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Discovering your purpose is a process

Discovering your purpose is a process

Getting clear about your purpose means relating with the sources of meaning, joy, and inspiration that exist within you. Defining your purpose is the work of being truly aware of what you love and what is most alive within you and then acting accordingly.

This process (sometimes beautiful, sometimes painful) takes time, practice, imagination, compassion, curiosity, and awareness.

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The qualities that lead to a strong sense of purpose are awareness, values, aspirations, and congruent behaviors.

To activate them, the process looks like this: use awareness to connect with what’s alive within you; intention, to visualize your best life; alignment, to match your actions with your values; and resilience, to unhook from rigidity.

Awareness simply means paying attention to the experience you are having as you are having it.

You can practice awareness of your own sense of purpose simply by taking the time to acknowledge the thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations that appear when you consider your life and what purpose means to you.

Intention is your inherent ability channel your energy and effort at will. It seems simple enough, but it takes a lot of practice to harness your innate ability to direct your attention at will. It takes practice and is a critical skill for the journey toward realizing your purpose.

Setting the intention to live with purpose meansdepicting an ideal future, and then living and working toward the realization of that vision.

Even recognizing the fact that you may not be aligned with your values is the starting point on the path to full alignment with your purpose.

Acting in a way that aligns with our values can be difficult, because we easily lose sight of what’s most important to us when we get tangled in the different scenarios of everyday life.

Resilience is the cultivated ability to bounce back from adversity, adapt, and thrive.

Developing resilience is critically important to realizing your purpose because it allows you navigate the challenges you will certainly meet along the way. The good news is that resilience is highly trainable.

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Mindful Workout
  • Be clear about your aim. Bring purpose to your activity by consciously envisioning how you want your guide your session. 
  • Warm-up (5 minutes). 
  • Settle into a rhythm (10 to 15 minutes). 
  • Challenge yourself (10 to 15 minutes). Try faster speed, more repetitions, or heavier weights, depending on what you are doing. 
  • Cool down (5 minutes).
  • Rest (5 minutes). 

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IDEAS

When you talk with someone in person, notice the posture and body language of the other person. Focus on the tone in their voice. Consider the meaning of their words.

The ability to monitor one's own and others' feelings and emotions to discriminate among them and to use this information to guide one's thinking and actions. -Salovey and Mayer (1990)