Until you start something that really matters to both you and the world, you probably won’t be living as fulfilling of a life as you could. Here’s a simple framework to do just that.
Gather All Your Ideas – Evaluate your ideas by scoring 1-10 to what degree you would love doing each of them. It is so important to do something that you love, that is important to you.
Use Your Skills – Examine to what degree would each of my ideas allow me to exercise my skills. You will be more motivated to succeed if you are using the skills you love and are good at.
Make a Positive Impact – Examine to what degree would each idea make a positive impact in the world. It doesn’t have to change the whole world, it could impact a single person besides you.
Challenge Your Best Self – Examine to what degree would each idea challenge me and require me to show up at my best? As humans we get fulfillment out of doing what encourages us to show up at our best.
Achieve Your Goals – Examine to what degree would each idea help me to achieve my life goals.
Anybody can start something that matters, whether that’s a new business, a new movement or a new cause. And until you do, until you start something that really matters to both you and the world, you probably won’t be living as fulfilling of a life as you could. And the good news is, is today.
Hi, my name is Eric Partaker, and I’ve been recognized as an award-winning entrepreneur and the CEO of the year. And I’m also the author of two best-selling books, including The 3 Alarms. Now, I wasn’t always living a life where I felt like I was doing things that really matter. At the start of my career, I was a consultant. I worked for McKinsey & Company and although the work was exciting and I really enjoyed it, and I learned quite a lot, I didn’t feel like I was doing something that really mattered for me. And I wasn’t entirely sure how much it was doing for the world. But then I got my next role where I joined Skype in its very early days and helped build up Skype before we sold it to eBay, and suddenly I tapped into a whole new level of fulfillment. I felt like I was doing something that mattered. Our tagline at the time was, the whole world can talk for free.
And it really sparked this new fire inside, this revolutionary attitude. But while I joined Skype in its very, very early days and helped build up that company from its infancy, I still wasn’t really doing my own thing. And it wasn’t until I was really working on what I do today, where I’m helping entrepreneurs and leaders and just individuals close that gap between their current and best self that I suddenly felt like I was doing something that truly, truly mattered.
Now you might think that you’re not capable of doing something that matters, but you’d be dead wrong. You might think that, “Well, what I do doesn’t really have much significance for the world, so it can’t possibly matter,” but you’re probably not thinking correctly either. Here’s the thing. If what you do or if what you can do can positively impact the life of just one person, then you have the chance to do something that really matters.
So that, for example, means if you’re a mother or a father, or if you just look after someone and if it’s just one person that you’re trying to make life better for, then you are doing something that matters. So let’s dive into the framework, a five point framework that can help you start something that truly matters. So the first thing is to just collect all of your ideas. You probably have a ton of things that maybe you’ve thought of doing in the past, but never have gotten around to starting, or maybe you attempted it and maybe you failed at it. And you’re thinking, “Well, should I restart that or not?”
So, first step is to just gather all of those ideas. It could be starting something on your own, it could be starting something again with someone else. Recommitting, as I said, to something you’ve done in the past, but just collect all of those ideas. And then the first thing I want you to evaluate all of those ideas against is to what degree would you love doing all of those things. Each of them individually, to what degree would you love doing it? And just score it. Score it one to 10. 10 is like, “Oh my gosh, I can’t possibly love doing this thing more.” One is, “Why is it even on the list?” You would hate it. So a one is bad, but just score it one to 10. A five is, “I could give or take this. It doesn’t really matter,” but go ahead and rank all of those things from one to 10 individually. To what degree would you really love doing it? And why do we start with love? Because the things that we love to do are meaningful for us, right?
That means that it really matters. So the more we love it, the more we would consider doing it, but it’s not the only thing that we want to consider. We don’t just want to do things that we love because there’s other factors involved that make things meaningful for us. So the number two factor that you should be scoring all of these ideas against is to what degree would each idea allow you to exercise your skills? And why do I say that? Because human beings, we like to use our skills. We like to use our talents. It’s exciting. It’s fun to get better and better at things and then to be able to demonstrate that skill, demonstrate that ability. So once again, take each of those ideas and then just ask yourself, “To what degree would this idea, if I started this, would it allow me to utilize and showcase my skills, my talents?”
Then number three thing that you want to be looking at is, to what degree would each idea make a positive impact in the world? And like I said at the start of the video, this positive impact need only positively impact the life of a single person besides you. It doesn’t have to be change the whole world, save the planet, because then there’s not that many meaningful things that we could be starting and things can get quite scary. So it doesn’t need to be on such a grand scale. As long as it’s positively impacting the life of just one other person, that could be something that matters. And you might be in a very unique position to be able to create that impact. Once again, if you’re a mother or a father, who else could have that positive impact than you?
So maybe the thing that you want to start that really matters and that example for you is a recommitment to your role as a mother, as a father, just as an example. Or it could be a business idea that you have or a new venture you want to start, or perhaps a community that you want to form. But just simply ask yourself with each and every one of those ideas, one to 10, to what degree would me starting this or restarting it, have a positive impact on the world?
The number four factor that you want to look at is what I call challenge your best self. Let me explain. We love, we enjoy doing things. We get a lot more fulfillment out of doing things that are going to encourage us to show up at our very best, that bring out the best within us, that allow us to become the best version of ourselves. So it’s a little bit different from what I said earlier about talents and skills, because I think of those things as pretty much things that you already have and that you want to kind of incrementally improve.
This category is looking at each of the ideas and asking yourself, to what degree, one to 10, would each of these things challenge me, require me to show up at my best? And once again, why is this important? Why does this matter for determining something to do that really matters? Because our natural inclination as people is we want to become the very best version of ourselves. Think about it. If I gave you the opportunity to become the best version of yourself, all you had to do is press a button, wouldn’t you press the button? Of course you would. There’s nobody on the planet who wouldn’t. So it’s a natural universal principle within us to want to become the best that we’re capable of being.
And then last but not least to determine whether or not you should start something based on, could it really matter? You want to look at to what degree, one to 10, could each of these things help you achieve your life goals. Whether that’s financing your education for you or someone else, or maybe it’s creating or buying that home, or being able to enroll in that course or program. But rank each of those ideas to determine how much they really matter for you. One to 10, based on their ability to help you achieve your life goals.
And I’d love to hear from you. So don’t forget to leave a comment and a rating as well. And if you’d like to get a copy of my new book, The 3 Alarms, please head over to my website at ericpartaker.com. That’s E-R-I-C, ericpartaker.com, where you can pick up a free digital copy of my new best-selling book, The 3 Alarms.