If you had to give 100 reasons why your life matters, how many could you come up with?
The recently completed Live2Lead conference included Craig Groeschel, author, speaker and pastor. I’d never heard of him before the event, so I did some research to learn what he’s about.
Young man with suicidal thoughts
I found a story of Groeschel’s encounter with a young person named Scott, a member of his church — one of the nicest, most easy-going people he knew.
One day he and Scott were talking in his office, and Scott revealed that he had been having suicidal thoughts. He said he was suffering from anxiety, depression, and was tired of being alone and going through life as he knew it.
Groeschel struggled for words to convince him otherwise, then prayed for guidance. At that moment a thought flashed in his mind. He grabbed a notepad saying, “I believe you’re supposed to give me 100 reasons why your life matters, 100 reasons why you should live, 100 reasons why you should be encouraged.”
Scott was empty
Scott looked at him and said he couldn’t think of any. Groeschel pressed him to come up with something good about himself. Scott seemed slightly upset that he was being put through such an exercise, but then answered, “I’m a pretty good writer.”
Groeschel acknowledged the writing talent, and asked, “Okay, what else?”
Scott responded, “I’m funny.” Groeschel had never thought of Scott that way, but he wasn’t going to argue. He wrote it down. “What else?” he said. Scott thought for a moment, then blurted out, “I look a lot like Robert Redford.” Groeschel laughed to himself, “This guy looks nothing like Robert Redford.” He wrote it down.
He kept going deeper
By reason seven or eight, there was a small breakthrough. Scott smiled, “Well, my sister says I’m faithful and my boss tells me I’m a hard worker.” Then, the reasons started to flow.
It was at about reason 22 that he began to cry, then more reasons came.
Groeschel continued to work with him and Scott was able to get to 100 reasons why his life mattered.
What’s the real value here?
If you can list 100 reasons why your life matters, it’s going to be tough to believe there’s no purpose in fighting through another day, or week or year.
Too many people in Guam have come to this point, and didn’t have sufficient reason to continue that fight. They would have benefited from someone who pushed them for 100 reasons.
Workers also give up
In almost 25 years in the training business in Guam, I’ve encountered a lot of people who were mentally “dialed out” of their companies. They showed up every day, going through the motions, but weren’t seriously engaged.
The Gallup Organization surveys companies and workers across the planet each year, trying to determine the factors that influence job and career satisfaction, and that elusive engagement.
I’ve seen the annual survey results, and it’s always shown that roughly one in three workers are focused and intentional about their job. The rest are mildly engaged, disengaged, and a small number who are actively – and intentionally – disengaged.
Think about people in your workplace who match up with those descriptions.
What do workers believe?
In general, employees want their supervisor to like and respect them, but there’s more. They want their boss to have confidence in their ability to perform. Without that confidence, how can anyone feel sure about their prospects to just keep their job — let alone advance?
Over 15 years ago I wrote a course entitled Recognition, Praise & Motivation.
It’s about building relationships where workers feel valued. The training is designed to help develop a stronger sense of purpose, along with that all-important confidence.
Do your workers have reasons?
If you’re a manager or business owner, do your workers have the mindset where they could easily rattle off reasons why their job and presence in the organization matters?
Could they give 10 reasons?
If they can’t come up with 10 good reasons, could you easily help them complete the list?
The best place to start
You take the quiz first. Whether it’s 10 reasons why you matter at work, or 100 reasons why your life matters, let’s see where your head is at. Go for it.
In addition to helping organizations boost engagement, Jerry Roberts comments on business and the workplace daily at 7:20 am on The Ray Gibson Show on The Point, 93.3 FM. He can be reached at guamtraining.com, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.