I detailed relationships and the value system last week. For the ninth and final reason ALL boys need a rite-of-passage, I dedicate the entire blog to life mission. It’s a very important step; in my experience most of the young men I facilitate in The Quest Project® have not considered or thought about their life mission.
I get it! As a young man I grew up in an abusive house with an alcoholic father, the only time dad asked me what I wanted to be, and do, with my life when I was 11 years old I said, “I want to be a doctor” he said “forget it that’ll never happen, you’re not smart enough!” We never discussed it again. I guess I proved him wrong; I WOULD in fact become a doctor!
My mom and dad weren’t concerned about establishing a life mission with me. My parents didn’t have one for themselves; my dad’s goal was to drink beer and mom’s goal was to get through another day without being his punching bag. The result, both of them floundered in life, searching and never achieving. Sadly, they had three kids that didn’t receive some very important life lessons from them.
I encourage parents every day to make sure they know and help develop their son’s life mission, to support it and nurture it.
For me, I joined the United States Air Force after high school. It provided me structure and purpose that was lacking in my life; the Air Force taught me to be a man; it became the father I never had. I would later seek counseling and therapy to heal the wounds from my dad. I received direction from a few healthy male role models and mentors. They impressed upon me the importance of goals and a life mission. I knew very quickly that because of my upbringing I would help other young men.
My mission is “to create healthy lifestyles by teaching, facilitating, research, writing and example.”
9.) Equipped with his life mission gives him purpose every day as he journeys through life towards his goal.
A boy needs to have a goal; goal setting can lay the groundwork for his life mission. Once that’s established and he has purpose, how will he get there? What will he do to get there? How will you help him?
He needs a nudge (or two) along the way. Support him and remind him so that he can stay on track and achieve! Visuals are always recommended, boys love to “see” what they’re working towards.
Maybe you’ve never written a life mission for yourself; do it together, work on it together, and display it together. (Example: using a white board)
Remember that young men strive to achieve and compete. Keep his life mission in front of him and let him soar!