To live with purpose isn’t a nice to have.
It isn’t something that you add once everything else has fallen into place. Instead, it’s a necessity and a key ingredient to living a fulfilling and meaningful life.
Living without purpose makes life feel dull and meaningless.
That’s when challenges or obstacles feel overwhelming and unmotivating. That’s when you work your way through checklists and To Do’s, but don’t really know why you’re doing it.
Going from a place of lacking purpose, to experience it in every cell of your body isn’t something that just happens one day. It requires small and consistent shifts, which eventually will add up to a meaningful life.
In this post, I’ll reveal one powerful practice that potentially can change your life.
Living with purpose: shifting from problems to purpose
In life, you’re constantly exposed to problems, struggles, and difficulties. Correct?
Many people live under the illusion that they’re not supposed to have problems. That problems are what is hindering them from living the life they desire. The goal then is to eliminate problems with the hope that one day they’ll end up in a place where everything is…. perfect.
But you’re never going to reach a place where there are no problems or contrasts.
If that place existed, somebody should have found it by now. (Or if you have, give me a call!)
So maybe the problem isn’t the problems, but the way we perceive the problems?
What if problems are the gateway to something better? What if they help us to expand, evolve and create the life we desire? What if their itchy and uncomfortable nature is what is helping us to take action? I mean, if they wouldn’t bother us, we wouldn’t have to do anything about them. Then we’d stay where we are and not evolve, develop and expand.
Problems feel annoying and difficult if their sole purpose is to make your life more difficult. But, they feel empowering and meaningful if you know that they’ll bring you to a better place.
So maybe they don’t show up to put you down – but to help you rise up?
Use your problems as stepping stones
To live with purpose is about getting in touch with why something is done or created. If you clarify why something is created for your benefit, you’ll look at the struggles from an angle of empowerment.
That’s when you bring the power back to where it belongs: with you.
When you actively look for the blessing in disguise in regards to problems, obstacles and past experiences you start looking for a greater purpose. That’s when you stop allowing problems to disempower you – but instead use them for empowerment.
So maybe your money struggles helps you to become a braver, more innovative and grateful person?
Maybe that difficult experience helps you to face and heal past trauma which eventually will increase your quality of life?
Maybe you not fitting in helps you to find strength, confidence, and power in a way that never would have happened otherwise?
Simply, use obstacles for your benefit. See them as guidance on where you need to expand and elevate. Play with ideas on why something is showing up and then figure out reasons that will empower you.
Don’t settle until you’re clear on why this might be happening for you – not to you.
Think like a kid again
Think about kids and how they always ask “why” to everything. They intuitively want to get clear on the purpose of things.
“Why can’t I eat candy for dinner?”
“Why do we need to stop playing now?”
“Why can’t I be a princess or a dragon slayer?”
And honestly, if there’s no great purpose to something, then what’s the point?
Purpose is very much connected to getting clear on your “why”. If you know what you do and how, but not sure why – you most likely won’t feel much sense of a purpose.
Once you’re clear on why you need to complete a task, overcome an obstacle or go through something difficult, you instantly connect to purpose. Look for the purpose behind everything you do. Start with smaller things in your life.
Why should you exercise? So that you can take care of and nurture the one beautiful body you were given.
Why should you clean your dishes? So that you can come home to a clean kitchen and serve meals of clean plates.
Why should you go to work, even though you might not feel like it? So that you can get money and buy food, clothes and pay the bills.
If you can do this with smaller things in life – meaning and purpose will start to add up. If you can’t find a greater why to something, then look for ways to remove that from your life.
Go beyond the shallow to live with purpose
So what’s the practice to start living life with more purpose? As mentioned above, first you gotta start shifting focus when it comes to problems. To actively seek out the blessings in disguise in regards to struggles, challenges, and difficult situations. To perceive problems as your springboard to something better.
Also, figure out your why to everything you do. Be like a kid again who needs a greater purpose before committing to something, or filling your calendar with stuff. Be picky about who you spend time with and what you do with that time. Make sure you do things that take you in the direction you desire long-term.
In short: look for a greater reason in everything you have gone through and everything you are experiencing. Do this on a daily basis and start with smaller things.
Remember, big changes start with small steps in the right direction.
Photo by Ann Danilina