What is my purpose? Why am I here? If I just knew the answer to those universal questions, maybe I’d know what to do next.
I’ve reached this point in my life where the end seems near, but I know I’m not done yet. I have another game to play. Another chance to step to the plate and park one over the left field fence.When I die and face St. Peter at the Pearly Gates, what if he says “Nice try. You did play hard, but you always played it safe. You hit a single when you could’ve pounded one into the left field bleachers. You didn’t make an out, that’s for sure, but you also didn’t make a difference.”
And I ask, “What do you mean?”
“The game was lost. You’re single just wasn’t enough.”
“I didn’t know I was supposed to reach for the seats. I didn’t know it was my job. I didn’t know that my purpose was. I thought I was just a player. It was someone else’s job to win the game. Someone else’s job to be a hero.What if I’d hit a home run and won the game? Would it have changed the life of one or even many? I just didn’t know. I just didn’t know.”
That’s how I feel sometimes. Maybe you do too. Why am I here and what part am I supposed to play? What can we do to find our purpose? I read an article by Mei Mei Fox about an interesting approach that may help us get started. She suggested creating a vision board.
On a wall or a poster board, if you can’t use pins or tape on your wall, we’ll create this vision board. Out of a 3×5 card cut out the word purpose. Put this cut out in the middle of your wall.
Now, over the next few days or weeks, cut out pictures of things that excite you, ignite you or make you happy. Put these on your wall around your purpose. As your Vision Board fills up, take time to look at the pictures. Is there a trend to the images? If so, maybe you should explore what it’s trying to tell you. Then, is what you’re passionate about the key to your purpose? Maybe not the only key, but at least a place to start exploring.
Is this really why we’re here, just to find out what we are passionate about? Somehow I don’t think so. Let’s look at it another way. Our life on Earth could be defined in 3 simple ways.
First: Our life has a positive impact on the world.
Second: Our life has a negative impact on the world.
Third: Our life has no impact at all.
Which path do you choose? Most people would probably choose the first option. Now that was easy, wasn’t it? Now that you’ve decided on at least one of your goals in your life’s purpose, how do you make it happen?
Since that you have chosen to have an impact, the next step is to uncover the tools you already possess that could fashion this impact. What if we make another board? This will be the things we’re good at. Our abilities. Cut out pictures that represent your skills and talents. Place them on the second board around the word skills. Include all the things you do well. This could be based on the quality of what you built or created or maybe even what others said about your creations. “Wow, you have a future as an artist. That painting is beautiful.”
This is a good time to go back and look at your first vision board. You put those pictures there for a reason. They must have created a feeling. Now’s the time to explore that feeling. Find the picture that reminds you of something you would enjoy doing for someone or with someone.Now look at your skills board. Match the skill with the activity that you could do for someone else. Where does the joyful activity and the talent intersect? Where they align is a great activity to share with others and make their life better.
There’s another way to look at purpose. The journey is the purpose. Let’s talk about that trip to find our purpose.It starts with a jouney. The road will be bumpy and sometimes narrow. Sometimes it will be exhilarating, but often exasperating. Howver, with open minds, we will see, hear and feel life at every turn.
This journey is not made to be taken alone. You will assemble a team of friends, acquaintances, family. Your allies.Each will teach you something, for each has their own passions, joys and talents. You may be surprised that the one you least expect ends up supplying the knowledge you most require just to survive the trip.You will grow with each step and often grow the most from the challenges you face and the adversity you overcome. Along the way you will chisel the stone to form what the journey has shown you as your purpose.
You will return from your journey with some scars and bruises but with the wisdom to truly make a difference. A chance to give back. A chance to make a positive impact.
Your purpose will absorb you. It will free you. It will challenge you.
Now it’s up to you. GO MAKE SOMETHING HAPPEN.