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Your “Why” May Revive Your Mission

By T. Kari Mitchell July 28, 2023 Mindset

Are you struggling to commit to your personal goals? What do you want to achieve? Improved relationships? Positive lifestyle shifts? Living your purpose? Giving back in meaningful ways?

Exploring your sincere, heartfelt reasons for pursuing your goal might help you honor and clarify your intentions. Here’s how asking the critical “why” can empower you to take strategic steps in the right direction and maintain your momentum.

The “Why” in Your Relationships

To illustrate how this works, imagine you’re on a mission to repair a broken relationship with a lifelong friend. Be honest about your “why.” Admitting you miss the wonderful times you shared could be a good place to start. However, this reason may not be strong enough to sustain you, should another disagreeable situation arise. How can you strengthen your friendship going forward?

Let’s go deeper. Are you sore about something your friend said or did? How did you respond? What role did you play in the matter? Confessing that you’re both capable of making mistakes may feel uncomfortable but can help you release the blame. Plus, there’s a certain amount of dignity in being responsible for your actions and reactions.

Base your bigger “why” on compassion and forgiveness. Forgiveness is such a potent and powerful incentive that frees you and your friend from the bondage of guilt and condemnation. Now you’ve established a prudent practice that extends beyond this relationship and has the potential to support your growth in other experiences.

The “Why” in Your Lifestyle Choices

Here’s another example of how a life-affirming answer to an essential question can motivate movement. A former client wanted to quickly lose 15 pounds within two months, in order to look svelte in the dress she had purchased for her daughter’s upcoming wedding.

She lost the weight, but was disappointed when she regained the pounds in a short period of time. She acknowledged how lifestyle changes could help her reach her goal, but her reason for wanting to lose the weight in the first place was not sustainable.

Because she saw what was possible, she revisited her “why” and established a mindset for whole health and vitality. She realized that feeling her best and looking her best were expressions of self-love.

This new way of thinking helped her recommit to lifestyle changes that would support all aspects of her life. She released the strict time component and limited number of pounds, and within a year witnessed results beyond her imagination. Embracing wellness was key to her success.

The “why” in Your Life Purpose

My “whys” help to drive my dreams. For instance, due to a number of health issues that popped up around menopause 15 years ago, I was forced to earnestly examine my lifestyle and transform my daily protocol.

I thought I was doing all the right things – eating healthfully (most of the time), exercising and reducing stress by meditating and spending time in prayer. However, the shocking diagnoses proved otherwise and awakened me to a fresh, new way of living.

After weeks of investigating alternative methods, I knew I would only consider prescription drugs as a last resort. Instead, I chose to navigate the naturopathic route and became an avid self-advocate for education and holistic healing.

By following a wellness model tailored to my specific needs, my health challenges have been reversed. Rather than accepting my test results as the final word and then taking the easy way out, I had to ask some tough questions:

  • What’s the purpose of including weight-bearing exercises in my routine?
  • What will it take to restock my kitchen, create delicious, allergy-friendly recipes, and turn the entire experience into a joyful learning adventure?
  • How will embracing health literacy and love for my sacred temple encourage others to make changes?

My big “whys” fueled a campaign for growth, balance, healing, and health, and led to the work I’m doing today. It’s refreshing to look back over the years and see how my health journey prompted my purpose.

Podcast hosts frequently ask, “TK, why did you chose to become an inspired aging motivational speaker and integrative wellness coach? What persuaded you to pursue another passion, after retiring from a long teaching career in the public schools?”

My answer: “Although I’m committed to being my best, my motivation is not all about me. I’ve dedicated my second half to providing others with the tools required to reinvent their lives.”

Ways, Wisdom and Other “Whys”

Are you ready to galvanize your goals and dreams? It may be helpful to first make a list of what’s important to you. Next to each intention, write the steps you’ve already taken and if you’re satisfied with your progress.

These may be things like helping others build stronger relationships, expressing yourself artistically, developing a skill in a particular area of interest, and so forth. For those intentions that have been particularly challenging, reflect on what you think is keeping you from experiencing positive results.

Now consider your “why.” Your “why” should be greater than a quick fix. State your “why” so it reflects wisdom, passion and commitment. At first, this may seem a little intimidating, but don’t let that to stop you. Without judgment, allow your thoughts to flow freely.

How does your solution make you feel? After you’ve explored your feelings and emotions, expect a revelation – perhaps clarity and insight – a sense of peace and comfort. You’ll know if you’re on the right track when your answer aligns with your overarching beliefs and values.

Your personal inquiries are uniquely yours – that’s what makes them so powerful. Pose those difficult questions. Go deep and explore the reason behind your aspirations. Recognize the synergy between your “what” and “why.” Paying attention to this dynamic duo may be just what you need to begin strategizing your action plan.

Let’s Have a Conversation:

Please share a couple examples of when your thoughtful questions led you to clarity and insight. Are you living your purpose? In what ways can self-inquiry help to guide you in the right direction?

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The Author

T. Kari Mitchell (TK), founder of Lifestyle 120, is an Inspired Aging Motivational Speaker & Integrative Wellness Coach. TK is dedicated to helping mature women flourish. Her Sprout Your New Life course provides women with tools to reclaim their health, confidence, purpose, and power so they can rock their golden years. Connect with TK at

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