Mitch Skiles


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Adopting a Personal Mission Statement to Guide Motivation In Action

I'll include an excerpt from an article I wrote on this subject (which can be seen in full at

Without a life mission statement, there is no connection between your true soul and the reality in which it resides. Character is observed through action, but brought to life through its motivation at the very core of your being. That motivation is the answer to the most important question of introspection. We all think we know why we act. Since our child development we have been branded with a moral compass guiding us in our decisions. We like to believe what we do is in the name of our God or for the honor of our family name. We give acts of kindness out of selflessness and remain loyal to respect deep friendships. At least, that’s how we often answer the question of motivation.

But no matter how much we would like to believe these answers are reality, this is not always the case. The mind is fascinating. In fact, when asked a difficult question, we typically use an unconscious substitution method instantaneously replacing the difficult question with an easier one. ”Why do I act?” becomes “What is a good reason to act?” It’s a case of psychological confirmation—confirm what we believe to be true because it hurts a lot less than having to admit we might be wrong. Self-inflicted pain is difficult, especially self-inflicted pain to the soul. Rather than admit ill-intentions we always tend to believe what we are doing is right. I suggest that if we are not willing to face the pain of recognizing our faulty motives, than we have failed to establish a true core mission—for a core mission instills a sense of discipline to hold ourselves to it.

Once again you may read more here: (

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    Aug 29 2012: I believe with you, Mitch, in having a core mission plus some basic values for the journey. The mission can change.

    It's kind of like having a trunk for the tree.
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    Gail .

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    Aug 29 2012: I do not have a personal mission statement, but I do have an understanding of who and what I am and my place in the multiverse.

    I spent MANY years exploring my belief system. I was quite amazed by how many invalid beliefs, untested assumptions, and conflicting (opposing) beliefs I held. As I extricated the problem-causing beliefs, and replaced them with factually supportable beliefs, my worldview had changed so dramatically that I don't know how to begin addressing your idea in 2k characters or less.

    I have discovered that self-inflicted pain (intense emotions) are like a compass that point to mistaken beliefs.
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    Aug 29 2012: Humans are inherently selfish, it's something that resides in the deepest recesses of our mind. It believe it stems from the overpowering instinct for survival. However, at some point along our evolutional journey, we realized that we are only as strong as those around us, that in order to survive we must help others to survive, that in turn they may help us to survive. I believe this is closely related to empathy, and whether empathy gave way to this logic or it was the other way around I'm not entirely sure. Evolution is nothing more than a genetic mutation that positively affects the species and promotes survival. If it hasn't already been discovered, I'm sure that the human genome for empathy and the overall willingness to help your fellow man does indeed exist. So at it's most fundamental level, I believe that indeed there is a conflict within us, a duality that exist between what we want versus what is good for the whole, which really points back to what is good for us. :-)
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    Aug 29 2012: Missions describe action. What to do.

    I would rather focus on who I am and let the do confirm that.
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    Aug 29 2012: Why would anyone act in the first place apart from providing food and shelter and to support his or her kin.
    A good reason could be to stop senseless behavior that neglect or destroy everything valuable but what next?

    I never had a mission other than to let everyone and everything thrive and flourish but if you need to sell a product or a faith, things are different.

    Could be though that I do not understand much of your writing.