What Will You Chase If You Don’t Have Purpose?

Are you currently searching for your purpose in life?

Are you in your purpose, but need more motivation or inspiration?

Then you’ve come to the right place.

If any of these questions apply to you, then check out my guy Dr. Clarence M. Lee Jr. MD. His latest video “What Will You Chase If You Don’t Have Purpose?”, will answer them for you, and help guide you towards your purpose in life. This video is truly worth every moment of viewing. This video is apart of a continuous series that is ongoing. Be on the lookout for more great content.


Finding Work-Life Balance with the Four Burners Theory

One way to think about work-life balance issues is with a concept known as The Four Burners Theory. Here’s how it was first explained to me: Imagine that your life is represented by a stove with four burners on it. Each burner symbolizes one major quadrant of your life.

  1. The first burner represents your family.
  2. The second burner is your friends.
  3. The third burner is your health.
  4. The fourth burner is your work.

The Four Burners Theory says that “in order to be successful you have to cut off one of your burners. And in order to be really successful you have to cut off two.”

Three Views of the Four Burners

My initial reaction to The Four Burners Theory was to search for a way to bypass it. “Can I succeed and keep all four burners running?” I wondered.


Perhaps I could combine two burners. “What if I lumped family and friends into one category?”

Maybe I could combine health and work. “I hear sitting all day is unhealthy. What if I got a standing desk?” Now, I know what you are thinking. Believing that you will be healthy because you bought a standing desk is like believing you are a rebel because you ignored the fasten seatbelt sign on an airplane, but whatever.

Soon I realized I was inventing these workarounds because I didn’t want to face the real issue: life is filled with tradeoffs. If you want to excel in your work and in your marriage, then your friends and your health may have to suffer. If you want to be healthy and succeed as a parent, then you might be forced to dial back your career ambitions. Of course, you are free to divide your time equally among all four burners, but you have to accept that you will never reach your full potential in any given area.

Essentially, we are forced to choose. Would you rather live a life that is unbalanced, but high-performing in a certain area? Or would you rather live a life that is balanced, but never maximizes your potential in a given quadrant?

What is the best way to handle these work-life balance problems? I don’t claim to have it figured out, but here are three ways of thinking about The Four Burners Theory.

Option 1: Outsource Burners

We outsource small aspects of our lives all the time. We buy fast food so we don’t have to cook. We go to the dry cleaners to save time on laundry. We visit the car repair shop so we don’t have to fix our own automobile.


Outsourcing small portions of your life allows you to save time and spend it elsewhere. Can you apply the same idea to one quadrant of your life and free up time to focus on the other three burners?

Work is the best example. For many people, work is the hottest burner on the stove. It is where they spend the most time and it is the last burner to get turned off. In theory, entrepreneurs and business owners can outsource the work burner. They do it by hiring employees.

In my article on The 3 Stages of Failure, I covered Sam Carpenter’s story about building business systems that allowed him to work just 2 hours per week. He outsourced himself from the daily work of the business while still reaping the financial benefits.

Parenting is another example. Working parents are often forced to “outsource” the family burner by dropping their children off at daycare or hiring a babysitter. Calling this outsourcing might seem unfair, but—like the work example above—parents are paying someone else to keep the burner running while they use their time elsewhere.

The advantage of outsourcing is that you can keep the burner running without spending your time on it. Unfortunately, removing yourself from the equation is also a disadvantage. Most entrepreneurs, artists, and creators I know would feel bored and without a sense of purpose if they had nothing to work on each day. Every parent I know would rather spend time with their children than drop them off at daycare.

Outsourcing keeps the burner running, but is it running in a meaningful way?

Option 2: Embrace Constraints

One of the most frustrating parts of The Four Burners Theory is that it shines a light on your untapped potential. It can be easy to think, “If only I had more time, I could make more money or get in shape or spend more time at home.”

One way to manage this problem is to shift your focus from wishing you had more time to maximizing the time you have. In other words, you embrace your limitations. The question to ask yourself is, “Assuming a particular set of constraints, how can I be as effective as possible?”

For example:

  • Assuming I can only work from 9 AM to 5 PM, how can I make the most money possible?
  • Assuming I can only write for 15 minutes each day, how can I finish my book as fast as possible?
  • Assuming I can only exercise for 3 hours each week, how can I get in the best shape possible?

This line of questioning pulls your focus toward something positive (getting the most out of what you have available) rather than something negative (worrying about never having enough time). Furthermore, well-designed limitations can actually improve your performance.

Of course, there are disadvantages as well. Embracing constraints means accepting that you are operating at less than your full potential. Yes, there are plenty of ways to “work smarter, not harder” but it is difficult to avoid the fact that where you spend your time matters. If you invested more time into your health or your relationships or your career, you would likely see improved results in that area.

Option 3: The Seasons of Life

A third way to manage your four burners is by breaking your life into seasons. What if, instead of searching for perfect work-life balance at all times, you divided your life into seasons that focused on a particular area?

The importance of your burners may change throughout life. When you are in your 20s or 30s and you don’t have children, it can be easier to get to the gym and chase career ambitions. The health and work burners are on full blast. A few years later, you might start a family and suddenly the health burner dips down to a slow simmer while your family burner gets more gas. Another decade passes and you might revive relationships with old friends or pursue that business idea you had been putting off.

You don’t have to give up on your dreams forever, but life rarely allows you to keep all four burners going at once. Maybe you need to let go of something for this season. You can do it all in a lifetime, but not at the same damn time. In the words of Nathan Barry, “Commit to your goal with everything you have—for a season.”

