An Exploration on Purpose
Throughout the month of August, we researched the topic of Purpose - the intentional way in which we live our lives, the strengths and values that differentiate us, and our unique contribution to our surrounding environments. As part of that exploration, we asked members of the WYLD Tribe what Purpose is all about for them and how they have set out to build meaning into their daily lives. Here's what they had to say.
Trace Shambaugh is a WYLD hero. His everyday work may appear to a cityslicker like the cowboy stories we’ve all grown up with, but after studying the day in and day out physical and mental labor it takes to run a cattle ranch, it’s obvious this man is truly in flow and found his life’s rhythm and mission.
Trace is equally as humble as he is hardworking - He says his purpose “is to be a better person than I was yesterday. I do what I do because I'm tested daily - with animals, land and people. I never get bored. I like to see the fruits of my efforts and to me ranching is the best way to do that. My contribution to the world is to be the best person that I can be. Husband, father, and friend to other people. I help people wherever I can. My proudest success is that the ranch improves every year on some aspect whether that’s increased production on hay, healthier cattle with better genetics or better team organization and operations.”
If you come to a WYLD West retreat, you will meet Trace and get his sagely advice on how to move cows and ride a horse - his lifestyle is truly a daily leadership exercise.
Photographer & Entrepreneur
To be present is an epic task, but if we’re able to bask in even some of those innocent joyous moments I think we’re on the right path. I sincerely believe there’s a reason for being here and there’s a purpose we must all fulfill. The ultimate challenge in life is finding those purposes (as I don’t believe one has just one single purpose) and learn to discover what makes this very short time we have here in this realm the best it can be.
As the to-do list looms, I get to tackling the emails, client calls and editing—the less fun bits of being a photographer and entrepreneur. The fun parts however, the act of capturing moments, be it sentimental, amusing or emotional, is where I find my purpose. Sharing the subtle splendors of life and split second memories through my photographs.
As I create imagery, I’m constantly procuring that “OK to dawdle” moment: that split second of being unabashedly present. This comes in various forms; in moments of laughter and tears, in moments of complete stillness, in landscapes and in ocean breezes. I then offer these captured snip-bits to the world in hopes that they too will experience that moment to dawdle. Permission granted. Gift sent and received.
Senior Associate at Rocky Mountain Institute
After 3 different roles and 7 years in real estate finance, I wanted more. It was time to reconnect with my inner environmentalist and for me that meant starting with a research deep dive. After a lot of reading, I discovered a passion for sustainable design, so I went back to grad school to formalize that education and pivot my career.
Now I'm leveraging my finance background to strengthen the business case for sustainability in the built environment, working in Colorado at a clean energy nonprofit 'think-and-do tank' (Rocky Mountain Institute). Every day I get to develop and scale market-based solutions that reduce carbon emissions from our buildings.
We're all just one hard decision away from having a whole different life.
Founder of Loli Beauty
What gives me purpose?
The past decade opened our minds to the understanding that food is medicine. Then in the last five years, we began to eat for beauty – from bone broth packed with collagen builders, to leafy greens full of antioxidants meant to repair the damage we inflicted on our complexions after years of unprotected sun exposure. In Eat Pretty, Jolene Hart says that science is finally offering the proof to what we already know — “We are what we eat” and that “Beauty is wellness and wellness is beauty.” To take this one step further, our bodies, made up of mostly water, are subject to energetic vibration that transforms into tangible and visible matter. Think to moments when you were uncontrollably happy, didn’t you also look fabulous — or alternatively, when you were scared, angry or nervous, didn’t that mysterious furrow wrinkle look deeper?
I love getting up everyday to stir up beauty to make a conscious change — from sourcing sustainable, superfood ingredients to personalizing skin, hair and body treatments that resonate with each person’s unique physical and spiritual state of being. As our individual beauty becomes more tactile, we become more visible to everyone including ourselves.
What is my contribution to the world?
Stirring things up to stop beauty from wasting water and polluting with plastic. By 2050, there will be more plastic in the ocean and fish and by 2025, 5 billion people will be affected globally by water shortage. As the worlds first zero waste, organic beauty brand, we’re making a conscious change with 100% waterless products, ingredients sustainably up-cycled from food and 100% certified, compostable or reusable packaging.
What is my day like?
As a female founder — who loves to be in ritual — sitting in a tech accelerator, no day is ever the same. From meeting investors or scavenging the globe for the next, best ingredient to hosting a forgiveness ritual in central park, I’m always on the go. One of my lessons is practice the prioritization of self-care that LOLI Beauty represents. In fact, “LOLI” stands for Living Organic Loving Ingredients!