Know Your WHY

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It takes great effort to make this your best year ever.

If you are working toward significant goals, you will inevitably need to overcome significant resistance. The best effort against resistance is knowing why the goals matter to you.

Knowing your WHY is a powerful source of personal motivation that will keep you going when the going gets tough, when you feel like throwing in the towel and when you want to quit. If your why is not strong, you will not be as committed and will end up like every other person who makes a New Year’s resolution: You will give up too quickly and revert to your old ways of doing things that may no longer serve you.

Let me give you an example:

If I tell you to swim across a river and I give you a hundred dollars to get to the other side of the river, would you do it? Sure, it is an easy task to get a hundred dollars. But what if I tell you that the river is invested with crocodiles? The hundred dollars no longer looks desirable to swim across the river, does it? You will not do it even if I give you hundred times hundred dollars, because your life is priceless!

Let’s say if your child was in the river, would you make an effort to save her? Without a thought and in an instant – you will do it, even if I don’t give you a dollar.

The risks and dangers are the same. What changed is your WHY – your reason and motivation for wanting to do it. When the reason is BIG enough, you will do whatever it takes to do the task.

The above example tells you that people are either motivated by something they want or something they do not want. At times, having some pain will propel you to do something extraordinary. For example, my greatest motivation, grit and persistence came when I had to fight my critics; people who mocked me or told me I will never amount to anything.

Your critics and naysayers can be your greatest motivators and teachers; they can give you the reason to fight with courage. They can force you to exercise your capabilities, skills, talents and abilities. You will be pushed to fight challenges, build your character and your resolve. Negative emotion or experience can make you be more determined in achieving your goals.

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To know your why, start with your CORE VALUES and KEY MOTIVATIONS, which define both who you are and what you stand for. Your core values are your internal compass, GPS and your guiding light! Getting your core values defined and properly calibrated is one of the most crucial steps in redirecting your life toward your most significant vision.

If you do not have clear defined values, you may find yourself making choices that do not align with what you want and it will leave you frustrated, confused and unhappy. Psychologists tell us that nothing creates more stress than when our actions and behaviours are not aligned with our core values.

Knowing your core values also helps you do things easier and more efficiently. You can make decision effortlessly when you have clearly defined core values.

When I have to make a tough decision, what really helps is to ask myself, “Does it align with my core values?” If yes, I will do it. If not, I won’t. All concerns and indecision are out of the way.

Here are three actions you can take to help identify your core values and know your WHY:

  1. Identify your core values (key motivations):

-Ask yourself the following questions for every goal:

  • Why is this goal important to me?
  • What is at stake if I don’t reach my goal?
  • What is at stake if I do reach my goal?

2 Brainstorm five to seven core values for each goal. Prioritise your core values with your key motivation at the top. 

3. Write down how your life will be transformed as a result of achieving this goal.


Goal: ____________________________

Brainstorm Core Values/ Motivations

Rank Your Core Values















How will your life be transformed as a result of achieving this goal?








  1. Thank you so much for the book otherwise I wouldn’t be able to afford it right now.
    I’m living on SSD & SSI so sometimes it can be a bit challenging.
    Steven and Maria you guys are greatly appreciated and I just wanted to let you know that as well.
    You guys are making positive and major changes in people’s lives, big impressions and that makes a difference. Thank you!!! Sending much love your way ????????
    Jamie Courtney

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