There will come a day when the question that you’ve been avoiding will finally find a louder voice to get your attention. It’s the question that’s asking what your purpose is in life. And quite frankly, it is one of the hardest ones that we try our best to keep it quiet.
However, it shouldn’t be something to be afraid of. Yes, the idea of having that “baggage” around following you is scary and nagging. But the truth is, you don’t have to pressure yourself to come up with an answer immediately.
Some people might have it easy that they have an idea of what to do with their lives at a young age. But if you’re someone like me who has to go through regrets and mistakes, know that you are still on your way to knowing the answer to that question.
Find What Makes You Forget About the Time
When was the last time you allowed yourself to get absorbed into something to the point that you lost track of time? This moment happened to me last week. I realized that I needed a change of view, so I decided to redecorate my home office.
I remember as a kid how much I am interested in interior design. If you asked me about what concrete paint is ideal for your room, I am as knowledgeable as this source. So I decided to change the color of my walls and reposition my furniture in the office. And let me tell you this, I was so absorbed in the task that I only realized I’m hungry when my stomach decides to rumble.
So when I said, “find what makes you forget about the time”, can you remember a task like mine? We are living in such a fast-paced world that we are so scared of the time. We have deadlines to meet and chores to disseminate throughout our day that we regularly check our phones and watches.
This is inevitable depending on your lifestyle. I understand that we have to follow a routine in order to function efficiently every single day. However, if you’re feeling that you’re living a mundane life, you have to watch out for those tasks that don’t feel like tasks. Whether it’s as simple as mine like painting walls or a random short story that you decided to write on a lazy Sunday, it might remind you of what is the purpose you get out of bed every day.
The idea behind this thought is that the only way to discover your ideas is if you actually do and try your thoughts. It is our habit to overthink and doubt ourselves because it’s easier, while actually following through your idea is the harder job.
Questions like what if I fail, what if it doesn’t work out, what if I don’t like it flood our brains to the point that we end up convincing ourselves not to bother trying at all. You have to slowly teach and rewire yourself that it’s time to start trying things. Finding your purpose takes time and even a mental green light to get you out of your own way and actually start searching.
And even if the negative outcome did happen, the experience itself is still the reward. It’s better to try than spend your days thinking about what could have been. Clarity is way better than regrets, but you will only get that with action.
Satisfy the Empath in You
Another factor that limits you from finding that grand purpose is because you are in love with the idea that there is indeed one grand purpose. But let me tell you this, you have to let go of that idea. We struggle to find it because no matter what we realize or stumble enough, it will never be enough because it won’t be able to compare to that grand purpose we’re seeking.
Maybe when you stop pressuring yourself or comparing yourself with other people, then you will find your purpose. Or perhaps it isn’t just a single purpose, but it’s an accumulation of different realizations and experiences that are meant for you.
That void that we keep on chasing to feel is a cycle that we can’t break out of if you continue with the mindset above. You have to feel connected with yourself and even with those happening around you.
What I mean by this is that one should be empathizing with himself and other people. Altruism and other values have the ability to exceed our own pleasure. The thought of being kind and helpful to those around us without expecting something in return is far more satisfying. This is because you’ve done it to help others feel good, and in return, you ended up feeling better as well.
You don’t have to match the actions of the world’s greatest philanthropists. Do something that you are capable of. Perhaps you can join tree-planting projects or volunteer in dog rescue groups. Maybe help an old person cross a busy street. There is no such thing as small acts of kindness.
Find a problem that resonates with you. Every contribution makes a significant difference. Your purpose is your importance in the world.
Live as if It’s Your Last, Sometimes
In life, we have to sacrifice and compromise in order to survive. It’s a sad truth, but unless you’re lucky, you have to let go of your passion to make way for something secured. Maybe it’s a job or a college degree or even an apartment that you don’t like. Still, there are days where you should allow yourself to be reminded of what you genuinely enjoy doing.
If today is your last day, what will you do? I’m not saying that you should ruminate on your regrets. But if there are no “ifs” and limitations, do you have an answer to my question? Maybe it’s time that you should enroll in that martial art class you’ve been putting on hold. Perhaps the cheaper ticket for your dream country and the paid vacation leave are the signs you’ve been waiting for to go. And by doing those things, you might come across the purpose or purposes you’ve been seeking for.