Many large companies have a mission statement. Corporate mission statements are designed to drive the direction of the company, to provide a written promise to their customers, and to be a reminder to every individual within the company to uphold its values.
This year, I’ve created my very own personal mission statement. It was such a powerful exercise for me that I just HAD to share my process with you in hopes that you will create your own personal mission statement for 2016.
WHAT IS A PERSONAL MISSION STATEMENT?
According to author Stephen Covey in his book First Things First, a personal mission statement is a way of “connecting with your own unique purpose and the profound satisfaction that comes from fulfilling it.”
A personal mission statement is a way to formalize (in writing) your goals and your values. It is a way to express not only who you are, but who you want to become.
It’s important to note that a mission statement is not meant to be set in stone forever. Our values may change over time, as well as the direction we want to take in life… and that is perfectly OK! Creating a personal mission statement does not mean that you are “stuck” with that philosophy or plan for the rest of your life.
In fact, most experts recommend revisiting and reassessing your mission statement on a regular basis. I, personally, intend to review and rewrite my mission statement at the end of each year to see how I can improve or change it.
A well-crafted mission statement will help you to learn more about yourself, express yourself more clearly, and shape your way of life. If you keep it fresh in your mind on a daily basis, it will help to guide your decision making in every aspect of your life.
CRAFTING YOUR PERSONAL MISSION STATEMENT FOR 2016
When you start to create your personal mission statement for 2016, there are a few things that will help you narrow down your focus.
>> 1. Determine Your Character Strengths & Values:
There are a few questions that you can ask yourself here to help determine your strengths and values:
- What do I want from life?
- What are my values?
- What am I good at?
- How do I want to be remembered?
To help you determine your Values and Strengths, I put together this little worksheet. Simply click on the image below to download it right away, no strings attached :)
>> 2. Get Inspired by Others:
While creating your personal statement, you may find yourself staring at the blank page wondering “What the heck do I write?” Don’t worry. I did that too!
Here are a few mission statements from some folks you might recognize:
“To be a teacher. And to be known for inspiring my students to be more than they thought they could be.” – Oprah Winfrey
“To have fun in my journey through life and learn from my mistakes.” – Sir Richard Branson
“To use my gifts of intelligence, charisma, and serial optimism to cultivate the self-worth and net-worth of women around the world.” – Amanda Steinberg
“To constantly be striving to be the best version of myself—in my job, with my health and fitness, with my relationships with family and friends, and with my emotional well-being.” – Katie Arnold
Still not sure what to write?
Try a Mission Statement Builder, like this one from Franklin Covey. I went through this exercise while crafting my personal statement, and here were my results:
I am at my best when I get a good night’s rest and wake up early to start my day.
I will try to prevent times when I’m tired, groggy, and uninspired.
I will enjoy my work by finding employment where I can inspire others to live their best lives.
I will find enjoyment in my personal life through yoga, meditation, and living the best life that I can.
I will find opportunities to use my natural talents such as helping others, writing, goal setting, and art.
I can do anything I set my mind to.
My life’s journey is one of overcoming struggles and becoming a better version of my self every day.
I will be a person who has helped to change the world for the better by helping others to achieve the greatness that is within them.
My most important future contribution to others will be my enduring support. I will lead by example, becoming the best version of myself that I can be, and inspiring others to do the same along the way.
I will stop procrastinating and start working on:
- Developing an exercise routine.
- Investing more time into staying in touch with friends and family that live far away.
- Taking more time for myself to relax and unwind every now and then.
I will strive to incorporate the following attributes into my life:
• Contribution • Inspiration • Compassion
I will constantly renew myself by focusing on the four dimensions of my life:
• Yoga • Meditation • Personal Development • Connection
While the results here are WAY too long to be considered a mission statement, I felt that the exercise really did help me to hone my focus. It gave me a great starting point to craft my very own statement.
>> 4. Things to Remember:
- Keep it simple
An effective statement is short, concise, and to the point — usually only 3-5 sentences long. Although the exercise from Franklin Covey was a great starting point, I knew that I had to narrow it down to something short and easy to remember.
- Keep it positive
Do your best to avoid using negative language in your statement. For example: Instead of “Stop procrastinating”, try re-phrasing that to “Be more proactive”
- Make it emotional
Remember that your personal mission statement is, well, personal. Find ways to incorporate words that evoke positive emotions and outcomes.
MY PERSONAL MISSION STATEMENT FOR 2016
After a lot of soul searching, scribbling ideas on post-it notes, and rearranging them until I was happy with them, I came up with the following personal mission statement for 2016:
“To live each day with courage, compassion, and curiosity; to become a better version of myself each day, and to inspire others in my path to do the same.”
So tell me: What will YOUR personal mission statement be in 2016?