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How to Find Your Life Purpose

Have you ever wondered how to find your LIFE PURPOSE? Here are 7 ways to discover your life purpose and how to begin living your purpose today.

Have you ever wondered how to find your LIFE PURPOSE? I think it’s common to wonder why we are living and what we are supposed to be doing while we’re kicking around on earth. You might even wonder if you are wasting time because you don’t know what your purpose is.

In my search to find my life purpose, I became frustrated because it seemed the answer to what my life purpose was, always eluded me.

Yet, eventually I did discover my purpose and even better, I discovered that I have live my life purpose in anything I do!

The benefit of knowing your life purpose and then living your life with purpose is that you begin to make deliberate choices that bring joy, substance, and abundance to your life.

Living life on purpose and with purpose gives me more satisfaction than chasing happiness ever did.

Through living my life on purpose; I discovered more about my unique contribution to this world and I became confident in carrying it out.

For YEARS, I used to do assessments, and read books trying to figure out what my Life Purpose, was. Yet, I never could figure out what it was.

It was frustrating and I spent way too many years anxious that I was doing everything wrong!

However, all those years exploring gave me a great foundation in living out my purpose. And if I could have had some inkling that my curiosity and willingness to explore and learn was absolutely part of my purpose, perhaps I could have enjoyed the experience more.

Instead, I often felt ashamed that I spent so much time reading and chasing after new ideas.

I want to show you how you can figure out your life purpose and begin living your own life on purpose and with purpose.

How I Discovered My Life Purpose

Eventually, I began to accept that this curiosity about life and ideas and people was how I was wired. I accepted that I was happiest when I was sharing these ideas with people.

Then final piece was I quit hiding who I really was and began living my life aligned with my own values.

When I began living my life with purpose, the game changed. I realized that you don’t have to know anything in advance. It’s by living and doing that you discover your purpose in life.

Don’t freak out if you don’t know your Purpose with a capital P. We’re talking about living your life on purpose—living deliberately—and living a life aligned with your values.

You simply have to begin moving in a direction that is aligned with your own unique values and this will lead to the discovery of your own purpose.

Have you ever wondered how to find your LIFE PURPOSE? Here are 7 ways to discover your life purpose and how to begin living your purpose today.

Easy-peasy, right?

How to live life on purpose is a challenge we all face throughout our lives. Being on-track and on-purpose leads to a deeply satisfying, full, and productive life.

Living life ON purpose and WITH purpose gives me more satisfaction than chasing happiness.

I’ve come up with 7 strategies to help you find your life purpose and the things that may feel like obstacles at first.

How to Find Your Life Purpose

To find your life purpose, you must align your life with your values rather than what you think your values should be or what other people think they should be. You have to live deliberately.

We all have some kind of internal alert system that lets us know when we are living on purpose and when we’re not. Typically, when we’re off-track we know we’re off track.

I have never done anything that turns out to be a mistake that I don’t have at least a little feeling that maybe what I’m about to do isn’t such a good idea.

The reverse is true as well. When we begin to act on purpose, we can feel positive feelings. Yet, there are things that come up, that can kind of trick us into believing that perhaps, we aren’t on the right path.

Yet, as you’ll read, these are all normal parts of living life in a way that teaches you how to find your life purpose. Once you are aware of them, you won’t be as tempted to give up something too early.

If you want to learn how to find your life purpose; you have to be willing to first live your life on purpose.

7 Strategies to Live Your Life on Purpose

Understand the Timing of Your Purpose

We do something that feels on-track and on-purpose but it’s taking longer than we think it should.

This is probably one of the biggest reasons people begin to doubt they are on-track. They take action and then they feel it should not take as long as it is taking.

We often overestimate how quickly we can achieve something and when we don’t do it in that amount of time, we call the experience a failure and give up on it.

We look at others and their timelines and make comparisons that ultimately do us harm.

