#22 More WHY: Parsing My Personal Example

What happened to my family and the rest of humanity?  Oh yeah, I deleted them in the last post while I went searching for my WHY. 

As a recap, the current form of my WHY is this…

Learning About Stuff That Interests Me

Now, to bring my family and the rest of humanity back into the equation, I’m going to use the “Five why’s” technique. Last time I suggested it as one of the ways to help find your WHY, but I didn't use it. This time, even though I already have the core of my WHY, I'm going to use the technique to improve my WHY. Here goes...

(1)Why do I enjoy “Learning about stuff that interests me?”

          Because I like understanding stuff.

(2)Why do I like understanding stuff?

          So I don’t feel like a dumb ass.

(3)Why don’t I want to feel like a dumb ass?

          Because people don’t think highly of dumbasses.

(4)Why do I want people to think highly of me?

          So people will respect me.

(5)Why do I want people to respect me?

          So they’ll like and connect with me.

(6)Why do I want people to connect with me?

          Because it’s a basic, core, primal, human need.

A need that Brené Brown shared in a prior post (it's near the bottom of the page), and that I’ll talk about a lot more in the future. Here's a reminder of her quote..

“Connection is why we’re here. We’re hardwired to connect with others, it’s what gives purpose and meaning to our lives, and without it there is suffering."

So it took me 6 why's rather than the prescribed 5, but you get the idea. And I don't think it's a coincidence where I ended up. If you do the "5 Why's" against your WHY I bet you'll end up in the same place. Or else Brown is full of shit and so are lots of other people. 

Bottom line, we all carry some level of interpersonal insecurity. A yearning to feel worthy of being connected with, heard, respected. The alternative is insecurity, disconnection, loneliness. Otherwise known as depression, alcoholism, workaholism... 

That's all bad stuff that I'd like to avoid, so I need to upgrade my WHY. I need to UNdelete my loved ones and the rest of society and get to connecting. Here's version 2.0 of my WHY...

To Learn About Stuff That Interests Me AND Share My Findings With My Wife, My Children, and Anyone Else That Can Benefit.

It's accurate, but it's too long. This thing is just for me, so I don’t need all the detail. Let’s prune it phrase by phrase.

“To Learn” - That’s good, I like it. 

“About Stuff That Interests Me” - I don't spend much time learning stuff that doesn’t interest me, so that phrase is gone.

“And Share” - That’s good, I like it.

“My Findings” - What else would I share? Unnecessary. It’s gone.


"With My Wife, My Children, and Anyone Else That Can Benefit” - Doesn’t add clarity. I'll share hiring strategies with person X. I'll share how to manage a Plex server with person Y. The only person I share pretty much everything with is Joyce, but I already know that. I don't need it in my WHY. Kill it.

And that leaves me with this simple version of my WHY...

To Learn and Share

That’s it. And I get that it seems too simple to be useful, but trust me. We're heading in the right direction...

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