A search for purpose is not something that happens overnight. It’s a lifetime commitment.
Where Does My Search For Purpose Begin?
The search for purpose doesn’t always “start” in a certain spot. Think of it this way: every day your search continues. But, the longer you go, the closer you get (with reassurance) to that purpose.
Start thinking with your heart, not your brain
Your heart is where your passions lie. It tells you what you like and also what you love.
When you start getting into the tough work and areas of no interest, your heart will help lead you.
This is really important when you start a project. It will help define your why and the reason you keep going.
Speaking of passion, if you are (or know) a mother, head over to the Passion Brewing Momma’s Blog for more encouragement.
Attend a liberal arts college
Are you a person that wants to attend college, but has no idea what to major in? One option is to attend a liberal arts college. Here, you will get to attend a broad base of classes, opening your mind to what you like (and also what you don’t like) to do.
This kind of approach will be helpful because you can experience many different types of subjects and latch onto those that catch your interest.
After you get past your undergraduate studies, you’ll [hopefully] have a better picture of what to major in.
Don’t give up when you can’t find it
Just because you’ve been looking for a week, a month, or even a year, doesn’t mean you’ve found it. Yes, for some people, it might come sooner, but this might not be true in your case.
Remember this also: your life is going to have so many ups and downs that the search might be delayed. Maybe you’ve had a new child and need to focus on the moment. Or, maybe you need to show love to your dog and potty train.
Whatever the case is, be patient (easier said than done, I know) and be aware.
Think about your talents and skills
Everyone has something that they are good at. Every person out there. Including you.
Think about the talents that you have.
Also, what are the skills that come naturally to you?
If you like to paint, that’s a talent. Not everyone is good at it… I’m one of those people 🙂
If you are a great speaker, that’s a skill.
Heads-up! There’s a difference between a talent and a skill.
Talent: an innate ability to do something (naturally)
Skill: an acquired ability through hard work and practice.
So, if you’re good at something naturally, it’s your talent.
Conversely, when you are very good at something through practice and hard work, it’s a skill.
How To Find Purpose in Life in 5 Minutes: Ted Talk with Adam Leipzig
Although I’m a little skeptical about this method, a guy named Adam Leipzig claims to help you find purpose in only five minutes.
It’s pretty interesting that you can sum up your purpose in only five questions though.
Here are the five questions Adam asked in case you missed the video:
- Who are you?
- What do you do?
- Who do you do it for?
- For the people who you do it for: What do those people want or need?
- And what did those people get out of it? How did they change as a result?
When you have the answer to those five questions, rest assured that your feeling for purpose will be stronger.
Are You Looking For Purpose or Passion?
I’ve always wondered about this question and the more I try to live with purpose, the more it becomes clear.
Passions are those talents and skills that you have that you love to do. Not like or like a whole lot, but love.
Shannon in this article says it this way, “When you lead a passionate life you are living your life on purpose.”
She lists out six job titles and lists them as her passions.
A Spiritual Perspective to Consider
As a Christian, following a biblical approach helps me. This may be a different case for you, and that’s fine.
When one follows a higher being, it can really help guide decisions, re-check morals, and remember your why.
I think this helps because then we see ourselves as not the one in control, but the one surrendering.
Proverbs 19:21 says,
“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails” (Proverbs 19:21).
In a modern version of Proverbs 19:21,
“We humans keep brainstorming options and plans,
but God’s purpose prevails.” MSG
Finding Purpose in a Career: Does it Exist?
Many of you out there are working in great careers. Work that you love to do each and every day, but the importance of finding purpose is not apparent.
This is where it gets tricky; just because you are good at something, doesn’t mean that you are passionate about it.
Try to find those areas that come naturally to you in your job.
Do you love to file folders?
Are you great at bringing conversations together from other people and helping them solve problems?
Does your perfectionism lead to great attention to detail?
Are you the technical go-to?
If you work in the corporate world, there might be a position for you that involves those talents. Maybe another department would love to have your talent.
And, if you’ve been working for years feeling like you’re on cruise control, it’s possible a talent will be discovered that leads you on your next journey.
Maybe an entrepreneurial start?
Will I Know When I Have Found Purpose in My Life?
From a personal perspective, I don’t think anyone knows for sure when they’ve found their purpose.
But, one thing is for sure. If you continue to search, there will be a point in life where you realize that the actions you take each day are more meaningful.
This means more people will be helped by your talents, skills, and intentions.
Isn’t that a great thought?
That’s it for today.
Take care; your purpose is waiting.