Defining Your Why: How to Make an Impact

The idea of impact is embedded in our culture and affects everything we do

What type of impact do you want to have? Who do you want to impact? What changes need to be made to have that impact? Questions like this provoke quite a bit of thought and feelings. They challenge you to reflect on your core principles and determine whether you are being true to them.

The idea of impact is embedded in our culture and affects everything we do.

My wife and I recently celebrated our 11th anniversary. We reflected on our last ten years of marriage together. It was everything we had planned and prioritized. We worked hard and sacrificed, moved into our dream home, experienced success in our careers and had a beautiful son, Jameson. But, somehow, it felt like we missed the mark on something. We were right where we wanted to be, where we had planned to be, but it didn't feel quite right. Why? Where did we go wrong? What could we have done better?

Impact, we didn't start with impact. Sure, we thought about it from time-to-time in loose terms, but we didn't stop to define it for ourselves. We didn't prioritize it. We didn't create a plan to cultivate it. We cannot get that time back, but even if we could, we wouldn't necessarily change anything significant. What we can do now is focus on our future. If we genuinely want the next ten years to feel different than the last ten, we need to dig deep and think about our why so that we can prioritize the impact we have. 

For me, I've broken it down into four areas: 1) family, 2) community, 3) career and 4) myself. The next step is to more clearly indicate what type of impact I want to have in each area and develop a plan to bring it to fruition. Breaking it down in this way makes it feel more attainable.

If you haven't already, start to define your own why. Start to think about who you want to impact, the type of impact you want to have and the changes you may need to make. And don't forget to write it down. It is all too easy to get caught up in the day-to-day and to confuse motion with progress.  As Yogi Berra says, "If you don't know where you are going, you might not get there."

This article is intended for general informational purposes and does not constitute a recommendation of any type. Please seek advice from your tax, legal, and financial professional prior to taking action. Securities Offered through Destiny Capital Securities Corporation, member FINRA/SIPC.

Aaron Leatherwood, CPA, CFP, CWS, MS is a Client Wealth Strategist for Destiny Capital. Leatherwood builds relationships with his clients by learning about them as well as their families, priorities, concerns and the impact they want to have on the world. He then partners with his clients to help them achieve their desired outcomes. 

Categories: Human Resources