can be.

Padma: Right.

George: When it comes to the admin time, to say, “All right. Admin, the first I got to do during my admin time is to look at, sort through my piles to see if there’s anything truly urgent and important.” But that way, you’re not – and maybe you can speak to this a little bit – training your energy by seeing these things all the time.

Padma: Absolutely. I mean I feel like it is really dreaming.

George: Yes.

Padma: It keeps away from your ability to be present because on a subtle level, maybe on a subconscious level, you’re thinking, “Oh. I really need to get to that.” Or, “I have a response to that thing.” Or, like you said, “ I really want to read that book. I have to contact that PR person, or whatever it is.”

It’s suddenly – It’s like these threads. So that all of a sudden, your attention instead of being focused has all these little tendrils going out in all these directions. What I like to do, and PS I’m still working on this. I’m in the process with this, is to be able to focus and to have clear space. So I think this is a really radical and such a simple invitation that you’re making that has profound effects.

I know on the level just of feng shui and the flow of energy. You want to have a clear space to work in, kind of opening your mind. Sometimes if you’re thinking about something we know, okay, just download it. Or, if you’re thinking about something you’re perseverating, just let yourself ramble for two minutes, so that you have that thought in your mind, so you actually be focused.

George: Wow. That’s really good. Actually, you brought up a good question about we’ve talked about physical clutter, what about mental clutter? It’s like I have this idea, what do I do now? Sometimes, a lot of people have post-it clutters. They have a lot of tiny little notes all over the place.

So the way you apply the placeholder idea is if you have an idea, ask yourself. Okay. Let’s say you have an idea about your business. “Oh. I should contact that PR person.” Then, ask yourself, “Which of these five projects, which of the five temporal placeholders does it fit into?” So while I contact the PR person, “Oh. That’s actually about … Well, maybe it’s about visibility. Maybe it’s about enrollment.”

Just make a decision. Let’s say it’s about visibility. All right. Fine. Then, put on a list. You should have a list. The software I use, which is available on the computer or on the mobile phone, is called Wunderlist, W-U-N-D-E-R-L-I-S-T. It’s free.

Wunderlist, the amazing thing is it works on lists. So I have got, guess what? Five lists for my business. So when I have contact PR person item, I put it on the visibility list. Then, now I can forget about it because then when it comes time for the temporal placeholder, maybe Tuesday is visibility day or whatever.

Okay. Tuesdays, all right, here I am working on this visibility. I look at my visibility list in my Wunderlist and go, “Oh. Whatever it is, I can do these 10 things or these 50 things.” But I can just kind of glance at them and say – it’s okay, by the way, if you have a bunch of stuff on the list to just kind of glance from the list and see which one calls out to you because you have an intuition as for importance, or maybe sometimes it’s urgency. You know what? So I feel like I’ve said enough about those things. We should probably wrap up the episode, or is there anything else?

Padma: It’s so great. As you kind of eliminated all of this in such a clear and cohesive way, what I realized is that all of these placeholders, all types of placeholders create a structure. There are various structures. Whenever you have a structure, then energy can flow through these structures. The universe likes clarity.

So it’s like, “Okay. Fast forward ways to go.” So as you create these structures, you give yourself places for your own energy to flow and to invite universal energy to flow in your own structure of yourself, of your body, and your breadth. You can do that in a present and grounded way.

George: Yes. Beautiful. Beautiful. Wow. So I always try to remember to ask my guests the question. Our podcast is called Our Highest Work, and there are as many definitions of what Our Highest Work is as the people who define it. So Padma, do you want to share with us, just from your heart, from your mind, what would you say is your highest work at this time?

Padma: It’s such a beautiful question. Well, My highest work is to bring people into themselves. So I’m thinking really fall in love with themselves, and then love with life. In that, engage with life dynamically, creatively caught with kindness and compassion. So that’s really my highest work, and it can look very practical. It can look very subtle, a full range of things that can occur.

George: Oh. That’s great. I love it. So if people want to follow up with you, Padma, they want to check out your work, how should the people do it?

Padma: Great. Yes, you’re welcome to contact me. I’d love to hear from you. You can look at my website, which is theresponsivebody.com. It’s W-W-W dot the responsive, R-E-S-P-O-N-S-I-V-E, body, B-O-D-Y, dot com. So I’d love to hear from you there.

You’re also welcome to just shoot me an e-mail if you have any questions or want to know more about anything that I’ve shared, or experienced, which is really awesome working with George as a business coach. My e-mail is Padma, my name, first name, P-A-D-M-A, at theresponsivebody.com.

George: Wonderful.

Padma: I’d love to hear from you.

George: Awesome. Well, Padma, you’ve been just a great person to converse with here. I mean I can’t believe this is, you said that this is like your first time or something doing an interview like this. You did such a great job. I just have to say. I hope you’ll do more.

Padma: Yes. It was really fun. Thank you so much for having me.

George: Yes. Absolutely. So to end the episode, I always want to remind you, I want to remind you of who you are. I try to do it in a little different way each time. So this time I will remind you to remember who you are in a much bigger way because you are actually indestructible. Your consciousness is going toward the direction of more wisdom and more love all the time.

Even though sometimes on a daily basis, it’s hard to see it. But in the grand scheme of looking back at your life, you will see, and you’re looking at the grand scheme of your, maybe, multiple lives and your consciousness, you will see the growth towards wisdom and love. You know that you are secure in that direction because you are being taken care of. So until the next episode, I wish you well. As Padma mentioned, “Remember to keep breathing and feeling your body, so that you can be grounded and do things in a present and grounded way.” So thanks everyone.

Padma: Thank you so much.

George: Blessed be your day. Be well.

Hi, This is George Kao. If you’ve been enjoying this podcast, I think you’ll like our community. It’s free to join. It’s online, so you can access it from anywhere. And, there are wonderful people there already. And, we believe in supporting each other’s highest work.

It’s a great place to come and talk about any of the episodes you’ve liked, discuss the ideas and practices, and ask any questions and simply to connect with other supportive people. Come check us out at www.ourhighestwork.com/community. Again, that’s ourhighestwork.com/community, and I look forward to seeing you there. Take care.

<![CDATA[How To Discover & Activate Your Purpose -- Brandon Peele's Purpose Activation Blueprint]]>Fri, 24 Apr 2015 01:57:08 GMThttp://www.ourhighestwork.com/blog/how-to-discover-activate-your-purpose-brandon-peele
For the audio-only (with intro/outro music!) click here or right-click and download the file.

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Links mentioned in this episode:

Brandon Peele's Purpose Activation Blueprint:

The 30-minute Purpose Statement Exercise:

Here's the complete transcript:
George: Welcome to Our Highest Work, a podcast where we are gathering and sharing the best ideas for spiritually based business and life success. My name is George Kao and today, I have a special guest with me. Brandon Peele has been a long-time friend of mine. We’ve actually even been to Burning Man together a couple of years ago. It’s just a lot of fun to have him here with me now because he has been coaching people about the topic of purpose, life purpose, their purpose, for a couple of years.

Now he’s really formalizing this coaching practice and he has written a wonderful guide called The Purpose Activation Blueprint. So, I hope if you are either watching this or listening to this, you’ve had a chance to download it. I will be sure to put the link in the episode notes page so that you can download it if you haven’t already done so.

Brandon is going to talk us through the process. I am going to ask him questions. Anyone who happens to be watching this live can also post questions. With that, I just want to say that Brandon is also co-teaching a course called Man on Purpose. Is that right, Brandon?

Brandon: That’s correct.

George: Yes, Man on Purpose. But, other than that, he’s just a great guy to talk to about life purpose, career purpose. I invite you to reach out to him, if you’re looking for a coach, for purpose. Brandon, thanks so much for being here today.

Brandon: Thank you George. It’s great to be here.

George: I actually went through the 1st step of the blueprint myself. I really liked the exercise, came up with a nice purpose statement for myself. I guess I’ll turn it over to you and you can walk us through it however you want to. I’ll be asking you … peppering you with questions along the way.

Brandon: Yes. Yes. That sounds great, George. That sounds great. It’s great to be here. It’s obviously awesome to talk about purpose.

It’s one of my favorite subjects on the planet cause I do believe it is one of these panaceas, if you will. It really does supercharge every area of our lives. Specifically, over the last… I would say… three or four years, I amassed a trove of research that I call the Science of Purpose.

It correlates living your life’s purpose with every element of the good life. So, it’s correlated with a longer life, living this many years longer, a healthy heart, a healthy mind, better relationships, more fulfilling and profitable careers, a more rich society, a more sustainable economy. It is … I believe we are at the cusp of a purpose revolution. This is something I believe in. This is one of the reasons that Chris Kyle, my co-teacher on this course plan, decided to give away this free e-Book, because we want everyone to experience it. I mean, it is kind of the greatest gift you could possibly give yourself while you’re here, and start to enjoy the benefits: to have a great career, great relationships, great health.

