A beardless young stonemason is hard at work. He ages, matures, and his beard grows longer as time passes. One day he throws down his hammer and walks away. His true mission and purpose in life became clear to him over time.

''Once upon a time, there was a man who finally realized that he needed to devote his time to a different pursuit.''

The notion of mission

Are you aware what your mission is? Have you formulated a mission that helps you define yourself as a person and helps you consciously navigate around ­obstacles, make the right choices and achieve your goals in life?

An explicit mission – based on who you are, what you do, what really interests you and what has always captured your interest on an emotional level – will help define and support you as a person. This is where you have unique insights and resources that can help you get to where you want to be when you bring them into play in the right way.

Table of Content

The challenge here is to become aware of your inner ­resources ­without losing yourself in the trivia of everyday reality. On the one hand, that means ­seeing yourself as part of a bigger picture (which means that your ­mission is not ­neces­sarily aligned with your current job). On the other hand, it means being very thorough in your answers during the personal discovery process that is a ­condition for ­identifying your particular mission.


It’s never too late to discover your mission in life, thought the man, just before he closed his eyes for the last time. The wizard did not take nearly that long – the time he spent carving stones and growing a beard also gave him time for reflection, ­supported his mission and helped define him as a person.

Being present in the moment, striking a precise blow with the hammer that hits the chisel and causes the intended effect is an example of craftsmanship and – in a sense – magic. The ability to visualize the resulting form of the stone and to use one’s own resources to shape it requires insight and creativity.

Discovering your mission takes a conscious effort. Some of the exercises you may have completed in the article on leadership are repeated here. You may find it ­helpful to check if any of your answers changed in the meantime.

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