How to use anger to define your personal vision

Today’s Cheese Factor: DEFCON 5

Today’s edition of Tom’s Monthly Cheese is rated at DEFCON 5… hold on tight!

What makes you angry?

Clark Griswold - Family Vacation Did you know this is a great way to determine your own values, to establish a personal vision?

In Christmas Vacation you get to know, truly know, who Clark Griswold is. Clark is angry. More than that, though – He is the last true family man. He’ll go to any length to preserve the sacred family traditions.

Clark knows who he is. He is true to himself and I argue that when you are true to yourself, you are capable of amazing things.

What does it mean to be true to yourself? What if you’re not even sure who you are? How can you excel in life and in your career if you aren’t even sure who you are?

Rest assured there is an answer. You must define your personal vision. To do this, you may first want to look at your life… the end of your life and your last days on earth. You may want to ask yourself, “How will I be remembered?”

Your obituary can give you clear direction in your life and career

What will be said of you? Even your headstone will turn to dust, but what will remain of you? What is your legacy? Is it outrageous to relate this type of thinking back to your career? I don’t think so. What we do with our hands, our time and our talents speaks to our legacy.

Pondering your obituary can:

  • Help you make decisions.
  • Be true to yourself.
  • Excel in your life, at home and at work.
  • Help you to know what you want to do tomorrow, next week and next year.

They did a study on an amoeba. They created a utopia for this amoeba to live in. There was no stress, no high temperatures, no enemy cells, no challenges, no work. He could just sit and be an amoeba. How great. Well the amoeba shriveled up and turned to a lifeless cell. It died. Comfort and doing nothing will actually amount to what? Nothing. Hard work, challenges, etc… shape us and make us better people.

Three questions you must answer

  1. How do you know who you want to be?
  2. How many of us turn out to be who we want to be?
  3. What makes us who we are?

To answer these questions, you need to know your purpose.

Your purpose (or ‘vision’) is made up of three things:

  1. Your Core Values
  2. Your Passion
  3. Your Life experiences

Knowing how these 3 things are incorporated into your life can help you to write your obituary.

The Kid Part 9 (Minutes: 6:11-9:31)

The Kid Part 10 (Minutes: 0-2:05)

How will you be remembered?

When you consider your obituary and the last days of your life, what will be the answer to these questions?

  1. People say I stood for…
  2. I made a difference in the world by…
  3. People I knew I loved them because…

Will your headstone read like Alexander Hamilton’s?

In testimony of Their Respect
The PATRIOT of incorruptible INTEGRITY.
The SOLDIER of approved VALOUR.
The STATESMAN of consummate WISDOM.
Whose TALENTS and VIRTUES will be admired
Long after this MARBLE shall have moldered into

What would it be like to be worthy of being called a patriot? A statesman, a true friend, a man with an incredible work ethic, a man who put others first.

Do we even think about these traits/virtues? What if we did?

What if we had a personal vision driven by how we want to be remembered? Do you have a personal vision that drives you? I’d love to hear ‘em – post your thoughts below!

2010-12-08T10:11:55+00:00 December 8th, 2010|


  1. Jill Kunkel December 9, 2010 at 7:41 am - Reply

    Tom, you’re awesome. This is a great post and a fabulous way to start my day.

  2. Tom Brauch December 9, 2010 at 1:58 pm - Reply

    Glad I could offer a jump start!

Leave A Comment