I spent the better part of one morning last week with a man my wife calls "The Body Whisperer," which I think is a nod to Robert Redford's film, The Horse Whisperer.
Mr. Whisperer has an insane ability to diagnose and treat various ailments and injuries suffered by athletes, both professionals and novices alike. He is single-handedly turning my old ski accident injury into a thing of the past. The guy is unlike anyone I've ever met; it's as though he can see right through your skin and figure out what's not working, and why.
My blog a few weeks ago (Find it. Use it.) was about finding and using our natural gifts. I'm always interested in how people find theirs, and so I asked him how he ended up in the enviable position of earning a living by sharing his amazing gift with others. He responded, albeit a bit shyly.
"I have a mission statement," he said, which he started working on back in his twenties.
"A personal mission statement?" I said. "That's so interesting. What is it?" I was more than familiar with the corporate version, which typically says something about providing good customer service and increasing revenues for shareholders. I figured his was something quite different.
In the interest of privacy I won't reveal his personal mission statement here, but it was so compelling that I wondered about my own. Or more accurately, my lack of one.
Over the years I've recited a mantra on an almost-daily basis that reminds me of my life's priorities, and which has -- over time -- become reality in every respect. It's been a veritable wish-list for living. But my friend's mission statement was something more. It was something he had spent time working on and thinking about and which had become the foundational underpinning for making important decisions in his life. A beacon, he called it. Whenever he found himself in a quandary, or wandering this way or that along life's path, he turned to his mission statement for guidance as a trusted and reliable reset button.
So I figured it was probably worth a minute or two out of a busy week to actually think about what a guiding light for life might look like. Mine probably goes something like this -- I will live a healthy and joy-filled existence in which the importance of positive connection with others remains paramount. Not perfect, but at least it's a start.
Now go ahead. You try.