Are you a prodigy or a savant? Me neither.
That means your life doesn’t have to have one single purpose, and you don’t have to discover it or have it revealed to you.
It’s easy to fall into existential angst thinking about the meaning of life. Why am I here? What’s my purpose?
I’ve known people to get stuck and refuse to take on new opportunities because they were waiting to figure out their grand purpose before making any decisions.
Books and seminars on success tell you you need to know your purpose if you’re really going to build the life of your dreams.
I’ve done it myself.
Most of us wear a lot of hats.
Student, Business Owner, Parent, Spouse, Writer on Thrive Global, to name only a few.
I have a different purpose for each hat I wear.
My purpose as a parent or as a spouse isn’t the same as my purpose as a business owner.
Each segment of my life can have a mini-purpose.
My purpose as a writer is to share knowledge and expertise I’ve developed over decades to help improve the lives of others. Hopefully in a way that makes people feel good.
My purpose as a business owner is to make decisions that move the business toward gradual growth while receiving a fair compensation for the work I do.
The more your mini-purposes can interconnect and support each other, the more harmony and satisfaction you’re going to have in your life.
Ideally the many mini-purposes compliment each other.
If you find a conflict, find a way to make them meet. Find a way to feed one without excluding the other.
I had to do this when I worked while my children were still young.
When you hold up each opportunity and decision to your mini-purpose, it’s like having a meter that gives you an answer.
I get easily distracted by things that sound exciting. I want to say yes to them all!
I can ask myself,
“Does this serve the purpose of why I write?” or “Does this serve the purpose of who I want to be as a parent?”
The answer is going to be yes or no.
Say yes to things that support your purpose.
Say no to things that don’t align with your purpose. They’re only going to lead to frustration and derail your goals.
Do you see how you can remain grounded and certain in your choices because you made your decisions based on whether or not they supported your purpose?
The things that motivate me today are different from what motivated me years ago.
When my kids were young, I chose to weigh my purpose as a parent more heavily than my purpose as a business owner.
My life looks completely different today, and my purposes have kept up with the changes.
The key is to get clear on the purposes that support the different pillars in your life.
The pillars shift over time, so occasionally examine your purposes and see if you want to modify them.
Don’t fall into the trap of thinking your purpose has to be a certain thing because it’s what’s expected of you.
Society, religion, family traditions and expectations…they all heavily influence what we think we have to do and how we think we need to act.
It just doesn’t add up if you’re trying to live up to a purpose that belongs to someone else. There’s no flow.
Success depends on you getting honest and clear on who you are and why you do what you do in each of the areas of your life.
When you know the purpose behind what you do, and your actions align with this purpose, you’re unstoppable.
Work is inspired and invigorating.
You have more inner peace because you aren’t trying to operate in a state of conflict.
You’re confident and not easily swayed because you got where you are with certainty.
What is my purpose for…?
Ask this question for each segment of you life.
Pause before you act.
Ask yourself if your next step is going to take you closer to your purpose or move you farther from it.
Let that be your guide.
As always, I wish you all the best!
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Visit me at www.christinebradstreet.com
Originally published at medium.com