How to Discover Your Life Purpose

Do you believe that you have a life purpose or destiny? If so, how can you best fulfill it? And how do you know if you are moving towards it or away from it? What you should realize is that any life purpose you have is not something decided for you by someone else, even by God or the universe. It is something that you find and create for yourself. So the way you know if you are moving towards or away from it is very simple -you will know by how various activities make you feel.

Finding your life purpose is really finding what your are most passionate about, and what makes you feel most alive and like you are living up to your potential. This can be almost anything, and it varies widely from one person to another. To one person, for example, having a farm and getting up before dawn to care for animals is their life’s dream, while working in an office all day, say as a lawyer, would be pure drudgery. To someone else, the exact opposite is true. It’s all a question of “following your bliss,” as Joseph Campbell put it.

If you feel that you are doing things that are not connected to your true purpose, it’s time to pay attention to what you really enjoy. Some people assume that what is fun for them is simply trivial, and that they could not possibly make a living from it. This is very seldom the case, especially today, when people make money creating computer games, writing fantasy novels, baking desserts, playing music and so forth.

The important thing is not that you make money at doing what you love, but that you make time to do it. Another well known saying (not sure who said this first), “Do what you love, the money will follow.” If you think about it, however, even if you never make a lot of money from something, if you truly feel passionate about it, it is worth pursuing. And if you truly follow through on what you love and are determined to make it a larger and larger part of your life, there will certainly be a way to make it a livelihood.

You have to start somewhere. Take a class in something you are really interested in. Read books on the subject. Join online discussion forums. See if you can join a local group in your area on the subject. If none exists, start one. Preferably find time every day, if only a few minutes, to devote some time to your passion, whether it’s drawing in a sketchbook, writing a poem, cooking, playing a sport or learning a musical instrument.

Now even when you are truly following your life’s purpose, you will not find every detail in the pursuit fascinating. There are usually certain parts of anything that you may find boring or tedious. The difference between this and an activity that is not at all in alignment with your life’s purpose is in how you imagine the outcome. If, for example, you very much want to learn to play the piano, you will find the idea of being an accomplished pianist very exciting, even if you sometimes tire of practicing the same notes over and over again.

On the other hand, let’s say you have a job as a cashier and you really don’t like it very much. You may find that there is no future possibility involving operating a cash register that excites you. So this is, most likely, not your life’s purpose. Yet if you find time to practice the piano every night after working at the cash register, you can use that to make the “boring” activity more tolerable. If you make it a point to identify your life’s passions (usually there is more than one!) and making time to pursue them, you will gradually start to see everything you do as being of service to your greater purpose.

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