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Your WHY, Your Prerogative.

Updated: Apr 23, 2020

“Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes”. - Carl Jung

I’m fully embracing this time in isolation as a means for personal introspection. When this is all over, I want to have a greater understanding of who I am & what is truly important to me. By identifying my values, my ‘WHY’, I can make deeper connections, live with more passion and purpose.

Think of life like a game of musical chairs. The music has stopped & we’re all scrambling to find a seat. The sudden stillness is forcing us to question our choices. You may be desperate to get back to your job, or you may be wondering why you were doing it in the first place.


Simon Sinek, author of the book ‘Find Your Why: A Practical Guide for Finding Purpose for You & Your Team’, writes about how it is only when you understand your ‘WHY’ that you become more capable of pursuing the things that give you fulfilment. The discovery of your values acts as a point of reference for all your actions & decisions from that moment on, allowing you to measure your own progress and level of personal success.

I, and I know many of you reading this, suffer with frequent bouts of anxiety because we consistently feel like we should be doing more and that we are failing if we are not doing enough. The current circumstances are unprecedented, but global pandemic aside, we all, at times have encountered feelings of inadequacy or experienced imposter syndrome. We compare ourselves to everyone around us and if we’re not living like they are, then we must be doing something wrong.


When I look around at my peers, some are published authors, others have hosted events with hundreds of attendees, some have many lucrative side hustles, have mortgages and sponsorship deals. I’ve often wondered if there is something wrong with me because I don’t necessarily want those things. I want to do more, but I’m not financially driven. Sometimes I’ve poked fun at myself about it, but deep down I’ve often felt insecure that maybe I’m just not as driven as everyone else is. I’ve asked myself, how can I be a successful entrepreneur, if I’m not driven by money and status?

Now, I am confident that I could write a book, I could host events, put on workshops, design my own activewear line, create a mass-market fitness plan or even start a podcast. I know that I COULD do all of those things, but I don’t necessarily WANT to.

If you know me, you know that I love what I do, but I equally love my freedom and my own down-time. My number one love language [1] the way I like to receive or experience love , is ‘quality time.’ That can be quality time with others or with myself. If you’ve not discovered your love languages, I highly recommend taking the quiz.


I recently completed the Enneagram Personality Test, which I highly recommend taking. “The Enneagram is a personality system that aims to reveal how emotions drive our lives and how we engage with others in an effort to get what we want and need." [2]

According to my Enneagram report, I’m predominantly a 'Type Two'. In a nutshell, Twos enjoy giving their time and energy to people. They use their ability to understand and motivate people to achieve great things, yet on the flip side, Twos struggle to recognise their own needs, can get over-invested and overextend themselves. They spend so much time looking after others that they forget to take care of themselves. Most Twos have trouble saying ‘no.’ This might sound familiar to you. If not, take the test and read your report. I’ve never read anything more accurate in my entire life!


I struggle with setting boundaries and at times find I’ve taken on more than I can really handle. When I don’t have enough time for myself, I get frustrated and angry. I almost resent what I do because I’m desperate for some ‘me time.’ The famous quote from Eleanor Brown “you cannot serve from an empty vessel" couldn't ring more true.



The point I’m trying to make here, is that time is my personal currency. Making more money isn’t a compelling enough reason for me to lose more of my time.

So now we come to my LIGHTBULB moment. This is the lesson that I came across, which has changed the game for me. The concept was taught by Dean Graziozi, multiple New York Times Best Selling Author, creator of multiple 9 figure companies and one of the best real estate educator and marketers in world.

Dean describes two types of entrepreneurs:

Lifestyle Entrepreneurs and Achievement Entrepreneurs.

Achievement entrepreneurs can have a personal disposition to achieve something bigger and difficult. They have an inner motivation or inclination to accomplish something innovative and of importance to attain feelings of self-accomplishment and satisfaction.

The business dictionary describes a lifestyle entrepreneur as “an individual that creates a business with the purpose of altering their personal lifestyle and not for the sole purpose of making profits. A lifestyle entrepreneur focuses more on the life rewards provided to people that enjoy and have a passion for what they are doing.

I immediately identified with the description of a lifestyle entrepreneur. Right from the word go, I chose personal training and self-employment because I wanted more freedom and flexibility, it wasn’t for financial gain. Now, the important thing to remember is that neither of the above is the right or wrong way to be.


In the past, I’ve certainly had to justify that despite not being financially driven, I am still ambitious. I want to achieve a lot, I want to play with the big dogs and leave a legacy. I’m still an achiever even if I don’t go after money, fame or status. Ultimately, my goal, my vision, is to reach my own level of what I define as success. So what is my definition of success? It is working on my terms, giving myself permission to focus on other things that are important to me, and not just work more to make more money. It is living a fulfilled life abundant in time, adventure and quality experiences. It goes to show that you can still want to achieve great things, but be a lifestyle entrepreneur.


KEY LESSON What I have taken away from this, is that I have been able to discover one of my core values. I have found a ‘WHY.’ That value is freedom, it is quality time, the ability to do what I want, when I want and with the people I care about. Time is a non-negotiable for me. When I am in conflict with this value, when I feel I don’t have enough of it, I am at my worst. When I live in accordance with this value and make it a number one priority, I thrive.

Now that I have been able to acknowledge this value, I have a point of reference for everything I do going forward. I will make more intentional choices for my business, my career and my life. I will inspire others to invest in and work with me based on that principle. I will know, when to say no! I will work with purpose and clarity and when I show up, be 100% invested. I will live with integrity.


Understanding my ‘WHY’, my ‘personality type’, my ‘love language’ not only makes me more self-aware, it gives me deeper motivations and that what’s needed for me to stay fulfilled, balanced, and inspired to keep going when times are hard.

If you have to be honest with yourself, are you always in pursuit of bigger and better things, or are you working hard so you can create, enjoy and maintain a certain lifestyle? As I said before, one type of entrepreneur doesn’t outweigh the other, but your chosen attitude will directly impact your approach to life and business.

IN REFLECTION

The times when I have felt guilt for not doing more or envy at others who are doing more, is because I’ve not understood my ‘WHY’ or my motivations deeply enough. The whole time, I’ve been a lifestyle entrepreneur watching achievement entrepreneurs - and in reality, our goals and motivations are entirely different.

We’re all motivated by different things, which is great and necessary, but we need to get clear on where our motivations are rooted, we need to discover our ‘WHY’ and then make sure that we’re working striving towards our own definition of success and not basing it off of anyone else — especially if our motivations are entirely different!

As Theodore Roosevelt stated, "comparison is the thief of joy." If we focus on our values, our goals, our vision - speak our values as our language, we will live more fulfilled lives.



[1] The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate is a 1992 book by Gary Chapman. It outlines five ways to express and experience love between romantic partners that Chapman calls "love languages."

[2] The Enneagram Personality Test defines nine personality types, each with its own set of strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities for personal growth. Your Enneagram type reveals what motivates you on a very deep level, and illuminates the path you must take to achieve a higher level of self-actualisation.

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