Everyone talks about Mission Statements and “purpose driven lives” like they’re air and water. Not everyone operates that way, especially if they don’t know what they are. Are you on Purpose? — BadWitch
Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…
Dear GWBW — I have a dumb question. I always hear everyone talk about “purpose.” What is that? I mean I know what “on purpose” and the word means, but what’s everyone talking about exactly? Doesn’t everyone have a purpose? Why is it so hard then? — Deliberace
That’s a great question! Purpose is important in living one’s most vital life. Purpose is the energy to life as the right octane fuel is to a car. “Gasoline with too low an octane rating converts fuel to heat rather than power, making for less efficient fuel usage and reduced engine life.” Without the right octane, you have a vehicle that, as finely tuned a driving machine as it might possibly even be, will knock and ping instead of soaring down the road, and may even ruin its vehicle instead of energizing it.
Purpose is meaning. It is the WHY of the WHAT you do and fuels the HOW you do it. If all this is foreign to you, keep looking for your purpose by asking question after question. Good questions are the way to self-discovery and ultimately, sustainable confidence of living true to your self.
A higher octane form of the basic Who am I? or Why am I Here?-type questions might be: “How can I be of assistance?” “How can I give more love to those I want to give it to?” (etc.!) and then proceeds to answer those questions by living in eternal questioning and openness mode to others, is living a life of purpose. Our To Do and (externally) success-oriented culture can sometimes confuse good solid citizens that they may “not have a purpose” when it is more likely a case of asking better life QUESTions. As for “why is it difficult?” – just keep asking questions — all your life long.
Fill ‘er up with high octane purpose,
If you know what “on purpose” means, apply the definition to living your life and you get your answer. Living “on purpose” is living with your heart fully engaged. Some people know from almost their first breath that they want to be a mother, a nurse, a doctor, an astronaut—whatever. That is their purpose. Schooling, career path and extra curricular activities are all focused on moving closer to fulfilling that purpose.
Now, not everyone knows their purpose from the beginning. Remember John Travolta’s character in “Get Shorty”? When asked about why he wants to be involved in the movies when he has a thriving career as a loan shark he says, “Yeah, but I was never that into it.” To have purpose is to be doing work that fulfills you on a soul level. The work is still hard, but somehow you know you are doing what you are suppose to be doing. One way to tell? You get more energy out of doing work on purpose. You get happy, focused and invigorated when you are working at your purpose..
What do you want to do with your life. What activities make you happy, leave you feeling fulfilled and on the right track? Writing? Art? Caretaking? Maybe playing music? Find what makes your heart sing. My guess is you already know. If you are too scared to try, just remember living with regret is really no less scary than trying. Take a class. Take your first steps and do your best. It’s your life.
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