Strategy to Deal with Time

Our timing is unique to us. Often, we quit before we have made the shift, where what we are attempting solidifies or takes form. Many things feel like failure…until they don’t anymore. That shift can take place in an instant. Sometimes almost without warning.

Look for signs that things are “warming up.” Remember that game from childhood?

You’d look for something and another person would give you clue about whether you were warm or not. This time, you have to feel the clues of whether something is getting warmer or cooler.

Go in the direction of warmer. It may be subtle but look and feel for it.

Understand the Difficulty About Your Life Purpose

There’s something you want to do that feels on-purpose but it’s harder than you thought it would be.

Have you ever tried to learn something and then discovered that it was MUCH harder than you had imagined and you quit? I’m totally guilty of that. I tried to learn dancing a couple of years ago. I quit after two lessons.

Recently, I tried to learn some new technology and it was much harder than I thought it would be. I wanted to give up.

But I couldn’t because someone was counting on me to learn it and to be able to provide a service. I stuck with it and almost magically, after a few weeks, I knew how to use the technology.

This encouraged me to try another new thing and the same thing happened.

Strategy to Deal with Difficulty

Now I know, that for me, learning that at first appears difficult or even impossible can often be learned with perseverance and a belief and intent that it can be learned.

Set the intent, that you can and will learn or accomplish what you need to do and that you will stick with it until you do. Take a short break if you need to clear your mind.

I am amazed at the difference that setting the intent to learn something and not quitting until I do, makes.

Sometimes something I’ve struggled with for weeks will suddenly become clear very quickly after declaring my commitment to myself.

How Other People Respond to Our Life Purpose

We’re social creatures. We care about what people think, like our life depends upon it. And our life did depend upon it when we were kids.

Now that we’re grown-ups, we can still feel overly concerned with how others perceive what we’re doing.

Maybe we’ll look silly? Maybe we’ll look dumb? I do struggle with this. I want to look cool and in control all the time even though I know that’s not even possible.

Not only is it not possible, it’s not even a good thing to try for. Being vulnerable and acting with purpose is where movement and growth happen.

When we keep our environment and the reactions of others too controlled and comfortable, we stagnate.

We might stay more comfortable in some ways, but ultimately it is not for our best.

Strategy to Deal with Other People

Keep in mind that most people are way less concerned with what you are doing than you think. In addition, most people will take their attitude from you.

If you feel ambivalent, they will pick up on that and reflect that back. If you radiate confidence in yourself, they will reflect that back. Eventually. You ultimately set the tone for how people perceive you. 

The Importance of Our Tribes

We belong to many tribes: our families, our friendship circles, our work, our churches, and our communities.

There are times when choosing to live your life according to your own values will move you out of a tribe. This can be your choice and sometimes it is not.

If you have to sidestep your own values to belong to a certain tribe, you have to seriously question whether that tribe is best for you.

If you have to sidestep your own values to belong to a certain tribe; seriously question if that tribe is best for you.

On a happier note, sometimes your tribe will surprise you with acceptance.

On-Purpose Strategy to Deal with Our Tribes

The groups we are aligned with can change over time. Sometimes we outgrow a particular group or tribe. It happens. Accept that for each loss; you will have an expansion into another group that is more aligned with your purpose.

How Happiness Figures Into Our Life Purpose

To chase happiness as a 24/7 way of life doesn’t quite lead to happiness. But living your life with purpose and on purpose leads to a feeling that might just be better than happiness.

However, sometimes living your life aligned with your values and purpose leads to very uncomfortable and very NOT-happy feelings. This can happen especially at the beginning of new ventures and experiences.

There is no guarantee, that if you genuinely believe that you are acting inline with your values and with purpose, that life will turn out all roses and happiness. Yet, I can tell you that there are feelings that are better than that.

Strategy to Deal with Happiness

Happiness can be fleeting and attempting to hold too tight to that particular feeling can make it impossible to achieve. Enjoy and savor happy moments for sure. But learn to relish and value the feeling of living on purpose.