For the last five years, I have been in my entrepreneurship season. I built a successful business, but it came with costs. I turned my friends burner way down and my family burner is only running halfway.

What season are you in right now?

Work-Life Balance: Which Burners Have You Cut Off?

The Four Burners Theory reveals an inconsistency everyone must deal with: nobody likes being told they can’t have it all, but everyone has constraints on their time and energy. Every choice has a cost.

Which burners have you cut off?

By: James Clear

4 Networking Tips You Can’t Underestimate When Going After Your Dream Job

Are you ready for my biggest networking secret? “Networking” is just a fancy word for making friends.

When I was looking for a job in San Francisco, I figured out pretty quickly that networking is king. I’d tried applying to jobs on my own, but I was getting frustrated.

A friend offered to help out. She passed along my resume and the emails, phone interviews and face-to-face interviews started to roll in. Suddenly, the interview process became a breeze.

The job I landed and took required no cover letter, phone interview or even formal interview. I had a few conversations with members of the accounting team. That’s it.

I went from pulling my hair out by spending hours on job apps to sitting in meetings with some of the most creative people in the business. Apple, Virgin Airlines, Oakley — these people were the real deal.

Below, I’ll share a few tips to help you step up your networking game, expand your social circle and land the job you’re looking for:

1. Offer help first.

Everyone has that friend who only comes around when he or she needs something. Don’t be that friend.

Ask questions first: “What do you do?” “What are you interested in?” “Do you live here in the city?”

Listen fully. Trying to speed date the person you’re talking to is not only tacky, but it’s also ineffective. You don’t need to meet everyone in the room. You just need to meet the right people in the room.

After listening to the person, offer some way to help. Connect the person with someone in his or her field. Pass along or offer to take a look at his or her resume.

Ask him or her out to coffee if you’re really feeling it. When people like you, they’re going to be willing to help you.

An added bonus? In all likelihood, if you offer to help him or her, he or she is going to like you. You might make a friend.

2. Be inclusive.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re at a formal networking mixer or a friend’s party: Be inclusive.

Suppose Amy Schumer is talking to Jennifer Lawrence at an after-party. In the middle of the chat, Bradley Cooper walks up to Jennifer. They’re great friends, so Jennifer turns her back to Amy and chats away with Bradley.

This is rude. But it happens all the time at networking events. (I hope Jennifer would never do this.)

Instead, when a third person comes up, Jennifer can say, “Bradley, it’s so great to see you. This is my friend, Amy. We were just talking about the new season of her show.”

If you don’t know the person who is approaching you, introduce yourself: “Hi, I’m Jennifer. This is Amy. We were just talking about Amy’s new show. What do you do?”

Turning your back on a person you’re talking to – or worse, ignoring someone who is trying to join the conversation – is like letting the new kid sit alone at lunch. Don’t do it.

You never know when someone has something to bring to the table. More importantly, being a good person just feels good.

3. Get involved in a group or league.

My roommate dragged me along to a prospective member’s event for theSpinsters of San Francisco during my first year in SF. I was not a sorority girl (but no judgment to those who are).

This group looked suspiciously like a sorority. But I gave it a chance and now, it’s one of the best things I could’ve ever done. My spinnie friends are some of my best friends. Connecting with them opened up so many doors for me.

Spinsters happily help each other out with job leads, referrals, apartment hunting, etc. The Spinsters of San Francisco even appeared in an answer on “Jeopardy,” and I like to think we’re one of a kind.

Of course, the type of organization you join isn’t just limited to a women’s group. Try a kickball league, young professionals group, arts and crafts class or even church if you’re religious. Look for any place where you can expand your circle of friends.  If you don’t have time to commit to something regular, host a dinner party and have each guest invite someone new.

Every Thanksgiving and spring, the Spinsters host small potlucks in each San Francisco neighborhood. One year, I went to the potluck in the Castro, and it gave me the first glimmer of hope that I might actually make a group of friends as close and as fun as the ones I had in college.

The next year, I hosted a potluck at my place in the Mission. We went wild on Google Doc and coordinated a menu. Everything was fantastic, especially the company.

Making friends in smaller groups is so much easier. While it might be intimidating to attend something small with people you don’t know, take comfort in the fact that everyone is there for the same reason.

4. Be sincere.

I don’t mean for this post to sound transactional. Going into a friendship expecting to find a job, mentor, etc, isn’t cool. I’m not OK with using friends or people in general.

What I hope you took away from this post is the fact that a large circle of friends creates more opportunities and more people you can learn from. Before every interview, I look up the company on LinkedIn to see if I know someone who works there.

If I’m lucky enough to find someone, I send him or her a message with a few questions about the role, company culture, etc. Other times, I have a third connection, which means I know someone who knows someone who works at that company.

I then focus more on what my connection thinks of that person, how happy he or she is at work and if he or she is comfortable enough to introduce me. One of the best career talks I’ve had was at a wine bar in SF with a friend and her friend, who worked at ModCloth.

I’d been infatuated with the company for a while, and so, I loved picking her brain. From that conversation, I learned that pursuing a career there wouldn’t a good fit. I saved myself a ton of time and possibly heartbreak. Friends and friends of friends help you find out things you wouldn’t be able to find by searching the web.

I’ve seen this unique approach to networking work time after time. Not only have I been presented with opportunities I wouldn’t have been presented with otherwise, but I also have expanded my circle of friends.

Surrounding yourself with diverse people you can have solid relationships with will not only help accelerate your career, but it can also have a major impact on your creativity.  You will broaden your worldview.

By: Hannah Tenpas