Mission Statement. Manifesto. Mantra.
February is coming to a close (although it’s exciting that we get a Leap Day this year!) March is the last month of the first quarter of the year, how are you doing on those awesome goals you touted about in January? Just to be clear, this is a NO JUDGEMENT ZONE. This post isn’t to haggle you about your goals, I’m just checking in and to possibly present a solution that my help.
The other day I came across a wonderful quote while I was reading that stated:
“Respect your life enough to pursue a meaningful mission. Respect yourself enough to give yourself something to do.” -Iyanla Vanzant
This quote really struck me because often we just drift through our lives working, paying bills, working, paying bills, working, paying…well you get the gist. And every year you vow to do it differently and yet we somehow slip right back into our safe and unproductive zone. We were definitely created to be more than worker drones. I’ve referenced Beyonce’s song I Was Here before and if you’ve never heard it I suggest you give it a listen. This isn’t a command from a Bey-hiver (I like a few of her songs, but that’s as far as it goes) however it is worth the listen to ingest the message of doing something significant to show the world you were here. It would be a shame to have lived and no one knew it.
To help you leave a mark on this world it would help if you had a mission, something you you want to pursue. It would be even better if others were well served by your mission. So let’s start with a mission statement, which is defined as “a formal summary of aims and values for a company, organization or individual”. This statement identifies your mission, briefly describe how you will carry it out and who will benefit from it. This mission statement can be for a company you’re starting, a book you’re writing or simply a statement by which you’ll govern your life. I co-founded a non-profit for single parents and our mission statement is “R.O.K.S. – Raising Our Kids Solo is charged with assisting single parents by providing emotional support and tangible resources to help them manage family life without a partner.” Short, sweet and to the point. It states who we are, what we’re doing and who benefits.
Next is your manifesto. This is the emotional counterpart to the mission statement. It talks about your core values, emotional priniciples, what differentiates you from what others are doing, what you believe in and what you’re willing to invest to accomplish your mission. It’s basically a written pep rally created to excite, ignite and get you energized about what you’re trying to accomplish. Dig deep for this but have fun with it.
The last thing is your mantra. This is your statement or slogan that you repeat to keep the mission before you. Don’t be overly clever with this, make sure it’s clear, concise and impactful. For example, the mantra for my single parent non-profit it “Single by circumstance, Parents by choice”. Straight and to the point.
So whether you’re starting a revolution or rebranding your life, come up with a mission statement, manifesto and mantra to help you get clear on what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. Type them up on pretty stationary, laminate them and post them prominently where you see them every day. Don’t waste another minute not working on your “I Was Here”. Pursue a purposeful mission. Respect yourself enough to give yourself something to do.