Let Go of Earlier Purposes

I believe that our purpose in life evolves over the years. We might have one purpose at 20 and a totally different one at 40.

In my twenties, I was busy being the best mom I could be as well as going to graduate school, and volunteering in my church and community.

My life evolved and what had been the driving purpose of my younger years, no longer fit after my children were grown. It’s important to give yourself permission to grow and change over time.

In fact, it’s one of the most life-giving things you can do! To know that no matter what age you turn on a birthday, you are still going to be starting and learning new things is an amazing outlook on a purpose-driven life!

Strategy to Deal With Earlier Life Purposes

Accept that your purpose and values will change over time. Be willing to explore this at your own speed. You do not need to abandon old purposes all at once and can gradually discover and lean into new ways you want to live on purpose. 

When We Don’t Know Other People with Similar Life Purposes

I have beautiful friendships and strong family connections. But I don’t know a single person who is living like me with the same kinds of values and purpose.

It’s scary to be living off the narrow track that was laid out before me when I was a kid.

Strategy to Deal with Not Having a Guide

Perhaps this is the BEST sign that you are living your life on-purpose. We are all so unique that it amazes me how we attempt to fit ourselves into boxes that we think will match up with everyone else’s.

When your life is different than those around you, you have definitely stepped out of the box!

Start Finding Your Life Purpose

Start with baby steps and go as slow as you need. Remember that living on-purpose and with purpose is not about knowing what your “Purpose” is. It is about aligning with your values and what is right for you.

We often try to bend and shape ourselves in ways to please other people or our culture in general. Or we follow outdated ways of living in an attempt to hold onto something that worked for us before.

Or we are convinced that there is NO way we could possibly be happy if we choose to do what deep inside, we know is right for us.

Yes, it does take a certain amount of bravery to live your unique and on-purpose life. An on-purpose life can be uncomfortable at times, especially during some of the transitions. The reward is that you get that feeling, that is unlike any other feeling, that feeling of truly living your life on-purpose.

You do learn how to find your life purpose and that makes a life feel like it is truly worth living.

Keep showing up my friend!

Love, Sara

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Sara

Sara

Hi, I'm Sara! As a counselor and college advisor/coach, I've helped thousands of people make positive changes in their lives. Join me on the adventure of thinking big and living well!

6 Comments

  1. Shannon on September 9, 2016 at 9:33 am

    All such great points! I try to constantly remind myself that people are not near as concerned with what im doing, how I look, etc. as I think they are… I think if we focus TOO much on the idea of happiness too, it eludes us..

  2. Jennifer Coleman on September 8, 2016 at 4:30 pm

    Really love this! It is so important to be mindful and to assume personal responsibility for your life….to live life on purpose! Love that you are getting the message out there, and combining it with strategies we can all implement!

    • Sara on September 10, 2016 at 10:51 am

      Thanks Jennifer. It’s definitely an ongoing process!

  3. DebP on September 8, 2016 at 2:48 pm

    Love the way you’ve broken down the problem and followed-up with a purposeful statement! Great post.

  4. Blossom Onunekwu on September 7, 2016 at 5:01 pm

    “If you have to sidestep your own values to belong to a certain tribe,: you have to seriously question whether that tribe is best for you”

    Amen, sista! I wanted to tweet that, but it was too long. I wholeheartedly agree with everything discussed. There is a reason we all are here, and each day we should strive to find that reason.

    • Sara on September 7, 2016 at 9:57 pm

      I appreciate the feedback! I made a click-to-tweet a little shorter so it would work.

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Sara | MyThinkBigLife.com

Hi, I'm Sara and I'm so happy you're here! My Think Big Life began shortly after I turned 50. Big changes can happen with a small start, an adjustment of thought, or a simple process. Over time, you transform your life into the one you always dreamed of having.

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