You’re always asked ‘What’s your Why’

I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve been advised to write down the reasons WHY I want to build an online business. And I have done in the past – but only on a simple level – because, to be honest, I didn’t really think that doing so in great detail would make much difference.

‘What’s your Why?’ came up again recently in some of the other training I’ve been doing. For some reason the way in which the importance of identifying your “Why’s” was explained just clicked this time. In the past I could probably prefix the why’s I had in my head with ‘It would be better if…’ which betrays the fact that these were just a set of vague goals and vague desires to move things in a particular direction.

Now though my Why’s just seem to be very much stronger. Over the last few years my career aspirations have changed significantly, my own and close family have had to deal with serious illnesses, my children’s careers, education & lives have taken them a long way away and they’ve brought moments of great pride along with the inevitable worries and concerns. We’ve done a lot of travelling – Sri Lanka, South Africa, Dubai – and now the kids have left home, we’ve decided to downsize, leaving what has been the family home for the last 22 years. It’s all change.

2017’s going to be very busy too. The new (very old) house needs a lot of work doing on it, so that’s going to be a major focus. We’re off to see my son Ben out in Canada next week – the poor lad’s torn his ACL in a skiing accident. My youngest daughter Ellie, who has learning difficulties, finishes a 3 year residential course in July so we’ve got the ongoing joy of dealing with Social Services to get her supported living placement arranged. We’re in Majorca in September with friends and family and to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary this year, Gill and I have arranged a tour of Vietnam/Cambodia in November. Now I know I’m ‘lucky’ to be in a position to be able to do all that now, but believe me that ‘luck’ came as a result of a hell of a lot of hard work.

Back to my Why’s though…

Most people’s Why’s are centred around the ideas of time, freedom and money and mine are no different. Some Why’s you think of in a positive way in that you want to achieve something new, but equally some are negative. There are aspects of your life which you really didn’t enjoy or still don’t and you want to be able to move away from those things.

I’ve got mine written out in detail as a reminder for whenever I get too far distracted, but in summary, and despite what it already given me, I don’t want, in the medium to long term, for my life to be based around a career that relies on working for someone else, that relies on their budgets and goals, that requires me to spend 2+ hours a day travelling to/from work, that might run if I’m lucky till I’m 65-70 but then just stops. I don’t want to just live on a pension from then on that’s worth a fraction of what I currently earn. I don’t want any member of my family ever, ever, ever to have to wait for medical care. There are a few other things I don’t want to have to experience again, but I’ll keep those to myself.

What I do want is to have a business that I can run from anywhere at any time, that has a pretty inexhaustible market place, that will fund our life, our travelling, our family, our health care and won’t stop working for me when I want to or need to take a break. If done the right way, building a business providing online marketing training and products can do that and by working with and following the guidance of a select number of mentors, I’m going to make it happen.


As a side note, for many years while my children were small, I had to work away from home all week and that time away is something I’d really rather not have lost. I’m talking about 15-20 years ago and during that time I came across a poem called ‘To my Grown Up Children’. It sometimes written as ‘To my Grown Up Son’ too, but either way it laments the passing of time and missed opportunities of being involved in your children’s lives as much as you could have been.

Balancing the time spent building your career and with your family is never easy and this poem has been stuck on my office wall ever since. I’d like to think that when I get much older the thoughts expressed in the last lines won’t apply to me. If you’re reading this and are much younger than me, perhaps with a young family, then times and opportunities have changed, so take a copy yourself, stick it on your wall and write out your own Why’s.


To My Grown-Up Children

by Alice E. Chase

My hands were busy through the day, I didn’t have much time to play
The little games you asked me to, I didn’t have much time for you.

I’d wash your clothes, I’d sew and cook, but when you’d bring your picture book
And ask me, please, to share your fun, I’d say, “A little later, son.”

I’d tuck you in all safe at night, and hear your prayers, turn out the light,
Then tiptoe softly to the door, I wish I’d stayed a minute more.

For life is short, and years rush past, a little child grows up so fast,
No longer are they at your side, their precious secrets to confide.

The picture books are put away, there are no children’s games to play,
No goodnight kiss, no prayers to hear, that all belongs to yesteryear.

My hands once busy, now lie still, the days are long and hard to fill,
I wish I might go back and do, the little things you asked me to.

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