I was a lot like many other people – I had to hit rock bottom before starting to swim upwards. My life was a mess. I didn’t really feel a sense of “purpose,” a higher reason for my existence. This is why I just drifted. I entered one toxic relationship after another. I was stuck in the same disastrous job for years. Finally, after a quarrel with my boss and experiencing the complete humiliation of being told that I am worthless, I snapped out of it.
To put it simply, I woke up.
I realized that I don’t need to be stuck in a job that fails providing fulfillment. I don’t have to put up with a meaningless relationship because I fear being alone. Suddenly, I realized that my life was worth a whole lot more and I deserved to do something meaningful, something that would make me feel fulfilled.
After quitting my job and starting to pursue my passions, I also found myself capable of building much more meaningful relationships and bonds with others. Today, I can proudly say that my life is happening in a way that I envisioned in my early years. The daydream has become a reality.
You don’t have to reach the bottom in order to find your life’s purpose. You’ll simply need to take a bit of time to reflect on what you’re doing right now, how it makes you feel and whether you’re destined for something greater and more exciting.
Ask Yourself the Right Questions
Answering a few very simple questions will give you a better idea about how you’re living right now and what’s in store for you in the future. These questions include the following:
- What makes you happy? What gives you the motivation to keep on going when things get hard?
- Which past moments made you feel happiest and most fulfilled?
- Who inspires you the most? What do they do?
- What natural talents do you have? Have you ever pursued those?
- What’s your biggest regret?
- What would be saddest about when you grow old? Which opportunity is the one that you don’t want to miss?
Do you see a pattern emerging? Unfortunately, many of us are occupied with the things that don’t matter. We accept the routine because it’s comfortable or because these are the things that society expects of us.
Letting go of the routine is probably the hardest thing you’ll ever have to do. Once you identify the thing that you are to be occupied with and once you let go of the fear, you’ll experience the biggest relief in your life. I promise!
Rely on the Right People
Very few people manage to find their life’s purpose without a bit of assistance. Meaningful relationships and surrounding yourself with the right people will be of paramount importance for stepping out of your comfort zone and pursuing the unknown.
Mentors, loved ones and people that share similar passions in life can help you identify the right path.
Every person has a unique journey. Still, learning from the experiences of others and getting inspired by their accomplishments will teach you valuable lessons. You simply have to be open and observant.
A friend, a loved one, a teacher or even a person that you meet at the grocery store can turn your life around. Don’t dismiss such encounters as meaningless. Learn from the experiences of others and apply the lessons to your own life.
Go Out There and “Just do It”
I know I’m using a popular slogan developed by one of the world’s biggest athletic brands. Still, the simple saying can be applied to nearly every aspect of life.
You can’t find your life’s purpose by simply sitting at home and waiting for something to happen. Adopt a proactive approach.
Go out there, try different things and get into situations that make you feel uncomfortable. Some of the things you can attempt doing include:
- Travel – it’s possible to go far on a limited budget
- Learn a new skill
- Do something extreme (skydiving is just one of the possibilities)
- Go up to someone interesting and introduce yourself
- Teach somebody else something that you’re good at
- Join a group of people that share passions similar to yours
- Become a volunteer for a good cause
- Read and educate yourself
All of these will teach you how to stay open and embrace the new opportunities that come your way. The more you’re interested in trying out new things, the easier it will be to identify the ones that give you deep satisfaction.
Give Up on the Quest for Perfection
Many people are incapable of identifying their life’s purpose because they’re waiting for the big “a-ha” moment. I was one of these people and I settled for a mediocre existence because I couldn’t find anything grand, anything that would make me scream “Eureka!”
Your life’s purpose could be something simple. Once you identify that one thing, however, you’ll start feeling like nothing is missing from your life anymore. This sense of completion is the one that we all yearn. By waiting for something exceptional to happen, however, we’re setting ourselves up for failure.
There’s no need to travel to Africa and volunteer, find the cure for a disease or lead a completely selfless existence to make your life meaningful. Let go of the expectations. Take a deeper look inside yourself. If you feel good, you know that you’re doing the right thing and you’re surrounded by the right people, chances are that you’ve identified the purpose.
What I’m trying to say is that you’ll simply have to let go of the fear of the unknown.