Finding Your Purpose. How Does One Find Their Purpose?
“A man who has a why to live for can bare almost any how” — Viktor Frankl
Your fulfillment in life often has nothing to do with the possessions you acquire or the money you make.
Usually, it has everything to do… with your sense of purpose.
If you’re struggling to find purpose in your life, and you feel as if you might not even have one.
First off, I want to say — that’s ok.
Depending on what your idea of purpose is, it can sometimes take years or decades to find it. And even then, it sometimes changes and evolves.
And look, I know how you feel — you’re scrambling through your brain asking your self “why does it seem like everyone else around me has found their purpose, but I just can’t?”.
You almost feel like you’re behind schedule, like somethings missing from your life.
In this article, you’ll learn what purpose is and how it can help you. And how you can begin to find it.
(Even in the little things).
So, what do you say? Let’s go find your purpose.
What is Purpose?
How Can it Help
Having a sense of purpose in your life is something all human beings strive for. When life gets difficult (which it will) purpose often can give us the strength to keep moving forward.
In the famous book: “Mans Search For Meaning” by Viktor Frankl. A practitioner consulted him because he had severe depression.
The elderly man had lost his wife 2 years ago and was struggling to cope.
Instead of telling the doctor anything, Frankl confronted the man and asked “What would have happened if you had died and you’re wife had to deal with the grief?”.
The man replied, “She would have suffered terribly”.
Frankl went on to say “Now such suffering has been spared her, at the price that you have to survive and mourn her.”.
The man shook Viktor Frankl’s hand and left his office.
This is obviously an extreme case, but it goes to show how powerful a sense of meaning can be in someone’s life. Especially during difficult times.
It gives you direction, strength and so much more.
What Does it Mean
The dictionary definition for purpose is: “The reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists”.
Just like our legs exist to walk. And our mouth exists in order to eat, drink and talk.
You exist to do — whatever it is, you’re meant to do.
Sometimes the answer to that question is as complex and grandiose as helping mankind better their mental health. Sometimes it’s as simple as enjoying life with your family.
I’ll be explaining shortly, how and why it’s important to have both aspects in your life.
It’s Different for Everyone
Purpose is different for everyone.
Whether you’re a:
Purpose differs from person to person.
However — I will state there are some common purposes humans share with one another.
(We’ll talk about those in a minute).
But the point I want to get across is — you shouldn’t feel like your purpose should be the same as everyone else’s.
In fact most of the time it won’t be.
You’re a unique individual with your own set of skills and passions.
Finding Your Purpose
Purpose can be found in almost anything you do. Whether it’s taking care of your family, or simply going for a walk with your dog.
There are day-to-day things we can consider as our purpose and life-long careers or visions we can consider.
I’m going to be talking about both.
The little things matter. They do.
Thanksgiving dinner with your family.
Spending time with your kids.
Hanging out with your friends and spending time doing things you love.
They all matter.
So often people think they’re supposed to have a grandiose purpose like sending mankind to Mars. But, what if I told you purpose can be found in the little things you do daily.
Maybe it’s going to your kid’s baseball practice or enjoying quality time with your partner.
Sometimes all it takes is a little presence, gratitude, and realization that these moments matter.
Not only to you. But to the people around you.
The Big Picture
Little things aside — the big picture is where the magic really happens. That’s not to discredit the little things, because I think they’re important. If not the most important.
But, having a life purpose is critical for your drive, fulfillment, and happiness.
Your life purpose can evolve and change — depending upon your interests, life experiences, and where you’re at in your life.
And, the intensity and ambitions of purpose can vary from person to person.
Let’s look at two examples:
- Elon Musk: Clearly he feels his purpose is to help mankind progress in more ways than one. He’s created affordable eco-friendly vehicles and he even plans on sending humans to Mars. The reason Elon Musk has been able to reach such a pinnacle of success is due to his purpose. Say what you will about him, but his strong sense of purpose and direction has helped him in many ways.
- Cassandra: She feels as if her purpose is to help and heal others. So, she pursued a career as a nurse. Many of the difficulties and obstacles she faced during school and life, in general, were easily conquered due to her purpose to help and health others. It’s a passion of hers and it makes her fulfilled and happy.
Two different people. Two different purposes. One common factor.
They live life with purpose.
Inevitably life is going to knock you down. It’s going to be hard some days and some days you may not want to get out of bed.
Having a vision for your life and a higher purpose can help you push through the difficult times and live a more fulfilling and happy life.
Passion and Presence
Now, with all of this talk about purpose. You might be wondering “how am I supposed to find my purpose?”.
But — I want you to understand, your purpose can change. As I said before your life experiences, passions, and interests all play a role in this.
So, let’s talk about passion.
Passion is kind of a tossed-around word. But, it’s important when you’re trying to find your purpose. And more specifically purpose within a career you’re pursuing.
If you are struggling to find your “passions” I would encourage you to follow your curiosities.
Curiosities lead to passion and passion can often lead to purpose.
I think passion is important when it comes to discovering your purpose because if you love what you do — it’ll bring you fulfillment.
If you’re also able to tie that to a higher purpose — you’ve hit a home run!
Look at me for example. I love writing and fitness — hence why I’m a health and fitness writer.
But if I dive even deeper within myself I know I love helping people, serving people, and making the world a happier and better place.
That’s my higher purpose — helping people.
The greatest part of you’re higher sense of purpose — is it can be translated to other careers.
Have you ever heard the saying: “Never attach yourself to a job or career but instead a purpose”.
Purpose is something you carry everywhere with you. You can bring it to any career. And as long as you feel you’re fulfilling that purpose it’ll give your life meaning.
Presence is another important factor. Particularly with the little things.
Have you ever traveled to a new country and just been in awe of your surroundings?
Every mountain, building, and body of water leave you with your jaw dropped and filled with wonder.
It’s in these moments when we really experience presence.
But it’s not just these moments you should be striving to experience presence.
It’s the days you spend with your kids or parents. Rather than worrying and thinking about work, try being in the present moment and enjoying your time.
This can be applied to many areas of life. When your play sports with friends, or when you’re enjoying Thanksgiving dinner with family.
As silly as it seems, these little moments of presence give your life purpose.
Too often we think that purpose is tied with our career or a grandiose vision.
But, what if our purpose sometimes can be something as simple as… experiencing life.
Purpose is an essential part of living a happy and fulfilling life.
It’s a need all humans crave and long for.
You can find purpose in the little things, or in your ambitions for changing the world.
The main point is to find purpose no matter what. It doesn’t matter if you find it in raising your kids, or in the work you do.
Life without purpose is hard, there’s no question about that.
So, why not make it easier on yourself?
Guest post by Kyle Stevenson