Purpose is what drives us in life. It’s the backbone of our happiness and what gives our lives meaning. But, the things we spend our lives dedicated to have a way of winding down or stopping as we grow old. Our careers end. Our kids grow up and have families of their own. A lot of us start to feel as if our jobs are done and that we don’t have any reason for being here anymore.
While our jobs may be done, a new chapter of life and adventure are just beginning. We dream of vacations, more time to take classes and learn new skills. All those years at work dreaming of a vacation or for more time to take that class or learn that skill… well, this is it. So, what can you do to keep on track and discover a new purpose?
There are 3 simple rules to follow –
#1 – Get out of your head and into your heart!
Dreams come from the heart. We spend so much of our time thinking about the future, responsibilities, what others expect of us, and what we expect of ourselves, that it can paralyze us into inaction. Listening to that inner voice is how you set yourself free. There’s always going to be an excuse or justification for why you should put off to tomorrow what would make you truly happy today. Stop waiting for permission and make the choice. Ask yourself: What do I love? What do I wish I had more time to do? Which dreams have I always denied myself? What does the world need right now? Do I really need a change? What do I really want?
Ron Ackerson asked himself that very same questions after he retired from the oil business. Combining his love of woodworking and his ENORMOUS heart he found a way to bring joy to thousands of children. Click HERE for the full story.
#2 – Don’t think, do!
Happiness is a choice and the best way to predict the future is to create it. You can’t think your way into action. You have to ‘do’ to get the ball rolling. Of course, those first steps are the most unsure, but they are the first steps to whatever adventure and life you choose.
Think back to a time in your life when you were active, busy, and vibrant. Time feels like it flies by as you wonder how it’s time for another birthday already. When you’re moving, the world moves with you. Purpose drives you. When you surround yourself in activities that you love you’ll find others who love them, too. You get absorbed in the energy of it all, you lose yourself to it, and happiness flows along.
#3 – Break the chains that are holding you back!
Self-limiting beliefs and fears can turn us into prisoners in our lives. They’re the whispers that we say to ourselves that people rarely hear. And, when we see others doing the things that scare us the most, we’re so quick to believe that – somehow – those people are different than us, as if we couldn’t.
Do you ever find yourself thinking that you’re too old to do the things your really want, that you can’t or shouldn’t, or what others might think of you if you did? Now, imagine someone else saying those things to you. You might have a few choice words ready if they ever dared. So, why put up with that from yourself? You define your life and purpose, no one else.
Don’t allow the beliefs of anyone, yourself or others, to limit what’s possible for the best years of your life that are coming up. Only you are the one capable of taking those first steps. What will you do with them when you do?
These books were all excellent. If you liked this article, take a look. You might see something you like –
1) Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl. One of the great books in English literature, these WWII memoirs are painful reminder that, even the worst imaginable conditions, we can choose to cope, find meaning, and move forward with a renewed purpose. (Warning: Honest, difficult read of life inside a Nazi death camp… but it’s simply amazing.)
2) Chicken Soup for the Soul: Find Your Happiness by Jack Canfield, Mark Hansen, and Amy Newmark. Part of the very well known book series, it provides 101 inspirational stories about finding your purpose, passion, and joy.
3) The Happiness of Pursuit: Finding the Quest That Will Bring Purpose to Your Life by Chris Guillebeau. A true story of a full of adventure. A good reminder of what might happen when you let go and life.
Have your recently discovered new purpose or perspective? Click HERE to share your story with us.