George: Can I ask you something? Let me ask you a little bit more about … well, let’s touch on the relationship and the health piece of it. How does purpose benefit – what is the sort of science shown about how purpose benefits people’s relationships?

Brandon: The primary benefit is that, once you know your purpose, you’re not this unmoored ship floating in the sea next to another ship – you know, your partner. You actually know exactly where you are headed. You know what you care about, you know your values, you know your boundaries. That’s really the key piece. Once you know who you are, you’re able to set boundaries and say, actually, my most important love relationship is myself.

I know my purpose, I know what I’m willing to do, and what I’m not willing to do. That allows us to engage with our partners or our lovers from this place of deep self-love and reverence and saying, “I want to create a life with you, but not under any conditions.” Under the conditions that work for me, and that work for you. It really allows two people to come together from this very solid, purpose-driven, self-aware place of self-love.

As people form relationships, they … they’re just much more solid. It’s not about appeasing the other person, or resenting the other person. It’s about having an open, honest dialogue about who you are as individuals and who you are as a couple.

George: Nice, nice. And, how does purpose benefit our physical health?

Brandon: Oh, that’s my … that’s one of my favorite questions. The hypothesis … there’s a number of studies out there that look at it. It’s linked to decrease in coronary heart disease, decrease in strokes, decrease in depression … What’s the other one? There’s another one out there that has to do with the mind.

But, the general theory is that cortisol, this kind of stress hormone, that we experience when we’re out of alignment, when the person that who know ourselves to be and the person that we show up are two different things, our bodies are under stress. The idea is that the stress hormone ages our cell’s structure, ages our tissues and our vital organs.

When we commit to a life of purpose, it’s like a thread that runs through every area of our life. It gives the whole thing meaning. We are able to endure hardships. There’s a great Nietzsche quote, “If a man knows his why, he is able to endure any what or how.

If you know why it is that you’re committed to doing, say, moving a mound of dirt from one area to another, it’s not, like this damn mound of dirt. It’s like, oh yes. I’m building a garden. This is cool. I know my why. So the idea is that when you know your why, of your whole life, of your career, of your relationships, your body is not being flooded with these stress hormones – adrenaline, cortisol – these things that are just eating away at your tissue, prematurely aging you and then eventually leading to all kinds of serious ailments that will take you out.

George: That’s great. That’s good to understand because it’s been shown … I mean, I think … hopefully it’s mainstream knowledge that purpose certainly helps with your emotional health. I think people … well, it’s been known that when people retire, they don’t feel the sense of purpose from their work anymore. Right? They deteriorate rapidly.

So, I think purpose is for every age. I think especially … I mean yes, young people are seeking that purpose and they have to strive for. But, perhaps it’s even more important for people who are older.

Brandon: Yes, definitely. Actually, I just finished a beautiful book by Richard Leider who is an icon in the world of purpose. He authored a study with MetLife and explored purpose and aging and one of the differences in how people age if they have purpose. He basically found the exact same thing you’re talking about.

If you retire without knowing who you are, your life purpose, you basically die really quickly. But if you retire and you do know who you are, he found that, essentially when you have purpose, it yields a 42% increase in the experience of contentment, a 47% increase in the experience of abundance, a 31% increase in the experience of feeling love. There’s … purpose, like I said … I wasn’t lying when I was saying that it is a panacea. It really does empower every area of life - career, health and relationships.

George: I think it makes a life a lot more fun. Right?

Brandon: Yes, it’s interesting, like you’re playing a big game. It’s not in this tiny area. It’s with your whole life. You completely get to play this super big game.

George: That’s awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Before we go on, I just want to mention real quick, those who are here live, please feel free to comment below the video. Some of you are watching this on YouTube. Some of you are watching this on the Facebook page directly. Please, please, comment below and let me know that you’re here. Any questions you have about purpose, let us know.

I’d be happy, as time allows, to bring those questions on for Brandon to answer. I’ve just a couple of comments already from Karen and Laura, they’re both saying that they’re here and listening in. Thank you so much.

One question I have, and maybe this is going into the blueprint already, is what is purpose? Now, I know so many … there’s actually, one of the questions that I ask all the guests on this podcast whenever I remember to do so is what is their definition of their highest work? I feel like, with purpose, there’s as many definitions as there are people, maybe, or people who are interested in this. But, how are you defining purpose and why do you define it in that way?

Brandon: That is the most important question. What are we actually talking about today? The way I hold it, and this is a definition that Chris Kyle, my co-teacher in this course and co-author of this document and this book, a definition that we settled on, one that took into account the latest psychological research, took into account a lot of our wisdom traditions … on this idea of dharma, or calling, or purpose, or God’s help.

The idea is that purpose is very unique. It’s not just about being a good person. It’s not about being ethical although generally people who have purpose are incredibly ethical because they know who they are at their deepest level. But being in purpose, and this is how we define it, is the act of giving my authentic self, so my true essence, along with my gifts and my talents, to the world, in service of something bigger than myself.

So I’ll crack those a little bit. The way that I think about it and again I think, most purpose frameworks or most purpose coaches or most purpose authors will agree that they generally have these three components in essence, these qualities of who we are along with this more active element. Our gifts and our talents, doing things that feel alive, that feel … that bring us alive, that make us feel united, that make us feel like we’re contributing both to ourselves but potentially to other people, too. It’s an active thing. It’s not just, I know my purpose and it’s this written statement that I look at once a day.

No. It’s actually moving it into the world. There’s this very active component about choosing the types of activities that feel alive with who we are.

In the last piece, is in service of something bigger than myself. A short word for that is mission. It’s where you both understand the world as it is, which is a significant task. To be on purpose, you can’t just be ignoring what is going on in the world. You can’t just stick your fingers in your ears and be like, “Oh, ok. I’m not going to pay attention to how terrible the Middle East is right now, or how terrible climate change is.”

You actually have to know what is going on in the world. The reason you do that is so you can see something that is new or different. You hold a vision for the world that is, that are more whole, or more authentic. The idea is that you combine who you are, your qualities with the things that you love to do, towards a goal, towards a vision of the world that is larger than yourself, and a more generative, holistic expression of the world.

George: That’s awesome. Wow. What a great definition. For those who are able to see the video, I have onscreen – Brandon, can you see this? It’s showing up. Yes? Those who are … by the way, those who are here, I’m just going to ask you, whenever you can, to just let me know in the comments, “Yes, I’m seeing it”, or “How is it going so far?”

You should be able to see on the screen the little three-part circle – gear, actually – that Brandon’s been talking about essence, gifts, and mission. I really like that because it doesn’t leave anything out. Purpose isn’t just about … a lot of people think purpose is just about business or career. But, it’s more than that. Here, you’re bringing in the larger mission of our life, you’re bringing in also our, I guess personality, you might say, or core personality.

Right? How does … how is essence related to personality?

Brandon: That’s a great question. The way we hold essence – and personality tends to have a deeper root in the study of psychology. We can talk about that a little bit. The way we hold essence is that these are qualities that you naturally and effortlessly express. You don’t have to … this isn’t about you trying to be creative.

This is about the core question or core Litmus test is. How do other people describe you when you are just being yourself? For me, they might say, he’s provocative or he’s kind or he’s introspective. For you they might – I’m just projecting onto you, based on what I know of you – they might say caring, supportive, enthusiastic, inspiring. It’s just how other people would describe you and, ultimately, it’s how you describe yourself.

But, oftentimes other people have a better, or, are better able to articulate your essence. Personality, now, this is … again, we are getting into more psychologically complex waters here, but personality generally has to do with your ego structure. It’s all the ways you became who you are, including faults, shadow, triggers. It’s not just about the great things about you, it’s kind of like your life story, in a lot of ways.

What happened to make you the way you were? Generally it comes down to a core wound. For example, I’ve got a core wound around not being worthy of my father’s love, which is of course not true. I am. He loves me, and all that kind of stuff.

That was a wound I got as a child. So, I developed this whole personality structure to compensate for that. I became a good boy. I became a bad boy. I became all these different things so that I could get a response from people. So that I could actually feel affection, feel the attention of others.

Personality structure is much more complicated. Essence is … you can think of it as, if you hold God as a reality, it’s your divine qualities, the parts of the God self that you most easily express.

George: Wow, that’s beautiful. I love the way you put that, that’s really cool. Because it’s sort of the things that … if you strip away sort of all the characteristics that develop as a result of pain and alienation, you are result … what results is your divine essence for this life. Maybe we could even call it your divine personality.

Brandon: I’m comfortable with that word but a lot of folks who, today, are trying to leave the God language out … It’s up to you, really.

