The Two Sides of Why
Updated: Apr 7
In our past blogs, we talked about the importance of knowing your “Why” behind what you do in personal and professional life, how to find your “Why,” and why Maryanne and I do what we do at IE3.
Why do we cover so much about knowing and living out your “Why,” you ask?
Here is why: When you know your “Why,” you can live an authentic life. You can take this insight and understand your purpose—Why do I volunteer? Why do I parent my kids the way I do? Why do I cherish some friendships or relationships and leave others behind? Why do I make the choices I make? Why are some values important to me? Why do I feel the way I feel in a certain situation?
Sometimes our “Why” is a healthy and life-giving one. For example: I am here to nurture and support my family; I am working on making an impact on the lives of my neighbors; I want to share what I have learned with others; I want to help those who are struggling, etc.
Of course, there are times when our “Why” may stem from past hurts and traumas: I am avoiding pain; I am protecting myself from getting hurt; I am worried I will not get my share, etc.
It is up to all of us to take a deeper look at where our “Why” is interfering with our values and goals and where it is enhancing them. Is there a relationship that you struggle with? Do you miscommunicate with someone all the time? Do you get angry in certain situations and don’t understand why?
This is a time to go a bit deeper, think about what triggers you and where that might be coming from. Once you understand what your “Why” in these difficult situations is, you will have the insight you need and the power to change it!
How can you change your negative “Why” to a positive one?
Think about the kind of “Why” you want to bring to a particular situation or relationship. What would be a better “Why”--how can you rephrase it, so that is transformative to you and the person you are dealing with? For example, you can take your “Why” of I need to protect myself and change it to I am open to having a relationship with this person and maintain our mutual dignity by tapping into empathy for both of us. OR take your “Why” of I have to be right in order to matter on this team and rephrase it to I am willing to listen and learn from others and build mutual respect. That is transformative!
1. What relationships or situations do you struggle with in your life?
2. What is your “Why?” in these situations and relationships?
3. How can you use this insight to change your “Why?”
4. How will you practice bringing your new “Why” into life?