Finding Your Purpose and Core Values

core values

What’s your purpose? Do you know?

In the last chapter of “Peak Performance” by Brad Stulberg and Steve Magness, the authors noted the importance of transcending ourselves when it comes to purpose: “When we concentrate deeply on something beyond ourselves, our ego is minimized. A large part of our ego’s role is to literally protect our ‘self.’ It is our ego that tells us to shut down and flee when faced with threats. When we transcend our ‘self’ and minimize our ego, however, we can overcome the fears, anxieties and physiological protective mechanisms that so often hold us back from achieving major breakthroughs.”

They explained often this helps us overcome our greatest fears, and helps improve us our performances in everyday things. “Just ask yourself – are you more likely to give something your all if you know doing so will benefit someone else or a greater cause?” wrote the authors, noting nearly every top performer they asked this question to said yes. By focusing on others or a greater purpose than yourself, it can often help us do the unthinkable. Keep that in mind as we talk about your purpose.

So why should you care about knowing your purpose? And I am talking about even more than just for your campus recreation center. What about your personal purpose? Do you have one of those?

Well, first off purpose is powerful, as the authors mentioned: “Purpose fosters motivation; motivation lets us endure a greater perception of effort; and enduring a greater perception of effort often results in better performance.”

Having a defined purpose can help fuel you, day in and day out, especially in mundane tasks. How do you go about defining your core values?

In the last chapter, the authors challenged the reader to draw up and evaluate their core values. They gave a list and asked you to select the five core values that matter the most, that help dictate your actions and behavior.

After this, you can write your purpose statement using your core values. It can change overtime – and it probably will – but it would be great to start somewhere. The authors encourage refinement and then putting your purpose to use.

So campus rec professional, what’s your purpose? What defines you? Take 20 minutes today and figure out your top five core values, writing a short sentence about each. From there, write your purpose. You’ll be surprised at how motivating it can be.

Heather Hartmann is the editor for Campus Rec Magazine. She can be reached at heather@peakemedia.com.

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