George: I don’t apologize for that. I feel like … whatever we believe in and are passionate about, there’s enough people on the net who will resonate with us. Just a quick shout out also to thank you, Anna, for joining us for this as well, and Linda, thank you as well.

So, about gifts a little bit. Please feel free, Brandon, if you want to speed things along, just let me know, but I’m so interested in this stuff that I just kind of dig into it also a little bit. About gifts, one of the most common questions that people ask is, how do I know what my gifts are? We could talk for days about this, but maybe you can give us a little … a few tips or a few little insights, whatever’s coming to you now, on how you might sense that.

Brandon: Yes. Yes. One of the common pitfalls about this step of conceiving our gifts is that oftentimes our critical mind is along for the ride here, and the critical mind wants to make sure that we’re not lying, or speaking untruths. If I was to say, one of my gifts is scoring touchdowns for the Chicago Bears, my critical mind would be like, no it’s not. So all of us have this kind of throttle-thing that says, is that truthful? Yes or no.

But what’s important is that gifts actually, they don’t come with an objective metric. It’s not asking you, say, are you the best teacher in the world? It’s asking you to say, do you enjoy teaching? We’re really looking at it more from the lens of this concept of flow, of being united with the activity of feeling alive when you’re doing it.

For example, I mean, I love preparing for a party. I’m not the world’s best doer of chores. I’m not the world’s greatest sweeper. But, I love that idea of preparing a space for the people. For me, I hold that as a gift.

I feel unified. It makes me feel useful, and I enjoy it. But then, there are some things that I actually, I do pretty well. At least, I get feedback on that I do well like inspiring people, public speaking, writing. These are things that people are like, wow, you’re actually good at that.

But that doesn’t necessarily mean that I only have to include the things that I get good feedback from others on. I could be a terrible singer, but it can bring me joy, and I’m just going to claim it. That’s my gift. My gift is to sing in whatever way I choose to sing even though other people don’t think so.

The beautiful part about gifts, and this is very resonate with this kind of concept of flow, is that they are generative, meaning that every time that you perform them, your gift actually gets more valuable, it gets better. Oftentimes you actually get more mastery. You get a new level of expertise every time you do them.

It’s compared with things that are more gratifying. If I go and eat a piece of pie, yes, that was pleasurable, but I ate the 2nd piece … ah, man … I really didn’t need that 2nd piece. And if I eat that 3rd piece, I really didn’t need that 3rd piece.

Whereas if it’s for me, writing, every time I write I feel like I’m getting better at it, I really enjoy it. It becomes this thing that gets better, and better, and better, and better. So, a gift will have a generative quality to it.

George: That’s beautiful. I love that. That’s really cool. And, I love that you said, it’s not just because when we think about … when I think about gifts, the 1st thing I think about is what do I do that other people value? Other people agree that I’m good at?

But, you’re adding to this, what I love to do as well. And you’re saying that what I love to do in itself has value because I love doing it. It brings me alive. It’s generative.

But also if I love doing something, even if people don’t value it yet, if I keep doing it, I’m bound to get good at it.

Brandon: That’s true. That is true. That is true.

George: That’s awesome.

Brandon: That is the most important piece. Identify the things that are 1st, a contribution to you. Like playing the guitar. If you love playing the guitar, eventually you’re going to get good at it and somebody’s going to be like, “Hey, could you play that guitar again?”

Then, it becomes a contribution to others. It’s supposed to be, initially, a contribution to your self. I’ll give you the perfect counter-example. Early in my career, I got really good at Microsoft Excel. People really liked it when I did it. I got paid a lot of money to do it. Same thing with PowerPoint, but I didn’t care about any of that stuff. I wasn’t like, “Hey, I’m feeling so alive because I’m good at this beautiful [inaudible][22:40].

A gift, you’ve got to enjoy it. You’ve got to feel like, “Wow, this is great.” I’m having a lot of fun, or I’m feeling engaged or alive, or unified, 1st. That is the 1st piece. You’ve got to like it.

George: That’s really great. And, to not be in so much hurry that it generate money right away. I think that’s part of it. I’m not saying you shouldn’t do anything for money unless you love it, it’s just that whatever you do love, make sure you are spending some time doing it so that one day, it could become your livelihood or just simply bring you the color, the flavor and the energy to your life that otherwise wouldn’t be there.

Brandon: Exactly. Exactly. You know that’s a very, very common place I find people stuck in the purpose conversation. They have a conception of what it is that they love to do, but they’re like, “I can’t make money out of it, so I’m just going to sit here and suffer, or numb myself out with booze or media, or whatever it is.” What’s important is that just as you said, George, is that we hold all those areas of life differently.

I’m going to reference a … this is a framework that comes out of a Hindu tantric philosophy called The Four Desires. Out of each of these four desires, you have your purpose, your livelihood, your pleasure and your spirituality. Early in life, before purpose shows up, all of these areas kind of feel separate. There are some things that make you feel joyful, some things you do to put a roof over your head, there are some things you do to experience leisure, and there are some things you do to connect or transcend.

But once purpose shows up, then that integration process begins. It’s important to not think that as soon as you find your purpose, then you have to make a career change. It’s a gradual thing. As you even your purpose, as you express more of your gifts, that career shift will happen organically. Usually, that happens in a very unique way.

People very rarely find their purpose and end up taking … end up finding that the full expression of that purpose is to fulfill a 9-to-5 job. They usually have to create something brand new that allows them to live their life’s purpose and that takes time. It could be a three-year process, a five-year process, for some people.

George: Yes. Yes. Yes. That’s really helpful. Can you mention again what those four were?

Brandon: Yes. It’s dharma, which is purpose basically. There’s artha, which is livelihood. There’s kama, which is pleasure. And moksha, which is liberation, or enlightenment, or spirituality.

George: That’s wonderful.

Brandon: Yes. Yes.

George: So you’re saying when purpose, it becomes clarified, embodied, then those four are integrated.

Brandon: Yes, well, I would say that when purpose becomes clarified, that’s when the integration process begins.

George: Begins, right.

Brandon: That final integration point, or when it starts, it starts when you get to get paid to be who you are and do what you love. That can take three years, five years, that sort of thing.

George: Yes. Definitely. Yes. It’s taken me a couple of years to get there.

Brandon: Amen.

George: Yes, just a quick note from the live watchers. Thank you Barbara, who just wrote that “I’m enjoying the interview. I like Brandon’s verbiage and the way he describes things in a down-to-earth way. I resonate with what Brandon is describing.” Thank you Barbara for that. Let’s go on. I feel like we’ve already spent half the time talking about barely step one here. There are four steps to this whole thing.

The purpose statement exercise … I’ll just say that, those of you who download the blueprint, there’s a button. I’ll show you where the button is. Actually, those who are able to watch the video, there’s a button in the blueprint within step one. If you click on this … actually, it’s not clickable here. I’ll make sure to put the link to the 30-minute purpose statement exercise as part of the episode notes as well because I went through that myself, and I found it very helpful to come up with my purpose statement.

Anything else, Brandon? I’ll just assume that those who watch or listen to this are going to go through that exercise. Is there anything you want to mention on that?

Brandon: I do. I do, actually. George, as part of the great feedback you gave me and the feedback we’ve received from other folks who’ve downloaded the blueprint or listened to the exercise, I actually wanted to be able to read the exercise. George, you went out and transcribed it yourself or paid somebody to do the transcription. We proofed that and we are going to include that in version two of this.

If you sign up, download this. You’re going to get an email saying, “Hey, you get an improved version with the purpose-discovery exercise that is actually written out as well in the appendix.” I, of course, encourage you to listen to it because that is … I find that to be more conducive to writing it. The written version will be there as well.

The other piece is that we also launched a 20-minute, pre-training on going deeper into that step one. We provided four bonus exercises to really deepen and enhance your purpose statement.

George: That’s awesome.

Brandon: That’ll be on the same page as downloading the blueprint.

George: Just to let people know, when you opt … when you put your e-mail address in opt-in to download the blueprint and future updates that Brandon and his team will be sending you. Just so you know, when I got the email, it came from Chris Kyle, Christopher, Chris Kyle. If you see that name, you’ll know that he’s Brandon’s partner in doing this. I had to rescue it from spam, actually. Make sure it doesn’t go to spam. Make sure you look at it, read it and get the updates. Let’s go on to step two, then. Shall we?

Brandon: Yes. Yes. As we all know, no person is an island. Just knowing your purpose statement is great right? But, in order to start to transform your life with it, to begin the integration process that we just talked about, you’ve got to start to bring other people into it. Before we start taking any action, before we start to think about what this is even going to look like, who are you going to help with your purpose, it’s important to build a support team.

The 2nd step is build your purpose support team. The idea is that, very similar to a gardener, you plant a sapling. You stake off an area around it. You weed it. You water it.

