The Most Important Question You Can Ask Yourself

The Most Important Question You Can Ask Yourself

“What Do I Want Out Of My Life?”

What can I do to be better than yesterday?”

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While this is a question I ask myself every morning
(and at least five times more a day when I hit a lull) 
This is not the most important question to ask yourself.
Why? Because you can do a hundred thousand things and be better at them today in any given domain by simply doing them.
For example:

“I donated $1 today to a charity that gives kids water, I am more virtuous today than I was yesterday!”
“I went ahead and learned two new words in a foreign language!
I’m now 0.000001% more generally educated!

See how nebulous that question is and how you can throw a dart at a board for something to do that will make you “better” without actually providing ANY real or significant change?
That’s because the ONLY “correct” answer is the one that aligns your interests and passions towards accomplishing your life’s mission.

What is your life’s mission?

No, genuinely… What is it? I don’t know it.
If you can’t IMMEDIATELY answer, take a second to reflect on that question and digest what it’s asking.
If you’re asking
Well, what is “my life’s mission” supposed to mean?
Then you are asking the right questions, Good Job.

In simple terms, your life’s mission is YOUR ultimate purpose. YOUR reason for existing, YOUR endgame, YOUR “why?” in life.

THIS is BY FAR the most important question you can ask yourself in your entire life.

Think of it like this: why do you go to work? Obviously, to make money (if you’re not retired, which 99.9999% of you aren’t).
But what if money wasn’t an issue? What brings you FULFILLMENT? Or rather what WOULD bring you fulfillment if you could do it every single day and not have to worry about doing any other task? Now, some people might take this the wrong way and say:

Oh, well I’d LOVE to sit on the beach ALL day and relax! I couldn’t imagine a more fulfilling life than sitting on a beach having people bring me and my family drinks and reading a good novel!”

This is not what the question is asking. Lounging around and relaxing is GREAT,
Even if you were offered a NEW flavour of wine, a COMFIER seat every single day, and didn’t have to lift a FINGER… you would, unfortunately, succumb to this dastardly devil called BOREDOM.

Think of this clip from futurama.

A casino where he wins? He must be in Heaven!!
(we’ve all been there and felt that… damn scarab slot machines.)
But a casino where he ALWAYS wins? He MUST be in hell!
Why is that?

Because it’s predictable and predictability is boring as hell.

Your life’s mission is arguably something you could do every day that leads you to fulfillment through tasks or iterations that serve some higher purpose or goal.
For example, I’ll share with you my life’s mission.

My life’s mission is to own and operate the largest animal sanctuary network in the ENTIRE world.

Is that too ambiguous? Surely, one could argue “Yes!” considering there is a LOT to unpack there, but for me, this is a clear-cut goal.

My mission’s endgame has one goal to work towards that doesn’t require ANY specific ONE way to reach it, giving me the flexibility to learn, make errors, and throughout time find what works best with my developing skills to conquer it.

Now for me to tackle and eventually ACHIEVE that goal it will require a LOT of things.

This is where I fundamentally have to lay out my plan but look at this:

I now have a GOAL larger than myself that I need to work on! And with this? THOUSANDS of smaller goals I need to work on to eventually get there, Perfect. 

“Imagine Who You Could Be & Aim SINGLE MINDEDLY At That” – Jordan Peterson

Why is that perfect?
If I need to do THOUSANDS of “things” to accomplish ONE “thing”, it opens up countless doors and builds millions of connections.

Think of ALL of the new interactions and skills you will NEED to learn along the way.

For example, I may need to learn how to manage finances better.
As a result, I can either take a college course, go online to some guru, consult a financial advisor, ask friends, message people online, go to a library and get a paperback book, or end up on youtube.

When learning these in person I can see the people I need and build a connection with them, now maybe they may introduce me to new topics/people/ open new discussions I haven’t been made of aware of.

This form of networking you are exposed to by working towards your mission is POWERFUL.

I would argue more powerful than money, physical strength, or intelligence.

As you expand your domain of competency, interact with new people, and become more powerful you will inevitably meet more powerful and like-minded people. This is where you form genuine, authentic, and enriching relationships with people who would LOVE to get down in the dirt and work by your side to accomplish YOUR mission, whatever it may be.

Just a small aside, before wrapping up:

I chose the above photo of Jordan Peterson because this is a concept that he parallels in his book:
“The 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote To Chaos”

A lot of the concepts we have worked through together on this page are mentioned heavily in the book, although he has a slightly different feel to his “Rules For Life” series when it comes to addressing an important question we may ask ourselves in times of uncertainty and inner turmoil.

Lastly, when you ask yourself an important question, make sure you do so honestly and make sure you understand WHY you are asking yourself this as well. If your intentions are pure and in line with what you deem to be good, then work towards finding an answer or making a roadmap to the solution your questions demand.
The journey of problem-solving will always be the most valuable part of the adventure.

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