Are you living your dreams? When you wake up every day, are you doing the things that you most want to do in this life, more than anything else you could ever possibly hope to accomplish and do – or are there some things missing? I understand that feeling of something missing all too well, and I often wonder (especially these days), if I am doing what I am meant to be doing with this life of mine. Here is an article to help us figure this all out:
You’ve probably heard about the supposed way to “figure out your purpose” in less than a minute. Basically, for those not in the know, it’s a process in which you just keep writing what you think it could be until you start crying. Or something. I really in no way mean to discredit this method. I’m sure it’s worked beautifully for many people. I only mean to speak for anyone who may not be so emotionally attuned — who are more comfortable seeing their “purpose” as something more practical.
At the end of the day, your idea of what you’re “meant to do” in life is really important, if only for the fact that it is a lens through which you’ll perceive everything else. The key here is to realize that the shape of that lens is ultimately up to you. It’s not something anybody else can impose on you, or something you should look to anybody else to understand. The reality is that until this comes from a true and genuine and deep place of understanding, you’re not going to believe it, and you’re not going to live it out. So here, to get you started, are nine ways to figure out what you’re “meant” to do (for when sitting and just crying doesn’t work).
Make A List Of What Your Natural Abilities Are
You can be as abstract as you are literal and practical. Or you’re good at helping or healing or painting or writing or being a student. Let yourself fully acknowledge all the things you’re good at, even if they don’t immediately seem transmutable into a “career.”
Make A List Of What Your Natural Interests Are
Do you like math? Art? Human beings? Social interactions? Psychology? Self-help? What do you read? What articles do you regularly click on? Whom do you follow on Twitter? All of these things comprise who you are; they’re not random details, they’re symbolic and important. And pieced together, they create patterns that point to larger truths.
See Where The First Two Overlap
You need to have interest, ability, dedication, and drive. If any of those aspects aren’t present, you probably aren’t going to actually be able to execute your dream life the way you want to. There’s “luck” (I don’t personally believe in that, but some do), there’s chance, there’s possibility, but when those are too shaky for you to rest your future on, rely on what you can control: what you want to do, how well you can do it, and how you’re going to create a consumable product/profession out of it.
Imagine Yourself At Age 95, Nearing The End Of Life. What Will You Be Proud For Leaving Behind?
All that we’ll leave behind, ultimately, is what is in our hearts. If this is true, what will be left of you at the end of the day? What makes you proud to be alive? What makes you proud to be who you are?
What Do You Want To Be Remembered For After You Do Go?
Do you want people remembering you for how many hours you spent in an office, or how many hours you spent with family and friends? Do you want to be remembered for what a good [profession] you were? Do you want to be remembered for how kind you are? Do you want to be remembered for both? Take it all into consideration.
What Makes You Feel At Peace?
Not what makes you feel joyful, or even “happy.” Those emotions are fleeting, and are not grounded sensations upon which you can truly build a sustainable life. Focus on what makes you feel at peace with yourself. That’s where you should be headed.
What Did You Dream Of Doing As A Child?
It’s often not the profession itself that you want to emulate as an adult, but what it symbolizes. Teachers often want to mentor/guide, vets want to care for beings that don’t have voices, astronauts want to explore and achieve something beyond day-to-day life. These are just a few examples, but it’s really important to note that what we desired as children are projections of who we really are (even if those *exact* projections aren’t what we really want).
Think About What You Want To Do Every Single Day — Not What Title You Want To Have, Or What Accolades You Want To Achieve
What do you want your everyday life to consist of? Think about it on an hour-to-hour basis. If you only focus on what you want the image to be, you’re only considering how you want other people to consume your life — not how you want to actually live it.
In A Dream World, What Does Your Fully-Actualized, Best Self Look Like?
The trick and the truth is that the person you imagine is who you truly are. The work you have to do is getting everything else out of the way that convinces you that you are any less. Your best self is the person you’re meant to be, and whatever that person is and does, is what you’re meant to do.
These are such great suggestions, especially that last one. I have often struggled with feeling unfulfilled – but really, I had no idea what a fulfilled life would look like. It’s important to take a moment to figure out what it is that you need in order to feel complete, don’t you think? Here’s another article to help you focus on changing things up and living your best life:
“Information is not knowledge.” ~Einstein
A few years ago I was lost. Frustrated. Scared. Unsure. Anxious. Trapped. Unfulfilled. Stuck in a dead-end job. Smothered by society’s expectations. Didn’t have a clue what I wanted to do with my life.
I cared for myself enough to change my life, but I didn’t have the slightest clue where to start. I spent my days wishing that things would change—that I could escape a life that my soul could no longer bear.