You’re constantly paying attention to it in the early stages. Because, your purpose needs a lot of attention, needs a lot of care and support, so that it grows into fruition, so that in two, three, four, five years, you have fully transformed your life and that purpose can kind of stand on its own to weather the elements. It can fend off predators. It can just be its own thing. But, until that point, we’ve got to create the safe container and that’s where this purpose team comes in.

These are, basically, five people who support you unconditionally. What does that mean? These are five people who aren’t attached to you, or your life, looking a particular way. The only thing that they want for you is for you to live the biggest, most fulfilled, on-fire life possible.

These are just people who are in your corner, who oftentimes, especially our family of origin, or partners, or siblings, they can be critical of us. If you’re thinking about including a critical voice into your purpose team exercise I highly urge you to reconsider that because the idea is that you just want people who are going to be supportive. People, who are going to hold the space, hold the container for you to do the rest of this purpose activation workbook, but also start to, as you start to live it, and communicate with them. They’re going to give you feedback. They are going to extend their resources and network to help you live your life with purpose.

It’s a really special team. You’re creating your inner circle of folks who are just here to support you living purposely.

George: I’ve heard it. I don’t know if this is the same thing, but I heard that description of having a personal board of advisors.

Brandon: Yes.

George: It’s kind of like a company has a board of advisors to direct – a board of directors, sorry, board of advisors, board of directors. I’m sometimes confused about that. They basically advise and direct the company to achieve its mission. Right? Here, with your five people, you’re saying, these are the people that will be helping you do that.

When I was looking through this document I thought, you know – a couple of questions I have for you. One, I was thinking about, who might I ask? Would they say yes? What would be the commitment?

I was thinking, what if I asked these five people to commit to three months and, maybe I even create a secret Facebook group for these five people. Call it George Kao Board of Advisors, or George Kao Purpose Team or whatever. Let’s say three months, and all I ask is that you look at this forum 15 minutes, 30 minutes a week. That’s what you’re committing to. Of course, if they’re willing to do that, I would be happy to do the same for them as well, maybe either at the same time or some other, later down the road. What are your thoughts about how to ask, and what the commitment would be?

Brandon: I totally agree with having it be a time-bound ask because, oftentimes these are relationships that have other contacts around them. Let’s say you want to put your wife on your purpose team, she’s not just on your purpose team, she’s also your wife, so you need to make the ask very specific. Say, “Honey, for the next three months, what I would like you to do, is put a little 15-minute block in your calendar to stay on top of my purpose team discussion on Facebook.” Or, it could be, “Once a week, for 15 minutes, I want to have an accountability discussion with you because what I want to do, is that I want to make stretches on my purpose project”, which we’ll get to at the end, “and I just want someone to report the results. Did I do that?

What was the result? What did I learn? What am I going to do differently to help me think about what the next steps are?” Make it not intrusive. The important thing is that you start out with your why. You share with them your purpose statement.

Listen, this is who I am, this is the transformation I am committed to in my own life or in the world or in the environment. And, what I would like, a very tiny ask, what I would like is for you to support me in that.

Here’s what it looks like. It looks like 15 minutes a week for three months. As soon as they get that you’re speaking truthfully and authentically, and that it’s really not a big commitment from them, they’re probably going to be really excited. They’re going to be like, “Wow, that is really beautiful George. Thank you for sharing that with me. I’m happy to support you. 15 minutes is really doable. I’m happy to do more, or whatever it is.”

It’s just that kind of old adage. If somebody is speaking truthfully, from the heart, people just want to help you. That is just the nature of how change happens.

George: That’s awesome. Do you have any suggestions on where to look for these people? When I was thinking about it, I’m like, of course I can think of some local friends, but this doesn’t have to be local. It could be kindred spirits that you have connected with on Facebook and, in fact, I’ll say that those of us who are followers of this podcast, this video channel, Our Highest Work, we have a Facebook group with now just about 500 people in it who are brought together by the values of doing our highest work, figuring out what that is and doing it. And doing it diligently, and faithfully, and passionately in the world.

If you are looking for a potential purpose team, you can feel free to ask, maybe comment underneath this episode and say hey, I’m looking for people for my purpose team. Maybe you could make it a mutual thing and say, “Hey, I’d love to serve on your purpose team and you could serve on mine for a few months and help each other out.”

Any other thoughts Brandon about whom to look for, how do we know it will be good for someone to be part of our team?

Brandon: That’s a great question.

George: You’ve already said how do we know. Whom do we look for? Do you have any suggestions?

Brandon: I would say that the thing that you want most is, identify somebody who is already on purpose. Somebody who really knows the gift of what it’s like to have and live their purpose. They’re just going to be a much more creative, energetic champion for you. Whereas, say, somebody who’s only supportive of you but doesn’t really know the purpose, will do it, because they sense that it’s truthful and that this allows them to fulfill a tiny piece of their purpose by supporting you.

That’s fine too, but somebody who really knows their purpose and the gift of what it means to be alive and in action, doing something – try to seek out those people. I’m sure everyone knows at least one or two folks who are like that, who are on fire.

George: What about, though – there are people we all know, who we might not say that they’re on purpose because maybe they themselves don’t feel like they’re on purpose. Maybe they’re in a job they don’t like or they’re in a relationship that’s not ideal for them or whatever, but maybe they’re good at bouncing ideas with. Maybe they have a gift of seeing into other people’s purpose and seeing other people’s situation. They, themselves, are not so good at theirs. Is that okay too?

Brandon: Yes. Yes. I think that sounds great. I love that.

George: Yes. Yes. I can imagine. Sometimes for me, ironically, I am much better at critiquing other people’s marketing than looking at my own. I always say that people become my clients despite my marketing.

Let’s go on to the 3rd piece of the puzzle, which is to connect your purpose to serving others. Tell us about that. People, of course, can read this. And those of you who are able to see the video, you’re seeing a table, a chart for how to think about these things. Maybe you could just give quick overview, or however you want to say it.

Brandon: Yes. The idea is that – let’s just say that an important caveat to purpose here is that we are not talking about you needing to express the totality of your existence right now, at this very moment. The only thing that the purpose project does and the purpose statement does is get us closer. It’s kind of asymptotic. Over time, with each project, with each time reviews, we’ll say we’re getting closer and closer and closer, a deeper awareness of who we are and what we’re about in the world.

Purpose projects and connecting purpose to serving others, it’s just a place to start. What we want to do here is move our purpose statement into connecting with another group or a cause. What this 3rd step does, it allows you to list groups that you feel empathy with. In the audio exercise, from the 1st step, you are going to identify 10 things in the world that break your heart, 10 things that make you sad or angry. That is going to be the group or cause that you are going to look at.

You’re going to look at all 10 groups or causes and you are going to evaluate them based on how deeply you empathize with them, so like how deep is the heartbreak? The examples that we give here are – we give three examples, war veterans, the obese, and the homeless. How deeply do you care about their issues? For me, I put five for war veterans and obese, and a four for – oh sorry, for war veterans and the homeless and a four for obese. That just reflects my ability to empathize and relate with those groups.

That’s the 1st way you evaluate that group or cause. The 2nd way is the relevance of your gifts. You look at your gifts from your purpose statement and you say, are my gifts of service to this group? For the war veterans, my gifts are very high. It’s a five out of five. Obese, it’s a three, and homeless, it’s a one. My gifts actually have a bigger impact or a bigger value to war veterans.

The last area is relationships. For each one of these groups or causes you may have ties or connections to use in those groups or organizations that serve those groups. For example, I have no relationships with groups that serve the obese and homeless, but I do have relationships with groups that serve war veterans.

What I do is I tally up my rankings for all of my empathy groups and that will give me a quick, back-of-the-envelope standing of where I should focus my purpose. For the time being, I am going to create a purpose project that is going to serve these war veterans because war veterans is going to rank the highest in terms of my empathy, the relevance of my gifts and my relationships.

George: That’s really great. Can you give us an example what you mean by organization? I don’t know if you can share how you are connected to war veterans just so we have a sense of how that works.

Brandon: There’s a number of great organizations that work with veterans. I’m connected with a men’s group that specifically serves war veterans. The Mankind Project, the same group that delivered this, does a lot of outreach with these groups and training with them.

George: Cool. That’s very helpful. Awesome.

The 2nd part of this step is generating possible actions, possible projects. You talk about purpose project. When I was looking at this, I think this needs to be explained a little bit, especially the whole self, purpose, group. Talk us through what this chart means.

Brandon: I’d be happy to do that. Given that we are looking at war veterans as our target group, there’s a number of things we can do to improve their lives. We can do one-on-one counselling, we could start a blog focusing on veterans’ issues, we could do PTSD workshops, we could give some job training, we could create communities. There’s a gazillion things we could do.

