This weekend my friend Frank and I discussed what it means to be driven and realized that it is hard to define. He told me that he considered a mutual friend of ours to be driven because: "That person is able to clearly articulate their goals."
I told him that goal setting is only part of the story, and in fact, I think it is a smaller part of the story. I break down being driven into three parts.
This is different from having a goal. Purpose can be vague. It can be as clear as: "I want to have and run my own company", or "I want to be the best father possible", or "I want to rid the world of malnutrition". Purpose comes in many shapes and sizes. It can be hard to define. And it changes. But purpose is the air that fuels your fire.
I strongly believe everyone has a higher purpose, a meaning for their life in our society that transcends their own.
Even if you do not have a clear grip over your purpose, you should still be able to visualize your path. What are the possible next steps? Do you create a life open to new opportunities. It doesn't mean everything has to be planned out. It just means you should plan. Try to crystalize your purpose and desires into actual steps.
The best definition I ever heard of discipline was.
"Doing what you need to do, when you have to do it, even when you do not want to."
Being driven means you take action to follow your path guided by your purpose. You do not watch the world go by. You shape your life through actions, even if / when you do not want to.
My friend Frank spoke of another mutual friend who has their own company. And said: "Is this person driven because they started their own company and has to make it work or did they start their own company because they are driven?"
I said, it doesn't matter. The friend made the choice, and is now gunning for it. He is doing what he has to, even when he doesn't want to.
Anything I'm missing? What does it mean to be driven to you.