Finding your life purpose is a journey that involves reflecting on the person that you are.
Perhaps we’ve all asked "what is my purpose in life" at least once. I can remember growing up wondering what my path would be.
Everyone around me seemed to already know what they felt destined to do except me.
I had different ideas of what I like, but nothing that really connected with me on a deeper level.
When I’ve seen people know what they were meant to do, the choices they made in life seemed simpler.
Most of what they did was all in support of that one pursuit they believed in. But for a good number of people, that one pursuit has never been clear.
Maybe it’s helpful to wonder if not everyone has one purpose they’re meant to do in life.
But even if you have more than one pursuit in life, it is possible to discover what it is and start living out your true desires.
Benefits of a purposeful life
There are many benefits that you can gain once you discover what purpose you feel you were meant to fulfill in life.
Here are a few studies you might find interesting:
- People with a purpose in life make better choices for their wellness.
- Having a sense of purpose has been proven to help you live longer.
- Those who have a purpose sleep better at night.
- People with a purpose in life have less bad moods.
There are many other scientific benefits to have a pursuit in life, but beyond the science, it just makes us feel better.
Knowing that everyday we have a reason to wake up and get out of bed makes life more worthwhile.
We feel a deeper satisfaction that's more than all of the momentary pleasures we sometimes use as a substitute for our lack of purpose.
How to discover your true purpose
I think there are three questions you can reflect on that can help you get closer to discovering what purpose (or purposes) in life you have.
1. Who am I?
I discussed this point once in an article on the best jobs for highly sensitive people.
People ought to focus more on the type of person they are to discover what would be best for them to do in life.
We all have personality traits that would be well suited for certain types of roles that could really use people with those traits.
If you’re a particularly calm and thoughtful person, your purpose may well be to help bring calm to those who need it most, such as in emergency situations.
Maybe you’re a very vocal person that speaks out often when something bothers you. Your purpose might be something related to speaking up for those who are unheard in our society.
Who you are as a person can be a helpful guide to figuring out what you’re meant to do with your life.
Spend time reflecting on your personality traits and how those traits could be useful.
2. What do I enjoy?
The most common go to question we’re usually told to think about when discovering our purpose is what do we enjoy in life.
For myself, I really enjoy writing, so I always knew in some capacity, that would be a part of what I’d be doing with my time someday.
I’ve known people who really enjoy drawing, taking photography, playing baseball, and a lot of other things.
They figured out that’s what they really liked and decided that would be their pursuit.
Take time to think about all the activities you like to do. Maybe one of them is something you can put your attention towards making a regular part of your life.
Related: 9 Scientific Benefits of Having Fun
3. What matters to me?
Everyone has something that matters to them. It could be your faith, it could be the environment, or it could be any number of things in the world.
It’s a matter of recognizing what’s been meaningful to you in life so far. Think about the thoughts and ideas that have been on your mind the most.
What you’ve reflected on the most is usually a good indication of what matters to you. Another thing you can also think about is what bothers you.
Have you seen something in the news that really made you mad or upset and made you wish could do something about that?
Maybe helping to fix that problem in society is one of the purposes you were meant to fulfill.
Final thoughts on purpose
It can take time to figure out what’s meant to be a part of your central focus in life.
Though I know a lot more about who I am, what I enjoy, and what matters to me now, I’m still sometimes figuring out what’s a part of my purpose.
I’ve learned that it’s a constant journey of discovering new things about yourself, new things you enjoy, and new things that matter to you.
What you think your true desires are now will probably change as you get older and that’s fine. It makes life more interesting for us.
As you continue to learn and discover new things, you’ll inevitably get closer to doing what you feel is your purpose.
As you live out your pursuit, you’ll find more satisfaction in life than you’ve ever had before.
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