Years ago, I found my life spiraling out of control. I was unhappy, unbalanced and unfulfilled. Internally I was in a great battle but I could not understand exactly what was going on at the time. When I had the courage to be alone and find my center, I discovered that I had all the symptoms of a person living without a true sense of purpose. I had heard lots of talk about living a life of purpose and fulfilling your destiny. However, I was having a difficult time processing that truth. What I discovered during that season of my life radically changed me and shifted how I live. Right now I want to share a few key lessons with you about how I learned to live life on purpose.
You must live with intention. This has become such a buzz word in our culture today. However, I am not sure that many people really understand what this word means. Intention is not just a cute phrase that we throw around to sound spiritual or powerful. Intention is a way of life that you must embrace if you want to fulfill your purpose. Living with intention is living with clear perspective and priorities. In other words, to live intentionally is to understand that the fruit of your life is determined by your focus. I discovered this powerful truth many years ago and it transformed my life. At the time, I set an intention to always go above and beyond the basic requirements. I was determined to be a person of excellence in everything that I did. That intention defined by habits, established my disciplines and has earned me respect all around the world. For more than twenty years, I have made it my duty to not live a single day of my life without intention. It is great to set goals and create plans. However, if you do not add intention to your life you will not be successful. Intention is the impetus behind the goals we set and the plans we construct. Intention is what gives life and meaning to the dreams that are in our hearts. Honestly, we rarely accomplish what we plan to do. On the other hand, we always accomplish what we attach intention to.
If you do not set the direction for your life distractions will set the direction for you. I learned very early in life that an idle life is an ineffective life. You cannot just waste moments. You must understand that disguised in moments are opportunities. When you fail to seize a moment you ultimately squander opportunities in your life. My eager desire to learn, investigate and pontificate were great blessings. My inquisitive nature provoked me to not just sit back and allow life to pass me by. Instead, I discovered that I must determine the direction of my life. If I do not determine my direction, distractions will steal my time, rob me of effectiveness and squander my opportunities. If you cannot manage moments you will never master your life. Defeat is the product of a life lived with the absence of direction. You will have many opportunities to be pulled in life. However, purpose will always point the way to maximizing your greatest potential. You must set your sail and refuse to let anything separate you from a life of success and prosperity.
When you know the direction your life should take, it safeguards you from the dangers of drifting. One thing I have learned over the years is that distractions can be deadly. In fact, I often say that distractions are what cause us to drift from the center of our assignments. Drifting can seem harmless in the beginning. However, the farther you get away from the shore, the more time you waste and opportunities you squander. When I really learned the power of destiny, I realized that I cannot afford to drift. Living on purpose is living in the center of your assignment. When you know the course you cannot afford to allow anything to break your concentration. Purpose essentially sets the perimeters of your life. Your purpose determines your boundaries. Your boundaries ultimately define who you become. Therefore, you must develop singleness of thought in everything that you do. What may seem like a slight deviation today can ultimately sabotage your destiny. You have to protect your path from everything that would interrupt your progress.
You have to evaluate your journey. As someone that has had the privilege of empowering people all around the world, I have discovered a secret to success. One thing you will learn about me is that I believe greatly in the power of self-reflection and self-evaluation. Evaluation is critical to the emergence of your greatest self. You must take time constantly to evaluate your journey. Evaluation is not to create discouragement or hopelessness. However, evaluation is to measure maturity and momentum in pursuit of your purpose. If you are not advancing, you have to stop and assess where you are. Many people hope for a better life. However, you have to ponder the path of your life. The path will be challenging and it will stretch you. The ultimate goal is for you to arrive at the place of destiny. Every stretching in my life has produced great strides. Evaluation is the only way you will ever reach your destiny.
Originally published at medium.com