!Find and do the work you can't possibly not do
One of the things I found in common to most social entrepreneurs is the urge to influence, to make the world a better place, to make an impact. These are people who had a well paying day job and a more or less a nice career before their enterprise's adventure, but it wasn't enough. Driven by that urge, that need, that passion, they left everything and went to make their dreams, for themselves and for others, come true. These kinds of people are an inspiration to me. Scott Dinsmore is one of that kind.
Turns out that 80% of the people don't like what they do for a living. They do it because of the money, reputation, coincidence, fear of change, family commitment, cause this is where life led them, this is what they studied, what their parents have planned for them, cause they don't think they can make a living out of what they love, or they don't know what it is… Sounds familiar? Imagine someone would have given you a work plan, and guides you step by step in finding your passion and the way to make a living out of it. Imagine that you were a part of a community of people like you, who decided to go on a similar journey and they support each other along the way, consulting, asking questions and getting answers, and there is always someone there for you. Wouldn't you take it? That is exactly why Scott created LYL, because he was at the same place, but found his way out to living his dream, and made it his life mission to help others do the same.
On how Scott entered my life, and why I decided to write about LYL –
Up until a few weeks ago, I didn't know of Scott and his work. I found him accidently (or maybe there's no such thing) whilst my autodidact journey on social businesses, that gets me, to my great joy, to read and write about, and meet with, loads of inspiring people.
So it happened, that one thing led to another, and I found myself watching Scott's talk on TED and ending up at LYL website. I read Scott's blog on how it all started, watched his videos talking about LYL's Ideology and the principles of the method he developed. I read that the start – as a blogger – was challenging, and about the breakthrough, and of the importance Scott ascribed to the wisdom of the crowds and to meetings off-line, and hence, on the local communities of LYL, all over the world. In recent posts Scott shared his plans of fulfilling a life dream, and going with his wife Chelsea, on a year tour round the world, visiting LYL's local communities. Early September he wrote a post about the importance of taking time to get off the grid, and about his personal need, and concern, of doing it himself. The next stop on their journey, climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, forced him to do so. All that was more than enough for me to want to write about LYL and its entrepreneur, that I was captured by his simple authentic words and exceptional frankness. I always interview the people I write about, so I started looking for Scott's email. What I found caught me completely off guard.
Scott stayed off the grid. A tragic accident on the Kilimanjaro ended his journey too soon. A week after that last post, condolences messages started to show on Chelsea's wall, and LYL's, and they keep coming, from all over the world, from people who never met Scott, but met LYL. At that moment, I realized two things, the first, that I will have to make an exception, and not interview the entrepreneur this time, and second, that I JUST CAN'T NOT write about Scott's life project. For my sake, for his, and for each person who will read this, who might see Scott's Ted talk, might join LYL, and might get the insight Scott wished everyone to get. That instead of asking yourself "how can I do this?" you will ask "How can I possibly not"?
So, What is LYL? LYL is a social network, connecting people all over the world, who share the need to find and do the work they love, and by that to make a change for the better, in their life, and sometimes, in others as well. LYL provides many tools, some for free, and some with cost, to help achieve that goal, But most importantly, it provides, by its local communities, supported by LYL's team, a place to talk about it, consult, share, and support one another. At the moment there are communities in aprox 50 countries – amongst them USA, Kenya, Thailand, India, Australia, and even Israel. Apparently so many people around the world share the same challenges and concerns regarding self fulfillment in their work, and life. Scott was a great believer in real-life contact with people, and in the beliefs that we are the average of the people around us, and that the fastest way to do the things you don't think can be done is to hang around people already doing them. The online network, as important as it might be, is just a tool, in his eyes, to accomplish that goal.
Is LYL a "social business"? Scott believed the world would be an altogether better place if we all did work that actually mattered to us. His wish was to help as many people as possible to get there. After years of exploring, part of them as a personal coacher, he developed a methodic system, and shares it with the world through LYL. The essence of social business is to solve a "social problem" with "business tools". It is possible that it is a worth question to discuss weather 80% of people not satisfied with their work is a "social problem", but at the same time, it is difficult to argue with the assumption that as much as a person loves his work, he is happier, he does it well, he has better results, he inspires others, and the profit – personal, financial and social – is rising.
And now, to the 3 first steps that LYL recommends to start with:
- Know yourself, but for real. Sit with the questioners LYL has made for you (or do it any other way that works for you) – What are your strengths, your preferences, seek your passion, the things you would go to the end of the world for, what makes you happy and satisfied? What is success to you, what inspires you? What is the thing you feel you can't not do? This is not an east phase, it takes a lot of work and self sincerity, but it's essential.
- Get out of your comfort zone – challenge yourself starting with little steps-do every day one thing you thought you couldn't do, you're not used to do. Change habits, start doing sport if you don't do, write, if words are your passion, read, if you stopped, eat healthier, smile more, do little things for other (A coffee to a co-worker, don't park in the middle of two free spots…), say thank you a lot, to yourself, and to as many others as possible.
- Surround yourself with people who inspire you – locate the people that are already doing what you dream to do, get closer to them, read them, learn from them, and ask their advice. If they did it, there's no reason why you couldn't. Remember? The fastest way to do the things you don't think can be done is to hang around people already doing them. It makes the impossible-possible.
Note that all three things are completely in your hands, and all it takes is will, persistence, insistence, sincerity, and time. It doesn't mean that tomorrow you should quit your job. Most of us can't afford not to work for a living. The real challenge is to do this at the same time. Keep your day job and do it the best way you can, and with a smile, because it enables you, in your spare time to start heading towards the place you want to be. There are no magic solutions. The process requires hard work. But if it works for so many people, maybe it's worth giving it a shot? Good luck!
To get the free toolkit to start your journey – http://liveyourlegend.net/email-updates
Scott's Ted talk, over 2 millions have watched is, I strongly recommend you join them- ?Ted talks-Scott dinsmore-how to find and do work you love