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Managing Oneself

by Admin August 3, 2009

Peter Drucker, widely considered to be "the father of modern management”, was one of the most brilliant and insightful thinkers and writers on management in the history of mankind.

Reading what he said in 1999 about “Managing Oneself” has inspired my current work as professional life coach and career consultant. I wanted to share some of his thoughts.

Peter Drucker, in his own words....

“In a few hundred years, when the history of our time will be written from a long term perspective, I think it is very probable that the most important event these historians will see is not technology, it is not the Internet, it is not e-commerce. It is an unprecedented change in the human condition. For the first time, substantial and rapidly growing numbers of people have choices. For the first time, they will have to manage themselves. And let me say, we are totally unprepared for it.”

We will have to learn where we belong, what our strengths are, what we have to learn so that we get the full benefit from it, where our defects are, what we are not good at, what our values are. For the first time in human history, we will have to learn to take responsibility for managing ourselves. And as I said, this is probably a much greater challenge than any technology – a change in the human condition. Nobody teaches it – no school, no college – and it probably will be another hundred years before they teach it.

In the mean time, the achievers, and I don’t mean millionaires, but rather the ones who want to make a contribution, who want to lead a fulfilling life, and want to feel that there is some purpose in their being on this earth. They will have to learn something which, only a few years ago, a very few super achieves ever knew. They will have to learn to manage themselves, to build on their strengths, to build on their values.”

Living Your Life On Purpose

by Dieter Pauwels February 6, 2009

What road are you currently traveling on? Are you heading in the right direction? How do you know?  Explorers use a compass to guide them. We have all been blessed with an inner compass to guide us on our journey through life as well.

Your inner compass is your life’s purpose. It is calibrated by your core values and principles and the beliefs that support them. You cannot always predict what the road ahead will look like, but when you trust your inner compass you will always stay 'on course.'

Like a compass, your unique purpose is a strong source of guidance in times of adversity and challenge. When you come to a crossroad in your life, feel temporarily lost or sidetracked, you can always find your 'true north' when you are willing and able to trust your inner compass.

The purpose that guides you is that special something inside, that gives your life meaning and direction. It inspires you, excites you, and makes you feel most alive. When you embrace your purpose, you uncover your passion.  You become aware of the burning desire that smolders deep within you.

Your purpose shows you what you should do; your passion ignites the spark within you and creates the energy you need to pursue it. 

Living a life of purpose and passion is one of great joy. Because your purpose resonates within you at such a deep emotional level, it is your responsibility and your greatest joy to discover it, live it and fulfill it. When you do, you find a life filled with energy and vibrancy. 

William Barcley once said, "There are two great days in a person's life - the day we are born and the day we discover why."

The most compelling reason to find your purpose and passion in life is so you can integrate them with the work you do.  So many people are disenchanted with their jobs, yet work encompasses about 60% of our active life. If you find a way to combine your purpose and passion with your career, you will reap boundless rewards in terms of personal and professional satisfaction, fulfillment, and productiveness.

When you are passionate about what you do, you have an advantage that is nearly impossible to overcome. Passion is what makes things possible which would otherwise be considered impossible. Living your life on purpose gives you clarity of vision, even when fog sets in. The combination of the two is what enables you to face adversity and not let obstacles and challenges sway you from your course.

Living on purpose and with passion demands constant reflection about the choices you make along the road.  You should continuously ask yourself if what you are doing is what you truly want to be doing. These questions will get you started:

  • What is your purpose in life? What were you put on earth to accomplish?
  • What are you passionate about?  What one thing gets you out of bed even on the dreariest of mornings?
  • How does your career choice reflect your life’s purpose? If it doesn’t, what can you do to remedy the situation?
  • What in your work life are you passionate about?  If you aren’t passionate about anything at work, why are you there?
  • How do you fulfill your purpose and passion during non-working hours? Are there ways to integrate these activities into your work?  Can you think of a way to earn a living while pursing the things that make you the happiest?

Somewhere within you is an inner purpose, a burning desire and a passion ready to be ignited! Listen to your inner voice for clues to those things that make you feel most alive, and pursue them passionately. When you find your purpose, you will unleash the immense potential within you that will take you to unimagined heights on your life's journey! Enjoy the road ahead ... on purpose!

About Dieter Pauwels:

Dieter Pauwels is a professional certified life, business and career coach, speaker and author, facilitating personal and organizational transformation. He works with both individuals and teams to create new possibilities, manage change and maximize their productivity and personal effectiveness.

You can visit his life and business coaching website at or read his comments and thoughts on the impact of coaching on life and business on this blog.

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