You want to just, sort of brainstorm the ideas of project. What type of projects could you do with them? Then, again, you want to start to evaluate them, evaluate these projects – these specific projects – along these four categories.

One is time and effort, meaning if something is going to take very little time and very little effort, you want to rank it highly. Whereas, if it’s going to take a lot of time and a lot of effort, you want to rank it low. The idea is not so much that you need to go ahead and transform this group immediately and for the rest of your life.

The idea is to do something that you can get some more information on, meaning once you do your project, you want to be able to say, did this work for me? Did it use my gifts? Is it a lifetime purpose? Did it serve the group? That sort of thing.

If you can do something quickly, say, volunteer at a one-day event with vets, that’s generally a good thing. Whereas if you, say, you want to write a book on veteran issues, that could take you three years. Then, you have to wait three years to find out if this is really aligned with your purpose or not. The idea is to do something quick.

The time and effort column, you rank that on a one to five, five being the highest, meaning lowest one on time and effort. Then, there’s self, purpose and group. Self is, would you feel served by engaging in that project – on a scale of one to five. Would it feel good to you?

The next column is purpose. How closely aligned is it with your purpose statement? Is it moving the ball forward towards the goal in mind? Does it allow you to express your essence? Does it allow you to give away your gifts in a meaningful way?

The last is, what is the transformation that this project is going to have on the group? Is it low or is it high? If it’s high, then it’s five. Then basically, you tally those up and that tells you how to focus your efforts in your project. What is the project that you are going to start with?

It doesn’t mean that these other projects are bad. It just means you are going to start with this one. After you complete it, then maybe you jump down to the next one. Or, maybe you redo this exercise entirely and pick a new group or rewrite your purpose statement. This is just a methodology to get started.

George: Spend another 30 seconds talking about group. What do you mean by the group score here?

Brandon: Given our group is war veterans, is this valuable to the group? If you spend three years writing a book that could be really highly valuable to that group, assuming that you are interviewing them, helping them see new possibilities, and transformations. If it’s delivering carrot cake to veterans, they like it – they like the carrot cake – but maybe it’s not really getting at their core issues.

George: I see.

Brandon: It’s only a one or a two on a scale of five.

George: Got it. Like here, you have inspiring shirt, which is great, but it’s not compared to the eBook or to the one-on-one counselling.

Brandon: Right.

George: Awesome. Finally, let’s touch for just a minute or two on step four, creating a purpose project and putting it into action.

Brandon: Yes. Bingo. From this list of projects, you want to list out your top three and flesh it out into greater detail so you can see what this project would look like if you were to do it. And then, from that list, you hold it up and you say ok, which one of these feels like it is – which one got the highest score, which one feels most deeply aligned with my purpose, and just pick it. This is not a total, critical-thinking, scientific exercise. This is just intuitively feeling which one you want to start with.

Then, you list your top purpose projects and you articulate what success looks like, usually that’s completing it and learning something. Then you articulate the actions that are going to help you complete it. Steps one through five, what are the five things I need to do to get in action around that? Then, you share this with your purpose support team. They help you create a schedule and hold you accountable to delivering on the actions.

George: That’s awesome, awesome. Can you touch just for a minute on down here it says Next Steps, Resistance, Feedback, New Project. We could probably talk a lot about those things but what do you mean by that, those things?

Brandon: This is also something that is going to be clarified more in the 2nd edition which will be out in the next day or so.

George: Nice.

Brandon: The important piece is that, after you finish your … there is actually two real important pieces after you finish your purpose project. You want to get feedback, and learning. You want to interview all the people who are involved with it, ask them about their experience, get feedback from your purpose support team, and evaluate your own experience, living purposely over the course of the month or two months of your purpose project. You can document your learning. It felt good to do this. This was a pain in the butt, whatever it was.

The next piece is, was there resistance? Were there things that didn’t get done because you didn’t … you couldn’t bring yourself to do them? Resistance is a normal thing. It’s not good or bad. It basically means that we’re trying to do something new, and that part of our personality structure, our ego structure, is resisting us doing that, it’s resisting us showing up purposefully.

That’s where coaching or training programs – where your purpose support team can be helpful, is helping you work through those blocks and those obstacles, those resistances. Yes, I need to write this e-mail, but I’m scared. I can’t.

What the coach does is say, ok, let’s look at that. Tell me more about that. What does it feel? When was the first time you felt that? Is this really just triggering an old wound kind of thing?

Is there a way to reframe what it is that you have to do in the context of your purpose and the context of what you care about in the world?

Basically resistance is understanding where you’re stuck and getting support to get unstuck.

George: Nice. Okay. Awesome. Man, this is exciting. I can imagine a whole movement. I was just thinking, oh man, I’m thinking there’s got to be a website, a movement. How many people can we inspire to create and do these purpose projects? There’ll be example, and there’ll be a tech talk that you’ll give. I’m thinking of all this stuff now.

Brandon: George, and you and I have had a number of these pinball machine moments where you and I are just bouncing off of each other with inspiration. This is our way and I’ve got a whole project very much in mind, with your mentor, three-scale project. How do we get the entire planet to complete a purpose statement? Maybe we could talk about that after the call? Maybe do another call?

George: That’s awesome. Totally, man. I’m game for it. I realize our hour is coming to a close. I don’t have to go in two minutes or whatever, but I would love for you to talk about how people can work with you because I know there are people listening to this right now who are saying, “This sounds incredible.” I would love to work directly with Brandon on achieving this, realizing this.

I know you’ve got two things available. You’ve got one, is the Man on Purpose project. The irony is that most of the people watching the video are probably women, from my audience. But then, a lot of the people listening to the podcast are probably men. So, there are two demographics that we are talking to here.

Maybe tell us a little about the Man on … well tell us two things, if you don’t mind. Tell us one, can people work with you to have you as their coach? What does that look like? And tell us, secondly, what is the Man on Purpose project?

Brandon: I’d be happy to do that. As you mentioned, I am a coach. I work with people one-on-one, and in groups and also coach corporations and leadership teams on getting clear on their purpose and how that relates to their corporate purpose. I live and breathe purpose 24/7 at every level of human endeavor. I really, really love it.

As I was saying, most of my work is one-on-one and it lasts between three and four months. We go through a series of exercises that are mostly based on Tim Kelly’s True Purpose Workbook, which I believe is the best in class kind of the purpose, discovery workbook because it is based on the psychology of this model called the Internal Family Systems.

It’s one thing to do a purpose statement exercise. That’s important. That’s very … that’s crucial. You get to understand your qualities, what you’re good at, what you care about. But then, to actually have the tools to live your purpose, to break up the resistance, to understand your ego and all these different parts, that takes consolidated work. You cannot do it on your own because the person asking the question is the ego and the person in the way of you living your purpose is also the ego.

That’s where a coach comes in and says, “Okay. Well, we’re going to do some exercises that are going to break your ego up into its most important parts. Each of us has got a critical voice, a skeptical voice, a wounded child, an image consultant, a risk manager, and we get to know all of these different parts about who we are, how those parts started, what they care about, and what role they are going to play in our life after we find purpose.”

It’s kind of like this psychological corporate takeover where previously the ego was just competing for voice and mind share. Now, all of a sudden, this voice of soul, this message of purpose comes in and becomes CEO, and whips into shape all the vice-presidents and gets the critical, the critic doing its task, the skeptic doing its task, the image consultant doing its task, getting the wounded child and the risk manager to do their task, but not for their own good. For the good of the whole, which is your life, your soul, your purpose in the world.

So that’s generally what purpose discovery looks like. It’s in a most robust [inaudible][55:38]. Like I said, I believe Tim Kelly’s approach is the most robust, complete, successful in a coaching framework. That’s why I use it. I’ve used stuff from other teachers as well, but Tim Kelly’s is the stuff that I really think is the best out there.

George: Awesome. And then, tell us about The Man on Purpose program.

Brandon: Yes. This document and … there’s a course called The Man on Purpose. This is all part of the Mankind Project. Mankind Project is an international men’s organization that is meant …

George: Sorry to interrupt. I have to say that you, as one-on-one coach, purpose coach, you work with men and women?

Brandon: That’s correct.

George: Those who are gals, you can still work with Brandon. On a one-on-one basis.

Brandon: That’s correct.

George: And, you do it via Skype, virtual, right?

Brandon: Yes. Skype, phone, anywhere in the world, I can coach you.

George: Okay. Awesome. So those of you who are men, or who know men, listen up to this Mankind Project. Go ahead.

Brandon: I mean I also feel like women have just as much to benefit from men owning their gallows and living purposefully because that is what women want. Women don’t want men who are grown-up boys. What they want is a man who knows his purpose. I think it’s just as relevant for men or for women as it is for men.

