So since I had a post about getting lost, I think it's appropriate that we should talk about how to get back on track. When we're physically lost, we look for landmarks that we may recognize, like a tree or a particular road sign or a familiar store, depending on where you are. The best landmarks are up in the sky. The sun always rises in the east and sets in the west. The stars can provide cues to get us back on track as well.
In much the same way, it's easy to get caught up in the day-to-day of our hectic lives and lose our way. It's helpful to have a landmark that we can rely on when we get lost. For me, that is my personal mission statement. Who am I? What am I doing? How do I deal with others? When I'm in the middle of a confusing situation, an ambiguous moment, or an opportunity to try something new, I go back to my mission statement to get my bearings.
"Aren't mission statements something that companies have?" you ask. Sure. Companies have turnover and new people come in. The mission statement is the company's way of ensuring continuity.
As people, we don't have to worry about continuity, but it's easy to get pulled in different directions nowadays. It's easy to forget where you want to go, what you want to do, and who you are. That's where having a personal mission statement comes in handy. It's a roadmap that you create for yourself.
And it's an interesting exercise on its own. How often do we take the time to really meditate on what we want to accomplish? Without knowing this, we're just fluttering around aimlessly from situation to situation. Without a long-term vision, you don't know if you're going to get where you want to go. It's like trying to hit a bulls-eye without seeing the target!
Try it out. The next time you lose your way, you'll be glad that you left yourself a trail of breadcrumbs...