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Vision, mission, purpose, goals, beliefs, values, habits, principles etc. etc….brain explosion! These terms are rushed over so often in the personal development world and even moreso in the corporate world; used, misconstrued and confused until they lose their meaning and become cliches.
As we’ve talked about before on this blog, “all models are wrong”, however applying a “useful” understanding to these terms can help us gain extra clarity on our life and where we’re headed. So, based on my 6 or so years’ experience in personal development (and much longer in professional development), and absorbing various interpretations of these words, here is my take:
This week I want to focus on our Purpose. I’ll cover some of the other terms in the weeks to come.
What am I supposed to do with my life?
Is there one job where I could be both happy, make a difference and be wealthy?
What is my purpose?
If we choose to believe that our lives are more than just a random and chaotic interplay of atoms and molecules colliding, then questions like these can tend to keep us up at night! I believe that we struggle with finding our elusive “purpose” because we are often searching for the one thing that truly fulfils us, motivates us and brings us happiness. But purpose isn’t something to find once, set and forget, to live happily ever after. If we are open to it, the journey of discovering our purpose throughout our life is a constantly unfolding one.
I believe that we are inherently born as unique and complete individuals with infinite potential.
Our purpose is something we are born with; something we’ve always had but are not necessarily conscious of. There isn’t just one thing that we are born to do, but rather an infinite number of ways to explore and discover the things that align with our true and unique identity! It is always possible to find an even higher purpose and to feel even more closely aligned to our true self.
In his famous TED talk, Simon Sinek shares a concept called ‘The Golden Circle’:
He argues that great businesses and leaders deeply connect with others, not because of what they do, but because of why they do it. Our purpose is our why; it is a connection to our core identity and our avenue for connecting with others.
There is no need to “find” our purpose because it hasn’t been lost! In some way, right now, we are already living our purpose. The challenge, as we become more self-aware, is to gain greater clarity around which actions resonate most with our purpose, and then find ways to shape our life to live more closely aligned to this. Often, it’s not so much about doing more to be on purpose but about doing less of what is not congruent with who we are.
Purpose is not a plan but a path. This pathway is our journey of growth in life, and I see the key being in just starting somewhere. Wherever you are right now you’ve already started and you’re on the path. Keep going, with your eyes wide open!
Christian is the founder of Be Awesome and is uncovering his purpose through trial and error every day. He is passionate about sharing the best of what he has learnt to allow others to experience more freedom and greater quality of choice in their life.
Since taking the “red pill” in 2010 and departing from a traditional career as an architect, Christian has explored a weird and wonderful career path involving teaching, community engagement and cultural management. He uses design thinking to help individuals and organisations act more creatively and gets excited about the opportunities that arise through travel, collaboration, chance encounters and new relationships formed across a range of creative fields. To work or play with Christian contact him here.