In my previous post I explained why it’s important to know your purpose. You read more about that here. This week, I want to give you 5 simple ways to help you discover what your purpose is.
For many of us, our purpose doesn’t come to us in an instant. We may go through many chapters in our lives before we discover what it is and that is okay. You don’t need to be born knowing what you’re meant to do with your life.
#1: Identify what your values are.
I like to think of values as our guiding light. When you are living in alignment with what you value, chances are, you’ll be happier and feel a deep sense of peace. Your purpose will often be aligned with what you value.
For example, if you value community, you may discover that your purpose is linked to helping others connect or feel like they belong. It’s important to note that our values are dynamic and may change overtime. For example, in your 20’s, you may long for adventure and freedom. Contrast that with your 30’s when you’re longing for security and family. As your values change, so may your purpose.
Once you’ve identified what your top 10 (5 or 3) values are, look at your life. Are you doing activities, fostering relationships or pursuing a career that is aligned with these? If not, why? You don’t need to change everything overnight because drastic change isn’t sustainable, however, it may be worthwhile identifying any areas for improvement.
#2 Give yourself space to think.
If the answer doesn’t come to you right away – don’t force it. Give yourself some thinking space and allow your subconscious mind to contemplate it. If you’ve ever experienced an epiphany or an ‘a-ha’ moment, you may feel like the answer just comes to you in an instant. While it feels that way, it is a result of giving yourself space to think.
So, how do we do this? Block out the white noise. Rather than being busy all the time, take a break. Allow yourself to be bored or for your mind to be still. Some ideas include: meditating, going for a walk or run (without the headphones or any noise to distract you from your thoughts).
#3 Try new things.
Our brains crave novelty and when we try new things, we get to see whether it’s something we enjoy or not. It’s easy to say ‘I don’t like it’ but how do you know unless you give it a chance? I’ll use Julia Child as an example. It wasn’t until Julia moved to France that she discovered her passion for cooking. This passion led her to train at Le Cordon Bleu and pursue a career in the food industry. Our purpose may be linked to something we haven’t even tried yet – how amazing is that?!
#4 Read non fiction books.
Books are an incredible resource to use. If you’re wanting to see what strategies others have used to find their purpose (either consciously or by accident), you may want to do some reading.
Some books I personally recommend (and have read myself) are:
Start with Why – Simon Sinek | Purpose – Lisa Messenger | Make Your Mark – Maggie Warrell | Purpose – Jessice Huie
#5 Invest time in your passion projects.
When we spend time doing things that make us feel good, we vibrate on a different energy frequency. When we are feeling good, we are more creative and open to ideas flowing to us.
Think about how you spend your free time. Do you cook, paint, make, manufacture, read, write or play? The things we do that we aren’t paid for sometimes lead us to our purpose or a career pathway we didn’t know existed.
The takeaway? The more we know ourselves, the more likely we are to discover our purpose.