I think a lot about purpose – our “why.”

Working from purpose is critical to build sustainable improvements for the state of West Virginia.  As I have communicated before, my purpose in returning to the state and to West Virginia University is to improve the health of the state, and to change the future of the state by creating hope and an abundance mindset.

Deeper than these goals, I have recently been exploring my personal beliefs that underlie this “why.”

I think we often mistake “success” for that which others recognize – money, job, titles and power.

True power comes from the inside – understanding what is really important.

Psychologist Abraham Maslow talked about the hierarchy of human needs – the things that humans strive for and need. At the base are physiological needs, followed by safety, love/belonging, esteem and finally, self-actualization.

I think our journey here on earth is deeper and more foundational. I think we are here for four reasons:

  • To love
  • To learn
  • To serve
  • To gain trust/faith and reduce the impact of ego (I think our egos are our evil)

I believe this is what self-actualization is all about: Our path of growth.

If we apply this framework to helping people in our state:

  • Love each other (create family and community)
  • Learn from each other (respect diversity of ideas and be curious)
  • Serve others (create hope by focusing on others instead of yourself)
  • Have faith/trust (altruism instead of ego)

Simply, creating family and community through loving, learning and service provides trust, hope and faith in a better future for all.

We are on a special mission together.  All of us.

With this approach, the world and West Virginia will be a much better place.