I was driving home from a day of work when I had a moment of clarity. It came after a discussion I had with a friend that day about staying true to who you are as a person and aligning that to your work. Perhaps you could think of it as your personal mission statement of sorts. Three simple words sum it up for me:

Happy. Healthy. Helpful.

Put them in any order. And when you get all three together – it could be a bit magical.

When I consider some of my past work experiences, I have one that captures all three. VERB was a campaign from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention about getting 9-13 year olds physically active. We brought more play to kids resulting in happy kids. We increased physical activity in tweens resulting in healthier kids. We provided creative and inspirational materials to schools and community-based organizations resulting in being helpful to teachers and staff. Check out an earlier Blog of mine to learn more.

Beyond VERB, all my work experience aligns with at least one of the three H's.

It is something special when you can bring joy to others and certainly working on Nintendo’s game release for Animal Crossing delivered on that. Shooting the commercials in New Zealand was just a bonus! And whether it was working on Coca-Cola (there is a bit of joy in every bottle) or delivering thrilling experiences for teenage boys with Ball Park Franks, it was fun.  

When you know you are helping people transform their lives to something better that too is something special such as my time at DeVry University. Education transforms lives and helps people reach career goals and increased earnings across their lifetime. Another example was working on Earth Hour with World Wildlife Fund. This one night, one-hour experience demonstrated that small changes can help save the climate.

Being healthy is a personal goal most people can agree on (in theory, at least…practice is a bit of a challenge!). I enjoyed knowing my work with Northwestern Medicine would help build stronger connections to the community and allow patients access to the care they needed. Even my efforts as a product manager for a start-up “better for you” food company meant I provided healthier options to consumers.

What three words would you use for your own mission statement?


Photo: Amy Mikel. Avon Breast Cancer Walk, Chicago. June 2016.