We are all born with unlimited creative potential, resilience, resourcefulness and the capability to fulfill our unique purpose. One of the most meaningful steps you can take towards leading a fulfilled life is identifying your purpose. Understanding what drives you and channelling this inspiration is the key to tapping into your potential. Being able to dial this in while still in your twenties is exponentially more powerful, as you have time on your side to curate your approach. Below is a simple plan for understanding your purpose, with actionable steps you can use to channel your drive and get you on the road to deep fulfillment.
Transform From a “Worker” To a “Purpose” Mindset
The first step in a purposeful journey is to transform from a “Worker” to an individual with a purpose. As Millennials we have an edge over other generations. A shift has already started moving us away from the “Industrial Age Mindset” of being a worker and towards a society that values unique qualities, creativity, and grit.
For generations the “right way” to do things was by tackling a to do list and completing tasks all while fitting in, and continuing to maintain the status quo. This model is built on the values of command (being told what to do),control (being told how to do it) and compliance (always aiming to do it “right”). It left no room for creativity, forward thinking or asking “is there a way I could do this better?”
Adopting a spirit of purposeful play into your life is the way to fully separate yourself from the potential-stifling Industrial Age Mindset. Explore your personal values, keep your big goals at the forefront of your mind and always explore creative ways to achieve your goals. Look at challenges as learning experiences, cultivate creativity and be okay with failure. Aim to “Play Big” in the world, adding maximum value to the lives of others by fully expressing your unique talents and gifts in a way that generates joy, ease and fulfillment to yourself and your community.
Adopting this new mind set requires us to re-think a few big picture paradigms, especially wealth. There are a LOT of feelings out there around wealth. I hope you can move into a place where you see and believe wealth is more than just money. Redefining your views on wealth and recognizing wealth as the accumulation of value is so liberating! Don’t let other people’s definition of wealth define what you are worth. Examples of different kinds of wealth you can accumulate through value include: Knowledge, Talent, Experience, Character, Community, Connection (spiritual), Health, Finance, and Love. If you felt a spark of connection to one of those categories don’t ignore it – this connection might lead you to clarifying values as the next step in defining your purpose.
A value is defined as: “a person’s principles or standards of behavior; one’s judgment of what is important in life.” Values exist, whether you acknowledge them or not. Great potential can arise from acknowledging and channeling values, as they provide a great road map for where our life is going. Differences between values and actions leads to personal conflict, discontent and burn out.
If you aren’t sure what your values are, take a moment to explore these common values on the Core Values Worksheet and see to see if any resonate with you.
Ask Big Questions
Below are examples of some questions a coach might ask you when exploring who you want to become. Answer honestly, and keep a curious mindset. Try to remain free of judgement and don’t focus on trying to give the “best” or “right” answer!
- Who has inspired you in your life? What about them did you draw inspiration from?
- Thinking back on your life – Identify a time when you were at your best. Draw on moments of happiness, pride, joy and feeling fulfilled. What were the biggest contributing factors to these feelings? What environment cultivated these feelings (physical space, people around you)? What makes this particular moment so memorable? What needs and desires were fulfilled?
- What have been the most trying moments in your life? These can include moments when you experienced setbacks, failure, or regrets. What do you wish you had done differently?
- Are there any self-identified boundaries or guidelines that you follow?
- Who do you want to become? What values does this individual have?
Reflection is so important when you are taking time to evaluate and establish your purpose. Based on the above exercises take a moment to sum up where you hope your life will go in 15-20 words. THIS is your purpose.
Let us know in the comments below what you define as your purpose! Do you feel more in control of your life knowing your purpose? Were you surprised about where this exercise took you, or deep down did you always know this is what you were focused on? There are no right or wrong answers here, and I would love to hear what you are all about!