What’s My Next?

By Sam Horn
Published on: October 9, 2020

Part One in a Series

“Are you crystal clear why you’re here?” – Sam Horn

Did you know a recent Gallup poll reported 70 percent of people are “unhappy and uninspired at work.” Yikes. Do you know someone who feels like this? The question is, “How can we reverse this ennui and create a more meaningful life and career now … not someday?”

How? By following the example of the presenters I saw in action at the NOVUS Summit at the United Nations.

Every single one of these inspiring individuals – from X Prize’s Anousheh Ansouri to astronaut Yvonne Cagle to Rob Wolcott of TWIN Global, Craign Hatkoff of Tribeca Film Festival, Lara Stein of TEDx Global, David Katz of Plastic Bank, and event organizer Kunal Sood are crystal clear WHY they’re here.

The theme of the summit was “MOONSHOTS: Making the Impossible Possible,” and they’re all doing that by launching moonshots that use the U.N.’s SBG 17 goals to catalyze positive change.  

What is a MOONSHOT?

Well, John F. Kennedy is famous for proposing to Congress the U.S. “should commit itself to landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to Earth” before the end of the decade.

To me, a moonshot is a “meaningful NEXT that gives us something to look forward to.”

Do you have a moonshot?  I think it’s the secret to a purposeful life that has meaning and momentum – a life that gives you opportunities to leverage your experience and expertise for good, turn status quo into status grow, and help you lead and leave a lasting legacy.

I presented a workshop on how to do this for National Speakers Association last week. I was a member for 25 years and it was wonderful re-connecting with long-time friends. 

I promised participants I’d distill the content and share it here so they can take more time to delve into the exercises and discuss the resulting insights with friends, family members and colleagues at work.

Hope these questions kick-start your clarity on a meaningful next that lights you up just thinking about it.

1.       What is a MOONSHOT that would put the light on in my eyes?

“You’ve got to have a dream for a dream to come true.” – Walt Disney

Many people tell me they don’t dream anymore – it’s too painful. As one exhausted young woman told me, “I’m a single mom with two kids, one with special needs. It’s all I can do to get through the day. Dreaming isn’t an option. I just don’t have the time or energy.”

I told her, “That’s exactly why it deserves to be an option. You need something that gives you hope, impetus and forward momentum. Otherwise, one week looks like the next and before you know it, years pass by and you’re left wondering, ‘What happened?!”’

Pick something, a person you want to re-connect with, an art class you can take once a month, that lights you up just thinking about it. We need a NEXT in our life so we have what the Japanese call IKIGAI, a reason to get up in the morning.

This Happiness Box can help you identify ONE THING you can do – even in the midst of your many responsibilities – that helps you feel you’re making the most of life now, not later.

2.      How Can I Talk Myself INTO My Moonshot Instead of OUT of It?

“May our choices reflect our hopes, not our fears.” – Nelson Mandela

A college student saw an announcement for her dream job but it required a business degree, which she didn’t have yet. She almost talked herself out of applying, but then saw Nelson Mandela’s quote and realized her fears were holding her back from what she wanted. She submitted her resume and explained she was working her way through college and was in charge of an on-campus community service club. She got the job, and is so grateful she went for what she wanted instead of letting her doubts talk her out of even applying.

Are you indulging in doubts? Are you telling yourself, “This will never happen?” That’s called failure-forecasting. Follow her example and talk yourself INTO pursuing your dream instead of OUT of even trying. Want more ways to hack your fears? Check out this story of a woman who overcame her fear of the ocean (and sharks!) by making the daunting do-able.


Next week – more from Sam Horn! Part Two Here.

Sam Horn

Sam Horn

Sam is the founder and CEO at The Intrigue Agency and author of Got Your Attention? Her keynote addresses receive raves from Intel, Cisco, NASA, Accenture, Boeing, Capital One, and its why her work has been featured in the New York Times, Forbes, INC, and Fast Company.

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