How To Find Your Purpose in Life
In a long overdue catch-up call, my dear college friend and soul sister Ellie confided in me. She admitted that she doesn’t know what her purpose is, or even where to begin to find out.
“What do I do if I don't know what my purpose is?” she asked.
Ellie told me she liked the idea of discovering her purpose but she simply didn’t know where to start.
In fact, Ellie’s quandary is common among empty nesters. After all, once the kids are grown and gone, the purpose and driving force of a mom’s life is often gone, too. And, like Ellie, many empty-nester moms who work at jobs they don’t like, feel that they have to continue doing so because, well, it pays the bills.
Ellie continued, "I would love to leave this job and do something that expresses my purpose in life! But how do I figure out what my purpose is?"
Are you like Ellie? A lot of people, especially spiritual folks, think that they should know what their purpose is. But the truth is, a sense of purpose is more like a mirage than a reality for most people. The presence of a sincere desire to help others, to do something meaningful, and to be the change you want to see in the world is evidence that there is a purpose that is lying dormant within you, wanting to reveal itself.
Here’s what I advised my dear friend — and what I suggest to you, too, if you also have the desire to get in touch with your purpose in life.
“Dear Ellie! Get a coach!”
I waited for her response, half-expecting a common reaction of resistance or pushback to the idea. But Ellie surprised me!
" Of course!” she said. “That makes so much sense!”
She continued. “When I had a leaky kitchen sink and tinkered with it for days, I couldn't stop the leak myself so I called an expert: a plumber. He came over and fixed the sink in 15 minutes. I had no problem paying him to take care of it for me. Of course! I need an expert to help me find my purpose.”
Ellie was exactly right. How would Dorothy have known how to find Oz if she hadn’t accepted help from Glinda the Good Witch, a powerful ally who was familiar with Oz and could forewarn her of dangers, and help her arrive there safely, and successfully?
(By the way, certified coaches do not coach friends or family members because it changes the dynamics that could alter the relationship. So, as much as I wanted to help Ellie, I knew I couldn’t.)
Ellie was ecstatic. Our conversation ignited an immediate flurry of activity. It’s only been a few days and she’s already booked a consult with a true purpose coach! She’s opened the door to stepping into the life she is meant to lead. And I couldn’t be happier for her.
How To Find A Great Coach to Help You Find Your Purpose:
1) Work with someone who is an expert at helping people discover their life purpose. This starts by choosing a coach who is unquestionably living a life of passion and purpose.
2) Work with a coach who will empower you to connect with the wisdom within you. While it might seem tempting to have someone simply tell you what to do, learning how to find the guidance within yourself is golden.
3) Don’t try to go it alone. A good coach will save you lots of time, reduce your anxiety, and minimize your self-criticism. She’ll ask you the penetrating questions that will help you see and understand your purpose more clearly so that you can realize it more quickly.
4) Find a certified coach who is trained in the transformative process of personal discovery, awareness, and growth. Certified coaches operate from a set of standards and competencies that create a fertile environment for positive change.
5) Coaching can be done in person, by phone, or by Skype, so don’t limit yourself to your local area. You’ll get much more out of it if you work with someone with whom you feel a sense of trust and connection. Work with someone across the country if that’s the person you click with.
6) Finding your purpose is soul work. Career coaches, outplacement coaches, and generic life coaches — as valuable as they are for certain things — are not the best choice for you to determine your purpose. Seek someone who knows how to take a deep dive and connect to the soul. Take a look at their website. If within 5 seconds you see information about finding your calling — your passion, your purpose — you are in the right place.
7) Identifying your purpose is the just the first step. The next step is to learn how to live with that purpose and thrive. The right coach will know how to help you turn your purpose into your life’s work. Choose a coach who has expertise with the less-glamorous aspects of living your purpose: the skills of business development, marketing and sales.
Finding your purpose, and staying on purpose, is a step-by-step process. Hiring a coach is the first step. The right coach will help you help you keep your eyes on the prize: living a life of enthusiastic joy, meaning, passion and purpose.
Take the first step to live the life you’re meant to live now. Your purpose is waiting for you!