A notion that has never sat well with me is about purpose. We hear about it all the time from motivational books, to Oprah-type programs, to speakers who claim to have found it. When people talk about purpose they usually say something like, “do what you love.” Or “find and chase your passion.”
I want to suggest to you something about ‘purpose’ you may have never heard before…
I was raised into thinking that when you are growing up you have to be a good student, honor your parents, get good grades, then later on have an education and skills, go to college, then get a good job, find yourself a good woman to later marry and have kids.
You don’t “find” it. You CREATE it.
Because there is no purpose in life for us otherwise. I’m one of a billion of sperm, and so are you. Could have just as easily been the next one. We’re not accidents, but we also don’t get assigned a purpose and that’s a beautiful thing.
Tomorrow, either of use could slip on a banana peel and break our necks. Gone.
A meteor could come crashing through my windshield and it would be over.
I realized this a few years ago when I thought “I found a purpose” and began a new life in a new career in a state. When my circumstances changed, some due to unforeseen external forcues… my purpose changed. My work changed, my personal life changed.
Thus … my “purpose” was gone. So now it was up to me to create a purpose.
We’ve all heard that “EAT / PRAY / LOVE” crap women talk about. “Finding themselves”. We are constantly talking about a need to “find themselves”.
As if you don’t take any active role in their own lives. Some people will actually make a drastic life decision (like cheating, breaking up, moving, changing careers, spouses, etc0 from a life of purpose (motherhood, fatherhood, mentor, coach) to “find themselves” as if they didn’t have a purpose already.
Observe the way the current mainstream culture talks about “love”. Same crap. (i.e. When will I FIND “myself”? etc.)
It’s important to stop talking about “finding” it, and start CREATING it.
Mature people CREATE themselves.
Looking to find purpose is like waiting for things to happen to you. Tsunamis “happen”. Brain tumors “happen”. But creating a purpose doesn’t happen to you. You go out and MAKE it happen.
A lot of people let things happen to them and they unintentionally find themselves living a life they didn’t really want. That’s why taking an active role in your life is so important. I could have easily been a father TWICE already (or many more). But they only reason I am not, is because I was so focused on it. Finding myself in situations were never really appealing to me. Creating it was a priority.
If there wasn’t a need for this type of knowledge, I wouldn’t have written this blog. There’s a purpose.
If I had no interest in self improvement and it didn’t bother me to leave a weak life in a weak body, I wouldn’t have the purpose I have now – there’s another purpose.
Travel the world? I CREATED the purpose of joining the Marines and living in different countries. That was a purpose. I didn’t find my way there, I created it.
The purpose of “finding” (or having) a job is to work so you can make enough money to do things you want to do when you’re not working. Read that last sentence again. The work is not the purpose. Do you live to work? Or do you work to LIVE.
A super easy way to CREATE your purpose, or your “Script” in life:
Your script has three parts:
1. How you feel now.
2. How you want to feel in the future.
3. What it takes to bridge the gap between #1 and #2.
Then #3 will determine your purpose. Super simple, and it dispenses with all the new-age nonsense about “what you were born to do”.
Don’t worry about purpose. It isn’t going to change anything even if you do find it.
Men and Women pull their hair out trying to find purpose. Then once they do, they still continue pulling their hair out trying to fulfill it. Being alive is purpose enough. Purpose doesn’t give meaning to life. Life gave it to purpose. I can guarantee you that if you do an in-depth study of older languages they had no word for “purpose” yet those men continued on.
Observe as much as you can. Remember your actions have both observable and unobservable consequences. Don’t get upset about it at all. Don’t ignore it either.
Why You shouldn’t Make Long Term Goals
Five year goals are much too limiting. If you asked me 5 years ago where I would be today, I would not have believed you. And if you asked me 10 years ago , where I would be 5 years ago, I would not have believed you either. My life is NO WHERE NEAR what I imagined 10 years ago. Right now, I’ve been to another country and moved two states in the last 10 years!
The trick is to set short 6-month goals and to constantly be creating opportunities for yourself. IN doing so, you open doors for yourself and CREATE CHOICES. A man is not “rich” when he has money. He is rich when he has CHOICES. The poorest people have the fewest CHOICES. When you create CHOICES, there are little paths that open up for you. You want the ability to choose whether to go right or left as much as possible. If you make a GOOD short term goal and attain it, you proceed in that direction. If you make a BAD choice, you can take a step back and go the other way.
But if you set a 5 year goal in only ONE SPECIFIC DIRECTION you severely limit yourself along the way and restrict your path into only one direction which you don’t deviate from for FIVE YEARS!!!? Who wants to do the last 5 years over again??
So lets say you have a 5-year goal.
A LOT can happen in 5 years that you weren’t counting on.
In fact, life will GUARANTEE to throw a few monkeys in the wrench and mess up your plan.
Perhaps the business you set out to start fails.
Perhaps the company you wanted to work for the next 10 years closes and goes under.
Perhaps you wanted to have your house paid off in 5 years,
but you lost your job after 18 months and couldn’t get one for another 9 months.
5-year goals are like tying your hands behind you back and telling yourself to RUN blind folded in one direction only, and then removing the blindfold in 5 years to see where you ended up.
SET SIX MONTH GOALS
then break then down into 12 week goals.
It’s much more realistic and your rate of success with be greatly enhanced.