How to Understand Who You Are and What You Do

As a gal who runs a biznezz, doncha know, I’m obsessed with who it is I am and what is is I do.

Lots of folks understand that obsession completely.

Tell me you’re as obsessive as I am.

TELL ME!

How to Understand Who You Are and What You Do

For me, it’s my literal business to be deeply aware of what I do, whom I do it for, what folks want and how I can offer them (you!) what is needed and wanted.

I can answer the question is so many ways, wearing so many hats – and I bet you can too.

At my most basic, I’m a teacher.

Yes, a writer, always a writer, but that skill, my gift of words, is merely the vehicle I drive in order to deliver the lessons.

Of all the questions I get, the main one is either how to begin or how to know what to do.

The first is easy, any manual can get you started. The second is deeply personal and the question of the ages: who are you and what do you do?

I’ve been trying to narrow that last one down my entire life.

How to know what to do?

Start with a list of the things you love to do.

I love to read – I’m a reader!

I love to write – I’m a writer!

I love to bake – I’m a baker!

I love to mother – I’m a mother! (insert ALL THE “YO MOMMA” JOKES HERE)

I love to take care of those around me – I’m a caregiver!

I love to garden – I’m a gardener!

I love to make to make folks laugh – I’m a comedian!

I love to show folks how strong they are and that they CAN, especially when they believe they can’t – I’m a confident mofo!

I love to pass along my experience, knowledge and wisdom gained from my darkest of journeys, because I know others think they are alone – they are hesitant to believe there are others who are like them, who have suffered like them.

Even my about page offers insight to who I am:

I hope when you read my words, wherever they are, you laugh your behind off – or think until it hurts – or cry public tears. I hope your life is expanded in some way.

Not just because of the singular stories about life’s joys and ridiculous twists, but because you recognize the collective us in the words.

I’m compelled to shine the light on the threads that connect us, instead of the vast gulf that divides us.

We are stronger together, no matter how terrifying the flying debris appears or how soft the landing cushion feels. We are stronger knowing we aren’t alone.

That’s why I write.

You’re not alone on your journey. You’ve got me – you lucky duck!

Yet, I struggle and come back to who it is I am and what it is I do, frequently, because I love so many things; I’m passionate about so many things.

How does one narrow it down?

Some folks have a singular vision, a singular dream. I envy those people.

What I could do with singularity!

Nope. I gotta be someone who loves ALL THE THINGS!

Maybe you do, too.

Or maybe not.

It’s a scrambled egg mess some days and wouldn’t it be nice to have an easy-to-follow roadmap?

What do you know – there’s a Ted Talk about that: How to Know Your Life Purpose in 5 Minutes

Don’t wimp out. This video is worth the time to watch and do the simple exercise.

I did it.

You can too.

Try to allow the questions to ping your inner passion, your inner beast waiting to pounce.

In other words, don’t make this tough: Hear the question. Take a beat. Answer.

This isn’t a test; you will be allowed to change your mind.

Ready? (my answers follow)

#1: Who are you?

Patti (woot! aced it!)

#2: What do you do? What do you love to do?

What is the ONE thing you feel supremely qualified to teach other people?

I write. I love to write.

I feel supremely qualified to teach others how to overcome by offering confidence, through knowledge.

That still seems a bit simplistic, but that’s kinda the point of this exercise.

#3: Who do you do it for?

You. (stop blushing – i love you!)

#4: What do those people (you!) want or need?

Positive change.

#5: How do they change or transform as a result of what you give them?

Confidence to do.

Now, my answers are ridiculously simplistic. I could write pages and pages about who I am and what I do.

Life is never as simple as answering a Ted Talk’s questions. Still, there is value in the exercise.

I’m a paid writer, so I help my clients overcome lack of sales, by offering confidence and knowledge through copywriting to bring about results ($sales$) for my clients.

I’m also a writer for my own sites, where I write for your positive change, whether through teaching a skill (how to bake a memorable cheesecake. how to take amazing photos. how to narrow down your passion.), or making the scary a little bit less, or even through making your life easier with shared experience.

My writing, the thing I love to do, the thing I do no matter if I’m paid or not, is about teaching and exploring positive change that offers you confidence to do, to overcome, no matter what the subject matter – your fear of baking, or photography, or of being so dadgum needy. (please. we all know I’m the needy one here. love me! see me! laugh with me!)

If you’re like me, you’ll watch the video more than once.

You’ll scratch out your original answers, you’ll add new things, you’ll take out others (what were you thinking), keeping the heat on, simmering your understanding further down until all that’s left is the deep rich Au Jus sauce that is your flavorful passion; the secret sauce only you can offer the world.

Mmmm, Au Jus. Makin’ me hungray.

The point is to listen, to participate, to think, to ponder, to be open, and to explore that which sets you on fire and then, once discovering, moving forward in your life with the passion of who you are and what you do.

As Adam stated, it is powerful.

If you watched the video until the end, you know that Adam shows you how to put numbers one through five into a sentence when folks ask you, “What do you do?”

I write about positive change, through gained knowledge, that offers confidence to do.

Now you.

Go. Listen. Do the work.

Who are you and what do you do?

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Comments

  1. Patti, you can be so uproarously funny at times, then very serious and … well, your perspicacious side emerges. It’s a delightful combo! This post is a keeper.

  2. Kate Johnston says:

    That is a great Ted Talk! Yes, knowing our purpose can go a long way in helping us stay on track and focused.

  3. Great post, great video. I love your statement. I’m still thinking …

  4. I definitely need to come back to this when I have more quiet time to reflect on it. Great post!

  5. I am a life long learner! Under that I am a mom and we homeschool. I am a gardener, a baker, and and teacher. Thanks for the thoughts!

  6. I think for me I am ultimately here to be of service, however I am working on finding out how I can best be of service to others. Although I was a caregiver for around 19 years, I did burn out. I do love writing though and been working on using it to be of service. Like Leiloni said I am a life long learner as well.

    Thank you!
    Liliana

  7. You are like my soul sister! Great post!

  8. Who are YOU? I will tell you: You are the winner of the Inspire Me Monday Linky Party for this post. Congrats!
    Who am I?
    I am Janice, your hostess. You’ll be featured on my site on Monday.

  9. Hello Patti,

    This is a wonderful exercise in finding our life purpose. I found that many times I ask the questions but don’t even bother answering them. I’m happy that I was able to answer these questions! #InspireMeLink

    Best,
    Sigrid

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