The Mankind Project is part of this larger movement in revolutionizing masculinity. Moving it away from the strong, silent type of thing – John Wayne, 50s. Evolving beyond the kind of sensitive, new age guy stuff of the 70s and 80s, and really moving it into a place that is at both ends. It is having that strong, warrior energy. Knowing what you care about, what you’ll protect, what you’ll sacrifice for, saying no, setting boundaries, but also being very present to the lover energy like really understanding that who you are in the world is a function of what you care about, what you love. That’s what moves you into action to craft your purpose statement, to live with mission and integrity.

So, the Mankind Project is a very powerful vehicle for doing that. It’s an international organization that initiates men into this new way of being and has these weekly or biweekly support groups where men get to own more pieces of their shadow in places where they are sabotaging themselves, like their relationships and career, their health. They recommit to their purpose, make stretches, and are held accountable to those stretches. They form this tight community of men.

Part of this organization, we said – one of the things we do really well, is create these containers and get men in touch with their shadow. One of the things we haven’t done yet perfectly is deepen men’s relationship to their purpose. Three years ago they started this effort called the Man on Purpose course. It is a live, seven-week course that occurs online. There’s calls, community groups, exercises, and mentors that move men into a deeper sense of their purpose, help them do a lot of that psychological reordering that I just talked about, and then get them involved into a purpose project.

That course starts in May. If you download the blueprint, there will be an opportunity for you to hear more about that course whether it’s for you or for a man you care about who wants to live in greater integrity, alignment, to be on fire with his passion and purpose, and to create a better world.

George: Awesome. Awesome man. That is great. That is great. Just a shout out to one of our commenters, Anna, who has already offered herself to be a purpose team advisor to anyone who’s interested, she says, “I am a natural-born idea-bouncing board. I’m supportive, inquisitive, creative. I have a wide range of business experience, honesty, generosity. I offer myself to be part of your purpose team if anyone’s interested.”

That’s awesome, Anna. Thank you so much. You’re leading the way. Those of you who have been inspired by this episode, please feel free to comment underneath the … on our Facebook thread if you want to also be part of someone’s purpose team, or you’re looking for someone to be part of yours.

Brandon, it’s been great to hang out with you here. Thank you so much for taking your time and energy to sharing this blueprint with us. I know that a lot of people are going to benefit from this. Everyone who’s listening, please you may want to listen to this again because I’m sure you’ll get something or get the nuances that you didn’t get the first time. Most importantly, implement, do the exercise, and let us know.

Brandon is also in our Highest Work Facebook group. Let us know by commenting on this thread your questions, your results, your celebrations, your challenges. I would personally love to see that. Brandon, is there anything else you want to share before we adjourn this call?

Brandon: Yes. If you haven’t downloaded the blueprint, go to purposeactivationblueprint.com. If you want to learn more about me and my purpose work, go to evr1.co. That’s E-V-R-1, number one, dot C-O.

George: Yes. E-V-R, and then the number one, dot C-O. Okay. Awesome, man. So with that, let me end the episode. I always love reminding you that you are taken care of by forces greater than yourself. You’re the destiny of your soul and consciousness is secure.

You’re going to a place of bliss and perfect creativity and complete fulfillment. Until the next episode, keep your heart open and continue doing your highest work diligently and always with compassion. Be well everyone.

<![CDATA[Create Your True Livelihood]]>Thu, 16 Apr 2015 01:40:48 GMThttp://www.ourhighestwork.com/blog/create-your-true-livelihood
Complete Transcript:
Hi. This is George Kao. Welcome to “Our Highest Work”, a video series where we are exploring the best ideas for spiritually based business and career success. Today, I’m going to show you a Venn diagram. You may have seen this floating around the internet. If you haven’t, I think this will be a nice way to summarize what does it mean to live into our career or business purpose.

What they call our true livelihood. I’m going to show you this diagram. I’m going to talk you through a little bit of it, and then I’m going to share with you my thoughts on “If you find yourself in one part of the diagram, how do you then integrate all the other parts?” So without further ado, let me bring the diagram up on the screen. Actually before I even do that, I always want to encourage you to make the best use of this time that you’re watching this video.

As you’re watching this video – well, maybe you’re doing something, some other chore, and that’s great. Keep doing that. But if you’re just watching this, might as well take notes. If you’re going to take notes and you don’t mind having a public discussion around these ideas, why not go ahead and comment below the video. Any thoughts you have, any notes that you’re taking, even if it’s just a quick sentence here, you can write as many comments as you want.

If you enjoy seeing other people’s comments on videos, be the change you want to see in the world and write your comments. So that others can enjoy them and reflect back to you what you said. Maybe if you have a question, you can post it while you’re watching this. So without further ado, let me show you the diagram here. So the diagram is a clever diagram that says that the center part is “Purpose”.

The purple dot is “Purpose.” Actually, I would disagree. The purple dot is not “Purpose”. The purple dot is “True Livelihood”. What’s the difference?

The difference is that your purpose, your life purpose, or just purpose if you want to keep it short, is far bigger than just what you do for money. Hopefully, you could see my mouse now. So well, even if you can’t, that’s okay. Let me talk you through this diagram. First, we usually start – most of us who are watching this are probably more tend to be idealists or visionaries, you might say.

We usually start with what we love to do. Like, “Oh. I so enjoy doing this activity or that activity. Wouldn’t it be great if I could make a living doing that?” Now, not all of you are in that boat. Some of you saying, “I don’t even know what I want to do.”

I will address that later. If you’re not even sure what you want to do, let me address that later. But first, most of us are probably watching this, many of us are starting to think like, “There’s something I love doing. I want to make money doing it.” To get to “True Livelihood,” you need to integrate all four of these circles.

So in no particular order, the second circle is that “The world needs it”. Meaning, not only do you enjoy doing it, but you really believe that if more people saw you doing this or took advantage of your doing this, or I mean, I should say take advantage, but utilized your skill of whatever you love, that the world would be a better place.  So that’s what it means by “The world needs it.” It’s not only an interest, an enjoyment for you, but it’s also a cause for you. That’s why the world needs it here.

If you only integrated these two, this diagram says that the end result is “Mission.” So if you love something and you feel it’s a cause, then for you, you might say it’s a mission. Let’s go to the next circle down here, the bottom circle, which is “You are paid for it.” Actually, no. Before we get there, let’s go to this one, the one on the left. “You are great at it.”

So, it’s not only a skill that you have fun doing, that you believe that the world needs. It’s a cause for you. But you are also really amazing at it. Like, people tell you that, “Wow! You are an expert in this thing that you’re doing,” or “Gosh! You must be a professional doing this thing,” because you get the results that you are saying to people that you can get them.

If it’s an artist, “Wow! Your art’s amazing.” There’s this word here between “You are great at something” and “You love it.” The word here is “Passion.” I’m not sure I agree with that word, “Passion.”  I think that what’s more accurate is to say, it’s more like you’re a “Genius.”

It’s like you’re great at it and you enjoy doing it. I’m not sure if you can think of a word for this because a lot of people think of passion as something they enjoy doing, they love doing, but they’re not necessarily great at it. You have probably known people in your life. They really enjoy it, but you don’t have the heart to tell them that you don’t really think they’re that great at it. So, I think “Passion” is a misleading word.

So, if you can think of another word, let me know the intersection between what you love doing and what you’re great at. Now, the next circle, the one that we haven’t yet talked about, the bottom most circle is “Something you are paid to do”. Now, this is easy to think about. Most of us have had jobs in our life. Unfortunately for many of us, we haven’t enjoyed our jobs.

It’s just something we’re paid to do. It’s not our mission. It’s not our passion. Maybe it’s not even our vocation. So, let me explain these words here.

If something you are paid to do and you feel that the world needs it, so it’s like a cause for you. The word here is “Vocation.” Again, I’m not sure I agree with that word because “Vocation,” people often think of it as something that also calls to you in terms of something you enjoy. This is an interesting discussion, right? So, if the world needs it but you don’t love it, what do we mean by that?

Here’s what I mean. So, let’s say you work in a non-profit organization. So, I love animals. If I worked in an animal advocacy or an organization that’s advocating for better treatment of animals in industry and other places, then I would be paid for it and I would feel like the world needs it. However, what if my boss is really terrible to me?

Then, I don’t love it. What if what they have me doing is work that even if I’m great at it, it’s really boring for me? People say I’m great at it but it’s just boring for me. So then, I would only be at these three circles rather than integrating this one. You see the difference there?

What about the intersection of “Something you’re paid for” and “Something you are great at”? I agree with this word, “Profession”. One example is lawyers. Lots of lawyers hate their jobs even though they may be really great lawyers and may be really doing great work for their clients. The clients love the contracts they do for them, the lawyers do for them, but the lawyers may be bored doing the contracts and they may even be questioning whether the world needs more laws and more contracts. Right?

