LEVEL 7: ENDURANCE
just came back from meeting a client. The client has discovered what their purpose is or rather, they have found the path to their purpose. They are now in the process of "Owning" it. Their approach though was wrong. This particular client wants to start earning from their first gig of purpose at the earliest convenience. This is where we all go wrong. The fact that you have unearthed what your purpose could be and you have or are adding value does not mean that you will make a killing out of it at the first ask. There is need for endurance, serious endurance at that. This makes this level of purpose pursuit perhaps the most critical (and you will notice I have been saying this same thing about each level haha!)
"No horse gets anyone anywhere until he's harnessed, no steam or gas drives anything until it is confined, no Niagara ever turns anything into light or power until it is tunneled, no life ever does great things it is until focused, dedicated, and disciplined".
A friend of mine who is a founder of a Startup that helps people plan and act on preparation for retirement shared on his Facebook page a very interesting graphic.
The Adjusted Startup Curve
This is the "Adjusted Startup Curve". I am sure you get the message. I could not have put it better than this graphic here. The point is simple. There will be serious ups and downs with your purpose pursuit. Notice that the timeline on this graphic seems to indicate that you will spend more than half of the life of the dream before you can start on the ascendancy. Also, notice that there is an initial surge of enthusiasm with your gig, albeit briefly (few weeks to at most one year). This is a very dangerous time because it is absolutely easy for you to give up. And that is why endurance is absolutely critical. This is where the attitude of endurance and tenacity ought to kick in. That great teacher who ever lived taught us an incredible concept about endurance. You see, Endurance is not just a function of stamina. It also is a function of knowledge and preparation. In other words, The more you are informed and the better you are prepared, the longer you are able to endure.
Building It Up
Jesus Christ said the following:
“Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it?...Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Won’t he first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand? If he is not able, he will send a delegation while the other is still a long way off and will ask for terms of peace. 33 In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples".
Discovering your purpose is not enough, you have to build it. This knowledge is important for you to grasp. Purpose does not come to you fully formed. You have to work it out. You and I know that through the process of working it out, you will experience myriads of issues, problems, heartaches and disappointments. There is no guarantee anywhere that after you have discovered your purpose, everything will fall into place. If anything, once you have discovered you purpose, that is where the journey begins. You need to start building it up.
Counting The Cost
Fortunately, we have an idea of how you can be able to endure during this crucial face. The very first thing that you need to do in order to increase your level of endurance is to count the cost. Put in other words, you need to make massive preparations for your purpose to mature. You will most definitely need to plan. There is no way that you will deploy your purpose fully if you are not a consummate planner! You can take that to the bank. Dr. Myles Munroe puts it better when he says,
"Planning is applying purpose to time"
Let's go back to the case in point of my client who has discovered their purpose. When counting the cost, what they need to do is to understand that the crowds will not turn up in droves the first day. By the way, chance are that the crowds might very well turn up on the first day. That though is by no means the correct yardstick of measuring impact and progress. Your impact and progress is measured over time. So what my client needs to do is to count the cost in terms of how much she will have to plough in and even lose in the initial stages of the month.
Going for The Long Haul
John Lee Dumas has become my mentor. He is an avid podcaster. In sharing his journey in podcasting where millions of people listen to him each week, JLD acknowledges that it was not straight forward to get to where he is right now. If I read him correctly, it took him more than six months of consistency before he started seeing the impact and fruits of his labor. Therefore, the very first year of your "Startup" has to be counted as if it is the year of obscurity. Take a seed for example. When you plant it in the soil, you would not expect it to sprout the following day. And even if it did, you would not expect it to start giving you fruits the following week. The same happens with your purpose. There is need for endurance, lots of it before your purpose comes to fruition.
I worked as a service provider for Safaricom when they were experimenting with the concept of sending and receiving cash through the mobile phone. M-PESA is now a household name that has built careers of thousands of people. The Mobile Money concept has now taken root in Africa and Asia and is spiraling into Europe. But having been in the oven where all the initial things were happening for this "Startup", I can tell you that Safaricom "went all in", not counting the profits for the initial years. If anything, once the potential of the business was seen, the "investment" that Safaricom put into their product which is now a behemoth phenomenon, they were not counting the profits. These guys went in a reckless abandonment with their project. You know, I have worked in three different countries over the same product, but I am yet to see a Telcom Company that measures the "Counting the Cost" aspect of endurance like Safaricom did. No wonder.
Let's keep these thought up with the next article.