Before you take step one on the quest for purpose ask yourself a question. Is it all worthwhile?
I hope the first two posts in this series have convinced you of that. The next step is to figure out what exactly your purpose in life is. It’s a pretty big question, isn’t it?
It would be swell if I had a spot on answer for you, but the truth is that our life’s purpose is different for everyone. There is no quiz you can take that spits out the answer. It’s something you have to discover for yourself.
But I do have a few thoughts to share with you that will guide you along the way. In the end, your purpose is very much like true love. You’ll know it when you’ve found it.
What Are You Passionate About?
Start by thinking about all the different things you are passionate about. It doesn’t matter if it’s part of your current work or career, a cause, a hobby, or anything else you can think of.
Make a list and keep adding to it as you come across more ideas. Maybe it’s restoring old cars, redecorating your home, or sewing historical costumes.
What Do You Value?
One good approach to finding purpose is examining your values. What’s important to you? What do you feel would make a difference?
Do you value the right of every child to grow up in a happy home? Then you might make it your life’s purpose to raise foster kids or adopt. Do you value animal rights? You could make it your mission to raise awareness about the plight of wild giraffes in Africa.
What Elicits A Strong Emotional Response?
Think in superlatives. What makes you the happiest, the angriest, or the saddest? Strong emotion is a good sign that you’re very passionate about something.
It’s an indicator that a particular cause or purpose is important to you. It might be a passion for playing the piano. Or your passion for heirloom tomato gardening. Or your burning desire to put a stop to human trafficking.
Last but not least, think about what you enjoy doing. There’s nothing wrong with finding a purpose that is also enjoyable.
In fact, it’s important that you like what you do and are having fun doing it. If it isn’t fun, it’s much harder to put in the work and effort required to reach your goals.
Of course, not every task and every aspect of what you do will be fun. For the most part, you want to find a purpose and a project that has you excited to jump out of bed in the morning.
“The purpose of human life is to serve, and to show compassion and the will to help others.”
~ Albert Schweitzer