The worst part of all, I was living the life that society had always told me to live. “Find a secure job, work hard,” they would say. “Get a solid job and work your way up the ladder.”
I don’t know about you, but it turns out that for me, the “right thing to do” sucked the joy out of life.
Imagine feeling trapped in an unsatisying existence. Wasting your precious time doing things that you really don’t want to be doing. Being afraid to express your uniqueness. Having fun on the weekends then dreading the upcoming week. Maybe you don’t have to imagine it; maybe your life is just like mine was, few moments of satisfaction drowned out by a constant grind of work that doesn’t fulfill you.
Then something hit me. It was a proverbial hammer to my head. I’d heard it before, but it had never sunk in. Then, as if out of nowhere, a voice in my head spoke loudly and clearly.
“Discover who you truly are and fully give every aspect of your uniqueness to the world. This is your path to an extraordinary life.”
I followed this wisdom as if my life depended on it. And I can tell you that my life has changed for the better since I followed this guidance.
I can tell you without any doubt that the greatest piece of wisdom that I’ve discovered in my life thus far is this:
If you want to live an extraordinary life it is imperative that you know who you truly are, and to do so you must explore who you truly are.
These 6 questions changed my life forever. They will also change your life forever by allowing you to find your true self, and in doing so, discover why you’ve been born into this great world.
I’m not talking about the “self’” that others demand you to be or the self that acts a certain way to fit in and conform with what society accepts. I’m talking about the true you—the you who wants to authentically express your special and unique qualities to the world.
By answering these questions you will discover your unique passions, strengths, values, desires, and motivations, which are all yearning for your expression.
You have a unique purpose. Discovering the answers to these questions will allow you to align yourself with that purpose and bring real magic into your life.
Self-knowledge is the greatest knowledge that you will ever acquire. Why? Because your ability to fulfill your unique internal drive will determine your ability to fulfill your potential, which in turn determines the quality of your life.
The questions below are designed to help to know yourself deeply and find what is truly important to you. We all have an unexpressed potential; the exercises are specifically designed to help you find yours.
1. What do I absolutely love in life?
List anything that you love about the world and the people in your life. Think about any activities that get you excited and enthusiastic and make you feel most alive. This can be absolutely anything: music, sports, cooking, teaching others, learning, watching movies—anything. Within your love for these things lies deep passion.
2. What are my greatest accomplishments in life so far?
List all of the moments that you are proud of as well as the times that you’ve succeeded. To have accomplished these, you would have used some of your key strengths. See if you can identify why you succeeded. Also, list any activities, hobbies, or anything else that you do that you complete with ease. Within these lie greatest strengths.
3. What would I stand for if I knew no one would judge me?
List everything that you would do if you weren’t afraid, even your wildest dreams. This will help you discover your greatest values.
4. If my life had absolutely no limits and I could have it all and do whatever I wanted, what would I choose to have and what would I choose to do?
Describe your ideal lifestyle. List what you would do throughout the day if you knew that you were bound to be successful, what kind of person you would be, how much money you would earn, and where you would live.
This question allows you to realize who you would truly want to be if there were no limits. By aligning with this you can begin working towards the life that you truly want to create. Know that you wouldn’t have a desire if you didn’t also have the ability to fulfil it.
5. What would I do if I had one billion dollars?
List everything that you would really love to do if you had all the money in the world. Okay, so you would probably travel the world, buy a house or two, and give some money to your family. Then what would you do with your time?
This question helps you to think without limitations. When we are able to remove limitations and boundaries, we can discover what we really want to do.
6. Who do I admire most in the world?
List your greatest inspirations and the qualities that you admire about these people. Think about what really inspires you in this world. What you admire about others is also a quality that is in you. Know that you admire someone because they have similar qualities to you.
Taking the time to answer these questions will change your life. The more that you can implement your passions, strengths, values, desires, and motivations into your days, the happier your life will become!
You can study to become a doctor, lawyer, teacher, or anything else, but this knowledge will only take you so far. Meanwhile, discovering the deep wisdom of self-knowledge will ensure that your life is far more meaningful and fulfilling. I’ve got a feeling that is what Einstein meant when he said “Information is not knowledge.”
The most valuable knowledge that you will ever discover is, and always will be, within.
These are really great, don’t you think? I especially love the idea of thinking about what you would stand for if you would never be judged – says a lot about society that we even have to think of being judged by others in the first place, don’t you think? I plan to sit down and start answering these questions as they apply to me…and I hope you will take a few minutes to do the same. I pray that the answers will enlighten us, and something magical will happen. I believe. 🙂