Whether they believe in what the client is doing. Maybe there are well-paid lawyer doing a very excellent job for an oil company and in their heart of hearts, they’re really an environmentalist. Then, that would be these two circles, “Great at it. Paid for it,” but they really don’t feel the world needs it and they don’t even enjoy the work because it’s boring or whatever. So, I think I’ve talked about sort of the various connections here.

I’ve talked about these four words that are the connections and these four big circles. Now, let’s talk about what if you find yourself in the circle where you enjoy doing something. Let me first start with, “What if you don’t even know what to do with your life?” You’re just like, “Well, I want to keep my options open and I really don’t know what to do with my life.” In that case, you can actually start at any of these four circles and integrate the other three.

Really, you can. Let’s start at if you don’t know what to do with your life, you’re really not sure what you love. Let’s start at this circle. If you have no idea, right? Let’s start at what the world needs.

I mean, that’s where I like to start because as if you know by watching this video series, I really believe in living according to a service. I really think that too many people in our world today are living selfishly. They’re thinking about themselves and what we have learned from the world’s ancient traditions and our own conscience is telling us that if we live a life of service, we will very likely find deep fulfilment and even though, sometimes, a life of service is painful, you might not love it. You might not be paid well for it. Even though, sometimes, a life of service is painful, you will be richly rewarded and sometimes, not in this life, but in the lives to come.

Now, I know some people watching this are going to disagree with me about the spiritual views. Let’s not go there right now. Let’s just say that I do believe that there are many lives to come. If you look at the scientific evidence on the afterlife and reincarnation, I think you, too, will be convinced because most people haven’t looked into the evidence but I have. I fully believe, truly believe, that there are many lives to come and this life is just a drop in the bucket.

So, that’s why I like to start at “The world needs it” because we are the purpose of life is to live a life of service and become better people. Grow in our virtues. That’s how I can very quickly summarize the purpose of life. It’s spiritual growth through service. Not just spiritual growth going into a cave and sitting there and meditating and hoping you’ll grow, but it’s spiritual growth through doing the messy work of working with other people who you don’t like, serving people that may never be able to give anything back to you.

It’s through the messiness of serving that we grow spiritually in patience, courage, kindness, all that great stuff that’s really the eternal stuff, the most longer term stuff. So, I want to start here. So, let’s start at “The world needs it”. So, how do you figure out what you believe the world needs? Well, ask yourself, “What is broken about the world?”

What is broken? Now, it doesn’t have to be world poverty, global poverty. That’s broken. People don’t have enough to eat. It can be.

So it can be poverty. It can be that the environment is being polluted beyond repair. It can be that animals are being mistreated. It can be that many people don’t have jobs and your passion about that. It can be that women are being abused in certain context, in certain countries, right?

It could be war. You hate war and you really think the world needs more peace. It can be that there’s a particular law that you disagree with, a national law that you disagree with. Those are all great, okay? Those are all big, global problems.

It can be education, lots and lots of things to concern about the world. Now, break it down to the everyday level. What does the world need? What’s broken on an everyday basis? Because if you ask yourself that question, on an everyday level, you’re much more likely to come to an answer that you can be paid for, that a product or service can come out of that answer.

What is broken in my everyday life? So for example, this morning, I wake up and I brush my teeth. Now, one thing I’ve always thought, one thing I do regularly is I wash my toothbrush. I wash my toothbrush on a regular basis. And I’m thinking, “Gosh. More people should wash their toothbrushes. People don’t realize how much bacteria there is in their toothbrush.”  

I’m just giving you is kind of a silly example. So, there needs to be a product that keeps the toothbrush clean and actually, we have one. It’s kind of a very unknown product where you put the toothbrush in and ultraviolet light comes on. It’s actually not that expensive. It’s kind of cheap, but it’s kind of like a little sleeping case for the toothbrush that has an ultraviolet light pointing to the brush itself.

I’m like, “That’s such a cool thing! Why don’t more people know about this?” So, here’s a silly example, right? That the world needs cleaner toothbrushes and this product needs to be more well known or made more well known. So, maybe I can get paid for helping them market this product. Do you see, as an example?

Maybe that product doesn’t work very well and needs to be another product that’s developed. So, that’s a silly example, but you can look at your own life as you go throughout the day. What is broken? What doesn’t work as well as it should? Now, when we think about products, it’s actually hard to start a product company or a product business.

I really invite you to think about what’s broken in terms of services. What are people struggling with? What does the world need? What are people struggling with that isn’t being provided enough of out there? The world needs it.

If it’s being abundantly provided, then I’ll give you an example. Let’s say that I think that the world needs excellent Chinese food, okay? I should say, what’s broken about the world’s not in the excellent Chinese food, but really, in my neighborhood, there’s tons of Chinese restaurants. So, the world doesn’t need it from my perspective, but let’s say that the world needs better mental health.

The world needs better mental health but in my city, there are tons of psychotherapists and life coaches. So, the world, my world, the world that I can easily reach maybe doesn’t need more psychotherapists and life coaches, at least in my local area. You see? So, think about what’s broken and isn’t being [inaudible 16:36] enough of that you can reach. Now, of course, if you’re talking about the internet, that means you can reach the whole world, right?

You could reach everyone online, okay? So, what is broken in terms of services that’s not being provided enough of or not being provided in a way that you think it should be provided that the world needs? So, in my case, for example, I think that so many people are struggling with not having true livelihood. Not having enough clients in their business or not knowing what kind of business to get into that’s ideal for them. The world clearly needs that but there are tons of business coaches.

There are tons of marketing coaches, right? So, the world doesn’t really need another business or marketing coach. In my perspective, the world needs a business or marketing coach that is truly spiritual, who isn’t just using the word “conscious” or “Authentic Marketing” or “Ethical Marketing”. They’re not just using those words to sell you and they’re still using hyped up tactics, manipulative, deceptive things in their emails or whatever. So, I think the world desperately, in my opinion, I think what’s broken is business and marketing coaching is broken in that it’s not honest enough.

Even the people who use the word “honest” or “spiritual” or “conscious” are not really doing that. So, I’m here to fulfil that need. So, there’s a need in the world, okay? There’s a need in the world. So, let’s start there. And then now, the question is, “Do I love it?”

Well, let’s see. Which direction should I go into here? Let’s go in this direction. So, do I love it? Do I love it? So, find the need.

So, find what’s broken and that’s not being provided for in some important way that you want to provide it. And now, the next question’s, “Can you do it in a way that you love it?” Now, what does this mean? There are many ways you can solve that problem. So, if you look at what you enjoy doing, you would do things you would use the skills you enjoy using to solve that problem.

If that problem needs to be solved in other additional ways, partner with other people. I’ll give you an example. I love to talk, right? I love to coach. It’s just something I really enjoy doing.

So, I’m going to be talking to people and coaching people on truly spiritual, truly honest marketing. So, that’s how I’m combining these two circles, okay? Now, the world also needs written materials about truly honest, truly spiritual marketing, but I don’t love to write. So, therefore, I’m partnering. Actually, at this very time, I’m partnering with my friend, Mirror Living.

She’s one of the members in Our Highest Work as well. I’m partnering with her. She is a great writer. So, I’m talking the ideas out. I’m doing my mind maps and then she is going to be taking my mind maps. Of course, I’m outsourcing my transcription of my videos on my Honest Marketing stuff.

So, Mirror, my partner, my friend. Excuse me here while my wife comes in and my puppy goes crazy for a second here. See, this is a raw, live recording. Okay. So, I’m partnering with someone who loves to write to get the written materials out because the world needs the written materials in addition to my talking and my one-on-one coaching. You see the difference there? Maybe, I partner with someone else who is great, who loves to program software to get a mobile app out there about honest markets.

So, you see how just because the world needs it doesn’t mean you have to do all the activities to serve that need. You do what you love and the some other stuff you love as much. Let’s keep going. Now, you have to be great at it if you’re going to make it your true livelihood. Otherwise, people will not have the heart to tell you that you’re not good at it.

Seriously, because you love something, people are going to be supportive and say, “Wow! It’s so great that you love it. I hope that you do well with it.” Most people, well meaned people won’t have the heart to tell you that you’re not good at it. So, what you need to do is you need to constantly be in the mode of “How can I improve what I love to do?”

How can I improve it? That’s called deliberate practice. Deliberate practice. I will be putting some helpful links I can underneath the video after I’m done recording this to show you about deliberate practice. So, get amazing, alright?

Get amazing in what you love to do and, really, the main way to get amazing, to do deliberate practice is not just to do it in your own living room but is really to do it in the real world. Do it for other people so that they can give you feedback. Now, whether or not they pay you, do it as much as you can. Use that skill as much as you can whether you do it volunteer or whether you do it for pay and keep asking for feedback. Like, “Hey! Am I doing a good job?”

