In our first MindVUZE Q&A Session, we were honoured to quiz one of the most inspirational women in this country. Tumi Sibanda is a personal mission coach…something we found very interesting. In 2015, she earned her stripes as a Thought Leader when she released her book, “My Voice Through My Eyes”.
Check out the Q&A below:
MindVUZE: What is a personal mission and why is it important?
Tumi: A mission by definition is a special assignment. In my context, a personal mission is one’s life work linked to one’s purpose. It is important for individuals to clarify their purpose and their personal mission to enable them to live a fulfilling life. I believe that we all have a mission to fulfill here on earth and life can’t be complete until that mission is accomplished.
MindVUZE: What are some of the crossroads that one can find themselves in if they do not discover their personal mission?
Tumi: Fulfilling one’s personal mission helps you to live a life of significance. This implies that your life is not just about you but for others as well. So, with that in mind, we are most likely to find ourselves at crossroads if we live just for ourselves. Living for ourselves may be fulfilling for sometime but a void starts to develop as we grow in our consciousness. When living selfishly is no longer enough, we find ourselves at crossroads, looking for more life has to offer. This can be in our relationships, our careers, our spiritual lives just to name a few. When this happens, we find ourselves feeling lost with a big void that can’t seem to fill up no matter what we do. This normally calls for a journey within, for us to find ourselves and discover our purpose and personal mission.
MindVUZE: We are currently living in an economy where jobs are hard to find. This tends to be frustrating. Using their personal mission, how can unemployed people slot themselves into the main stream economy?
Tumi: Knowing one’s mission has a potential to open up one’s mind and improve creativity. When you know your mission you start seeing opportunities where you can use it to solve existing problems. You start seeing how you can serve your community and society at large. This is when some business ideas are born.
MindVUZE: The culture of active citizenship is very crucial in ensuring that we all play our part in shaping the economy. Where does personal mission come into play when it comes to active citizenship? How do we mix self and selfless?
Tumi: Embedded in our personal mission is passion. If we all identify where our passions lie, we can then channel those passions into projects that will fulfill us and at the same time contribute to nation building. This is where active citizenship comes into play, making meaningful contribution through one’s passion.
MindVUZE: How crucial is discovering a personal mission at an early stage (youth) and what is the impact of that in shaping an economy? Can a personal mission be found at an early stage?
Tumi: This is a tricky one. There are those who do discover their mission early in life. What is key here is to recognise that as a youth, one is still developing and growing. It is during this stage when one should explore their talents, abilities and passions. As a youth your passions will evolve with time. As our passions are consolidated and entrenched this helps the journey to finding one’s personal mission. Sometimes our personal experiences and stories lead us to our mission. We see this often with people who have gone through hardships and experienced breakthroughs.
MindVUZE: What is the correlation between a personal mission and leadership in terms of shaping an economy?
Tumi: I don’t have statistical evidence to present to show correlation. It is however worth noting that in my personal experience, through my mentors, peers and coaching clients, I can confidently say there is a correlation between personal mission and leadership in terms of shaping an economy. People who have clarified their personal mission know what they want. These are people who tend to have an ability to create opportunities for themselves and go for them. A mission driven life is a life which seeks to serve others. It is a life of path finding. It is a life of recognising opportunities and taking advantage of them. Where opportunities are not visible, they are created.
MindVUZE: Do economic changes impact on one’s personal mission? Is it dictated or affected by external changes? Because we have seen leaders start off by having a certain vision and it changing at a later stage.
Tumi: I believe that when the external environment changes, this impacts on the HOW the mission is fulfilled. For example, if one’s mission is to contribute towards food security in the continent of Africa, this can take different forms. The changes in economy, climate or political environment will call for different strategies. This talks to the HOW to accomplish the mission. It does not necessarily change the mission. This does not mean people’s mission cannot change. It can as our mission work yield desired results and our passions evolve.
MindVUZE: Where, in society, should personal mission be taught for those who do not have a coach?
Tumi: My mission is to make living a mission driven life a reality worldwide. This calls for awareness to be made available at home level and from primary education level. You would notice that there are schools that instill in young learners a service mindset. This helps young people to start experiencing serving at an early age. It is at this stage that we should encourage young people to explore their passions.
MindVUZE: The conversation about personal mission, how often are we having these conversations in society? Can we have those conversations at home?
Tumi: In the work that I do as a Coach, my experience is that we don’t talk enough about living a mission driven life. The conversation is either non-existent or minimal at best. This is one of the reasons why I do quarterly conversations to unpack the human vessel. The home and schools are a good place to start the conversation about the importance of living a life of service driven by a personal mission.
MindVUZE: You have a book now, My Voice Through My Eyes. What can leaders, economy shapers and those that want to participate in the economy learn from your book?
Tumi: The key message from my book is: Get to know who you are, learn what your personal mission is and step into that mission and live. Honour who you are in all that you do. Don’t let fear stop you from living. Recognise that it is never too late to start. Ask for help when you need it. Celebrate yourself and those who help you. Finally, you have the power to create the life you want. Start!