#027: From Lost To Fulfilled

Jul 25, 2023

Today's Highlights:

  • The Goal: Give you a framework for creating your own personal mission so you stop being frustrated by work and start loving what you do.
  • If you've ever felt unfulfilled by your job, this newsletter is for you. Fulfillment is much more achievable than it seems, but it takes self-reflection.
  • I've boiled down the self-reflection process to 6 simple questions you can ask yourself. I promise: defining your personal mission will be one of the most important actions you ever take in your career.

From Lost To Fulfilled: 6 Questions To Define Your Personal Mission And Find Fulfillment


Jordan's Story

Jordan Calypso is a Project Manager for Big General Contractor, Inc. (over $10BN in yearly revenue). BGC, Inc. is a national firm that specializes in transportation construction, and Calypso goes around the country building airports for them.

Jordan loves construction and being a Project Manager — and he especially loves building airports because traveling the country for work is something he always wanted to do. It gives him the chance to really dig in to his projects! But after 9 years of it, Jordan is 31 years old, has a fiancee and a dog, and is starting to feel like his work is pulling him away from home.

No matter how hard he tries, the job pulls him back in. Jordan promises his future wife things “will be different soon”, but she’s heard it before, and although she loves him, she knows the chances of Jordan changing now are slim to none.

Before He Knows It

Before he knows it, Jordan is a 50-something Project Executive who works 60+ hours a week (plus every other Saturday), answers emails at the dinner table, and gets to about 1 out of every 3 of his kids’ recitals/plays/games. You can find him on Friday afternoon telling the 20-something-year-old Project Manager he is training, “Don’t do what I did”: He always knew he should spend more time with his family, but he never stopped long enough to really make himself do it.

The Truth About Jordan

Jordan Calypso is a fictional character I just made up, but if you have been around the industry, you probably know his story is very common.

From my experience around construction — 2 years interning for a big GC, then 7 years with a subcontractor — I can think of 20+ people who have told me, “Don’t do what I did.”

And despite their advice, I saw myself going down this path until about 2 years ago.

I was getting promoted rapidly and had a lot of important people telling me I was doing a very good job. “You’re setting yourself up for a fine career,” they would say. “Keep it up and you’ll be making lots of money in no time.”

Despite that fact, I was feeling totally unfulfilled because I was stressed and constantly worried about my jobs, what people thought about me, and if I could work 55+ hour weeks forever.

This went on for a long time, until one day when I was reading a book about the importance of a good Mission Statement for successful businesses. It struck me that I had never sat down and defined my personal mission — a mission that I could use to guide my career and life decisions. I spent the next few months doing deep reflection: reading, meditating, and writing all the time.

Ultimately, I defined my mission, and it pushed me to switch careers from a Vice President at a Subcontractor to a Consultant in the Construction Industry. (More on my mission below)

This Is For You

It has had such a profound effect on my life, that today I want to encourage you to define your personal mission — and lucky for you, I boiled my months-long soul-searching process down into 6 simple questions that you can use to guide your efforts.

If you are in your 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, or 60s, I think you still have time to ask yourself these questions and find fulfillment in your life. I highly suggest you copy and paste this email into a word document and add you answer in the space provided below.

Let’s jump in.


Fulfillment Question #1: What are my long-term goals?

Your answer:


My answer: Be a great husband and (future) dad; be married to my wife for life; own a business; “retire” while sitting on the Board of Directors for multiple companies


Fulfillment Question #2: What really matters in my life right now?

Your answer:


My answer: My wife, my dog, my parents, my friends, doing fulfilling work, helping people, my network


Fulfillment Question #3: What — in the course of my day — gives me energy?

Your answer:


My answer: Writing, “big” conversations with smart people, business development, networking, doing yoga, walking my dog, planning with my wife


Fulfillment Question #4: What — in the course of my day — takes away my energy?

Your answer:


My answer: Pointless conflict, administrative work, concealing my thoughts and emotions, self-doubt


Fulfillment Question #5: If I could only work 4 hrs/week, what would I work on?

Your answer:


My answer: Talking/networking/business developing with smart people who want to make the world a better place, Writing


Fulfillment Question #6: What activities make me lose all sense of time? (i.e. What puts me into my “flow” state?)

Your answer:


My answer: Writing, networking, business development, talking to smart people, helping people, doing research


Putting it all together

After answering all 6, you should start to notice a pattern.

For me, wife/family and writing/networking/business development/helping people kept showing up.

So I have defined my personal mission statement as follows:

On a personal level, I want to be the best dad and husband I can be. On a professional level, I want to leverage writing, networking, and business development to make Construction the best possible place to work for all people.

By defining my mission, I give myself a barometer to measure my success and make hard decisions. I am very excited to be living life with this sense of direction!


In Summary

In summary, a personal mission is a perfect starting point to go from feeling lost in your life to finding fulfillment all around you.

The 6 questions you should ask yourself to accelerate the process are as follows:

  1. What are my long-term goals?
  2. What really matters in my life right now?
  3. What — in the course of my day — gives me energy?
  4. What — in the course of my day — takes away my energy?
  5. If I could only work 4 hours per week, what would I work on?
  6. What activities make me lose all sense of time? (i.e. What puts me in my “flow state”?)

I really hope these help.

Please reply to this email and let me know what you think — I will respond to everyone who does!

Check out my Free Guides

Enter your email below to get access to my free guides for Construction Executives

We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.