Tell them, “Please be honest with me on how I can improve my service,” so that you really get more out of it. If you need to, create an anonymous survey using Google Drive. Using Google Forms, you can just go to Google Forms. Go to Google and search “Google Forms” and read about it and create a free survey online where you don’t ask for people’s names so they can be anonymous and you send that survey to your clients or to the people you’re volunteering for to say, “Hey! This is an anonymous survey.

I would love for you to fill this out. I’m sending it to other people I’m working for. Please fill this out and let me know honestly how I can improve so I can become really great at this thing that I’m doing for you.” Finally, “You are paid for it”. Okay, you are paid for it.

So, how do you get paid for something you love doing, you really believe the world needs, and that you are great at? Well, actually, if you get great at it, very chances are it’s not going to be hard to get paid for it because people will start spreading the word. Generally speaking, if you’re great and amazing at something, people will spread the word about it and you’ll start getting paid for it. Now, I’m assuming. Now, here’s the thing.

I’m assuming you are making an offer to say, “Hey, I offer this skill at this price.” If you’re offering a service, I really recommend that you do packages rather than only be hiring hourly. So, what I mean is try to sell your client to say, “Hey. Rather than hire me hourly, you can get a much better deal at hiring me for a package of 10 hours, a package of 20 hours, a package of 40 hours.” Of course, the more they buy, the more discount they get versus your hourly rate or vice versa.

You should make your hourly rate higher, so that people can still hire you hourly. Then, to get your hourly rate that you’re really happy with, you sell them packages. That make sense? I mean, sorry. Let me say that again.

Come up with an hourly rate that you would be fine living at, an hourly rate you’re fine living at. That should be your package rate. That should be your basic package rate, maybe 10 hours. Sorry. Your lowest package rate, maybe you sell a package of 40 hours. If they buy a 40-hour package, then the hourly rate is what you’re really happy. You’re really fine, minimal, living at.

Then, the other packages bring your hourly rate higher up. So that if people are hiring you per hour, then they’re really paying you more than you need, but the reason they’re paying you more than you need is because they’re only hiring you for an hour at a time. There’s no jobs if you’re already there. You see? That make sense? I bet as I’m saying this, my transcriptionist is thinking, “How can I charge for the package?” I hope so.

You’re a great transcriptionist and you should charge me for package. So, you might be asking yourself question, “Well, I’m really great at something. How come people aren’t spreading my packages?”  Well, let me be the one to tell you because I’m saying this to all of you generally.

If you are offering packages and people aren’t spreading it, there’s one of two reasons why they’re not spreading it. It’s either because you’re really not that great at it and they don’t have the heart to tell you. Most people won’t, unless you ask them or unless they take an anonymous survey. They’re willing to take an anonymous survey. You’re either not great at it yet, or the world doesn’t really need it.

You might think it’s broken, but other people don’t think it’s broken. You see what I mean?

The people you’re reaching out to don’t think it’s broken and don’t think it needs to be fixed. So, work on one of those two, either become great at it so people will spread the word or really pick a problem that people think is broken so that you can be selling the world really, really needs. Okay?

I’m not saying, don’t sell anything for 10 years while you become great at it. Then, start selling. I’m just saying, keep getting better at it as you keep making the offer. Okay. But the other thing is, let’s say you are great at, you’re reasonably good at it.

You enjoy it. The world needs it but you’re not getting paid doing it. Well, what I recommend that you do, therefore, is observe your niche mates who are making a living doing it. Your niche mates are, some people call them “competitors”. I prefer niche mates.

These are other businesses that are getting paid for doing the thing that you want to do. Okay? That can encompass the top three circles. Observe how they do their marketing. Observe how they’re making a living doing it and emulate the things you like about it.

You can probably find three, five, 20 niche mates. Look at all 20 niche mates’ marketing and write down what you like about their marketing and emulate that or you want to make sure that you’re emulating people that are actually making a living doing it. It’s hard sometimes to know whether a business is actually making a living or whether they just have a nice website. It’s really, really hard to tell. I’ve noticed that lots of people, I have a lot of clients who come to me. They have great websites but they’re not making a living and nobody knows that.

They look like they’re making a living but nobody knows that they’re not getting any clients. So, the only way, really, to know that they’re really making a living doing it is either they say it publicly. Like, “Oh! I’m so grateful that I have a full roster of clients now,” or you talk to them. Say, “Hey, I’m kind of getting to this industry. I would love to ask you, ‘Are you really making living doing this?”

It’s like, “Is it possible?” You know? If they’re willing to talk to you or be honest with you, that’s great. Or you talk to someone who knows them to say, “Hey, do you know that person is really making a living doing that?” Okay?

So, let me see what else do I want to talk about. Okay. Let me say one more thing about “What if you don’t know what the world needs?” Right back to the start, like what if you just don’t know what the world needs and the whole exercise I told you about, looking for what’s broken. Maybe that’s not working for you.

Well, okay. I should say it. Do both. Make sure you go through your day like, “What is broken that needs to be fixed by some company, some organization in the world?” Right?

But particularly from the service, what’s not being provided enough of out there? Not being provided in some important way that I feel like should be provided? Okay. But the other thing, that’s one exercise, your own observation and your own journaling. The other exercise, I highly recommend you do this.

Figure out what the world needs is to talk to as many people as you can about what you think is broken about the thing that you think is broken and observe their reactions. Are they also going “Yes! Yes! I also think that’s broken,” or are they like, “Okay, that’s interesting.”? Right? If they go, “Yes! Yes! I think that’s broken, too,” then, you’re on to something.

Talk to as many people as you can about the thing you think is broken, okay? And then, keep tweeking what you think is broken until you come up with something where, as you talk to people in this area, they keep going “Yes! Yes! I agree with you. That’s really broken and something needs to be done about that.”

That make sense? Okay. Alright, let me give you one more scenario. What if you are being paid for something that you don’t love to do? So, some of you out there have jobs or had businesses that you don’t really love and you want to have something that encompasses all four circles.

You want something you love, that the world really needs, that you can become great at and want to become great at, and that you are paid well for it. How would you do if you’re in the “You are paid for it” circle only? Let me say this. Don’t throw out the baby with the bath water. Please, if you’re in a job that’s filling your financial needs and you need that job, you need those finances, please don’t just quit if you don’t have a nice financial buffer up at least one to two years.

Okay. If you have a financial buffer of one to two years, and I think that, yes, if you quit and you are diligent and you’re willing to work hard and diligent at doing all four of these things, chances are can be good that you can make a full time living again doing what these four things are within a year. But even so, if you can get some coaching around doing it, you will ensure yourself to be able to do it faster. Generally speaking, don’t quit your job. Instead, use the funds from your job.

Use your income to fund the development of doing the thing you love. What I mean is basically, still do your day job and, by the way, even in your day job that you don’t like, you can learn to make it more tolerable. You can learn to have more internal ease in your day job. You can actually learn to love it. Just look at this video channel, youtube.com/ourhighestwork, this very video channel. Look for, I think it’s episode 50 something about finding joy in your daily work, okay?

Look for that. I will try to remember to link it in the notes for this video as well, but you really can come to a tolerableness and an ease even in a job you don’t like. There are ways to love what you do and you don’t like the people there. There are ways to find out how to keep doing your job without having to work with those people as much.

You can. Okay? So, don’t throw out the baby with the bath water and quit if you need those finances if you don’t have at least one to two years of buffer, of living expense buffer. Next, schedule non-negotiable time to work on this thing that you love by following the steps that I’ve talked about earlier in this video, okay? Alright. So, again, that’s really important.

What I mean by non-negotiable time is after you come back from your work day, your job that you don’t like, what are you using your time for in the evenings or the weekends? Most of us don’t use our time very well. If you are serious about doing your true livelihood, you need to be serious about how you manage your time. If you keep managing your time the same way as you always have been, you’re going to keep getting the same results you always have been which is you’ll be stuck in a job you don’t like. So, you’ve got to be saying, tell yourself “I am now willing to do something different so that I can get a different result. I’m now willing to be more excellent at my time management so I have a good chance at actually actualizing and realizing my true livelihood.”

That make sense? So, I think I’ve said enough for this episode and I really hope that you have found this to be beneficial. Let me know in the comments section, if you’re willing to, or you can contact me privately. Let me know what you appreciate about this episode. What idea really is something you’re going to try to apply?

So and also, I recommend that you join our free Facebook community to talk about the ideas in this episode or to share with people how you’re trying to implement this episode. Let us, the community, support you in that. So, until our next episode, remember the cosmic truth that you are loved more than you realize. You are cared for more than you can currently see. You are cared for, that your destiny is in perfect condition.

Your destiny, where you’re going to end up, is perfect understanding, creativity, and love. So, until then, until the next episode, be well. Keep your thoughts positive and keep your heart open.