Character Corner: The power of purpose

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. -- Nietzsche said that "he who has a why to live for can bear almost any how." "Why" is one of the most powerful words in our language. Add a "?" to it and you add even more power to it.

Have you ever thought about why you do what you do? Why do you speak as you do? Why do you behave as you do? Why do you think the thoughts you think? Why are you here? Most of us would say we're the product of our experience and environment. Many of us would say that we were brought up to be who we are. The nurture vs. nature argument has been around for ages and will probably continue without conclusion.

Every person who has had a powerful impact on the world had a specific sense of purpose. People like Mother Theresa, Gandhi, and Victor Frankl all had the sense of doing what's right regardless of the consequences for them personally. We call that integrity. Why do we do what we do? We all have different reasons. If we're to maintain the great force we now are, we must have integrity: integrity to principles beyond ourselves and we must have it every day. As Dr. Stephen Covey said, "If you keep doing what you're doing, you'll keep getting what you're getting."

We all have a purpose in our lives. What's your purpose? Why do you do what you do? Find a purpose that's aligned with the principle of integrity and you'll find success beyond your dreams.

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