The Personal Mission Statement (revisited)

The personal mission statement should be easy to remember, easy to recite, and easy to measure.

Followers of this site know I wrote about the search for a life personal mission statement in a 4-part series (there was a 1.5 article too) beginning here in September 2006. I never finished the series because I never felt I had a good handle on the whole mission statement thing.

I realize that sounds strange, but the suggestions from the resources I used left me feeling high and dry. I would put together a statement using the tools I found and read them without proper emotion. I couldn’t get attached to anything I wrote. I probably should have written a closing post at the time containing that information, but didn’t. My bad!

The personal mission statement should be easy to remember, easy to recite, and easy to measure. I think Corporate Missions Statements should also meet that criteria, but most I’ve read don’t. The last CMS I saw hanging on a wall was a challenge to read with no possibility of easy recitation. It was about four paragraphs long, filled with general platitudes. “We will be the best … do the most … scream the loudest …” I bet no employee or manager could recite the CMS without referring to the poster on the wall.

A year later, I feel I have grasped the concept and have developed my Personal Mission Statement is. Are you ready?

Having fun, serving people!

A mission statement I can remember, say to myself when needed, and capturing what is truly essential in a PMS. Goals, short, mid, and long range can fit inside this statement, setting the mood for not only today, but the rest of life.

Having fun, serving people!

It’s a PMS that changes meanings with a change in punctuation. With the comma, it contains two complimenting statements, and without the comma, a statement of life.

Having fun, serving people!

Having fun serving people!

Two personal mission statements in one. That speaks to me in a lot of ways. I GET IT! It guides actions and thoughts, attitude and service, myself and others.

Having fun

Having fun doesn’t mean laughing at everything that passes my way. No rather, quoting King Soloman in Ecclesiastes 3:22

And I have seen that nothing is better than that a man should be happy in his activities, for this is his reward …

Life is too short to hate what you must do every day, whether it’s your job or your boss. This has limitations, but with wisdom, I believe the concept is true. Notice also, it doesn’t offer any guarantees, but simply states that “nothing is better” for a man. We can continue to trudge along in misery, or choose to have the attitude of happiness.

This may not mean quitting a job, simply changing an attitude. Choosing to be happy results in happiness, as we’ve all witnessed. The opposite is also true … choosing to be whiney and miserable, also allows you to succeed.

I think it was Henry Ford that said, “whether you believe you can or believe you can’t, you are right.” Our mental attitude can be a strong motivator or a strong de-motivator. It’s our choice to make.

Serving people!

Serving people is my main purpose, behind serving God. When I can help someone, it allows for the first part of the PMS to be true. When I am actively doing something for people, I am having fun … it’s just that simple.

This covers my wife, friends, customers, bosses, co-workers, etc. There is no limit to who I should serve, each in their own way. Think about it. It takes everyone into account.

The opposite is also true. When I am selfish and concerned only with myself, I am not happy. I see others struggle with this same problem, focusing so much on self, thinking it will bring happiness, and of course, it doesn’t.

Having fun, serving people!

Having fun serving people!

What do you think?

More on Reputation

InvespBlogI toyed with the idea of doing another cast on Reputation, addressing what to do if your reputation was damaged. It appears it won’t be necessary. Linda Bustos of GetElastic wrote that exact article, guest writing at InvespBlog.

Her article titled, Common Reputation Management Issues and How to Address Them, covers the material in depth. She discusses online tracking, online rebutals, and other methods to manage your reputation.

Reading Linda’s article makes me to believe we are on the same page with the management issue. If you remember from the podcast, I said you can’t manage your reputation because of its definition. Your reputation is what someone else thinks about you, which can be out of your control. What you can do is influence your reputation by offering a positive choice, which is exactly what Linda advises.


This week’s topic is Reputation. How important is your reputation? Can you manage it, or just be aware of it? Do you realize you don’t have full control over your reputation, because it’s what others think of you? Building a positive reputation can be done, but takes thought and discipline.

How do you repair a damaged reputation? That will be a topic for another day, but my main advice for this week is, “be a person of your word.”

This is the fourth cast in our new series, Live the Dream, which is a year of introspection. Who are we, and how can we make ourselves better? Are you taking the journey with us? The motivation is to be the new and improved person we dream of.

This series is harder to put together, and it’s harder to look inside to see the truth about some of these problems. It’s a learning experience for me, and I hope one for you, also.

Music By

John Korbel
David Henderson

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Calling All Extreme Leaders! Freebie Ahead

Steve Farber, good friend, author and speaker extraordinaire, has a free offer that will make a real difference in your life. He is offering readers Extreme Leadership: In Pursuit of the OS!M, that normally sells for $49.95, FREE! Three hours of audio content with a total cost of a double opt-in subscription.

This is typical of Steve, giving more than you expect, then exceeding even that by a few levels. Steve is the author of two books, The Radical Leap, and The Radical Edge, which you can pick up at Amazon.

Here is a brief documentary on Steve that will show you a little about his leadership philosophy.