The New P Word
A few months ago I read a blog, by a now great friend of mine Rebecca Tapp. Becs is in year 2 of her start up, The Supernova Tribe. An exclusive management agency for speakers who are changing the world. In this blog, which you can read HERE, Becs asked the question - is the word purpose going out of fashion? Was it a buzzword from years ago, and is it losing propensity the more we use it.
That question has been rolling around my brain for a few months, and I think my answer is yes, the word purpose is losing it's gravity. But why do I think that? Particularly with my generation, the word purpose seems to need to be connected to anything for us to engage. We need purpose in our work, purpose in what we watch, purpose in what we purchase and purpose in our plans for us to deem it "worthwhile". Now, while this is debatable, and as always I remind you that we're human, and that whilst generationally we will see nuances that occur and common threads, you're never going to be able to put everyone in a box. This promise of purpose = fulfillment doesn't ring true for every millennial. But unpacking this a bit further, I believe there's another P word that drives us to find purpose.
So what do these two P words have in common? Perspective and Purpose. My logic here is simple, which could indicate it's flawed, so please comment away! But the reason I think these two are so linked is that if we have perspective we find purpose because perspective justifies our existence, our participation.
Looking at this in a work sense, after all that's what I like to talk about....work...if I have the perspective to see that me updating the media database at work (holla for anyone that's ever held a junior role in marketing/PR/advertising...this is actually one of the worst jobs ever) actually allows our comms manager and PR manager to do their jobs 10 minutes quicker, by now not having to search through their old emails to find the contact details for that journo that once did a story on us...all of a sudden, that menial task, has purpose attached. Now it's up to me to decide whether or not I think this "purpose" is important enough - but the task definitely has purpose, and taking a moment to understand the perspective starts that process.
This whole chain of thought actually underpins what we do with Young Hands, and the ride that I'm sure you read about late last year in Thailand. Our whole motivation is to create experiences that gives young people the perspective that illustrates just how significant their lives are, and their ability to impact the world around them - to create experiences that give purpose.
So what's the takeaway in today's collection of thoughts? Take the time to remind yourself that everything you do has a grander perspective than it currently seems. The world is but a complex ecosystem where every one thing is connected with another - even when you're simply updating the media database.