So you’re really fired up about something. You feel like you’re finally living out your purpose, at least some days, in some ways. That’s so great! You want to welcome your friends, family, coworkers, and even the stranger behind you in line at the coffee shop into your purpose, but where do you start? How can you get someone to care about something that feels SO important to you?
I’ve felt this way so many times, and I’ve learned a lot from this feeling of wanting other people to ‘get it.’ The first step is maybe reframing this question of how can you get someone to care about something, to a more inclusive, open-ended idea of, ‘How can I share my passion with others in a meaningful way?’ or ‘How can I engage with others in a way that invites intentionality and purpose into our lives?’
Bringing others into your Purposeful Hustle is a process, and the goal isn’t necessarily to make other people have the same purpose as yours but to create an opportunity for them to connect with their own purpose and to live into it. Because after all, when more of us are living in our purposes, we’re all better off.
These are three essential ways I have learned to create opportunities for Purpose to show up in the lives of those around us:
Gather the knowledge.
If you want someone else to know about a topic, an issue, a situation, a potential solution, or any other subject related to your purpose, the first step is getting educated yourself. Do your homework, and know what you’re talking about. Read up, know your facts, and be humble enough to admit what you don’t know. This will make you seem more credible, authentic, and trustworthy. If you want someone to learn about something you’re passionate about, do the hard part of figuring out what book or article they should read, what resources they should tap into, or what organization’s work they should be following. Show them that you care enough to help them access information related to the topic you’re so fascinated by. That way, you have a common language to discuss the topic together.
People crave substance. They crave purpose, but sometimes in the busyness of the day, it’s easy to put what really matters on the back burner. Sometimes people feel isolated in their purpose. They might think they’re the only ones who have big questions about that thing that’s been keeping them up at night. Purpose thrives in community. When you create space for people to feel safe and welcomed to be brave enough to talk about what matters most to them, they can realize - alongside other people - that they’re not alone and that they CAN live in a way that is aligned with what they care about. We all just need a place where we can talk about the big things and can process our questions together. A young woman I’ve worked with and mentored over the past few years created this kind of community in her college house, and they actually called it Space. These kinds of spaces can take shape in so many different ways for different people: hosting a dinner party, starting a book club, grabbing a cup of coffee, going for a walk, or however you choose to gather your people. Creating space and place to talk about purpose is the first step to drawing out that inspiration in ourselves and in each other.
We all connect more to a person, a concept or an idea when we can experience it in some way for ourselves. If you want your friends to care about your purpose, plan an opportunity for them to experience an element of what makes you so passionate. Bring them to an event. Take them on an excursion of some sort, to a place they’ve never been. Introduce them to people who are doing this work you care so much about. There is so much power in the invitation, “Come with me.” There is so much power in showing up. We as people are intimidated by what we don’t know, and a trusted friend offering to go with you to a new event or a new place can make all the difference in how you see and interact with the world. My friend and a colleague I admire, Adam Carr, facilitates these kinds of experiences for people all the time in an effort to create a connection to, a community within, and a care for the city of Milwaukee. He leads “bus tours” throughout Milwaukee where people can visit places of historical significance, small businesses, and hidden gems. They can eat food they haven’t tried, meet artists, entrepreneurs and community organizers, and hear about a place from someone who lives or works there. There is an element of appreciation and relationship that can only come from firsthand experiences, so the more we can do to create these experiences for the people we love, the more likely it is we’ll find opportunities to embrace purpose with them.
If we want our crew to hustle with us, it’s on us to do as much as we can to make purposeful opportunities available and accessible. The work is SO worth it because when more of us are living in our purpose and feeling connected to each other’s well-being, we all get to live in a better place. And the hustle is more fun with our friends by our side!