Before you can do anything significant in life, you have to find your purpose – at least that’s what the “experts” would lead us to believe. They say once you find or define your purpose, you can start framing your life around that purpose.
That thought process leaves us confused and wondering how to go about figuring out what our purpose in life is. Worse yet, it implies that we might as well forget doing anything until we find our purpose. It implies we can’t have a positive impact on the world until we find our purpose and that a true purpose in life doesn’t start until we find our purpose.
So we run around, or maybe it would be better put that we sit around, looking for and trying to find our purpose making exactly zero impact on the world.
Finding your purpose isn’t something you do before you start having an impact on the world. You find your purpose when you look back and see the impact you’ve had on the world.
Your purpose isn’t something that defines the impact you are going to have. Your purpose is what defines the impact you are making or that you already have had.
That isn’t to imply that we won’t find our purpose until we are on our deathbed. Clearly there are people that are living a life of purpose and having a huge impact on the world, but those people didn’t get to that point by sitting around trying to find their purpose.
The people that are making the biggest impact on the world, the people that are living a life of purpose started by with a set of goals and worked toward them. They didn’t spend days, weeks, months, or years trying to find their purpose. The simply started doing something.
Most people have great intentions and want to live a life of purpose, but in doing so they don’t realize that they are using “I have to define my purpose first” as an excuse to do nothing. They make finding their purpose too important.
They make it so important that they can’t get it wrong. They think that they have to be 100% right about their purpose before they can start working toward it. Then because they are never 100% sure that they have it right, they never start working toward it.
The people that ultimately find their purpose in life do three things. If you want to find a purpose and have a positive impact on the world you should do them too:
- Resist the urge to be right. Even if what you choose to do today doesn’t fit with your ultimate purpose doesn’t mean you have failed. You will still make a positive impact, and you will grow and learn from the experience.
- Set goals and work toward them as a means of finding your purpose. Goals, huge goals, are what you need to strive toward. Striving towards goals helps you grow, learn, and become more than you are today. The striving toward and accomplishing goals is what will ultimately help you find your purpose.
- Get started. There is no reason to get ready to get ready. Set a goal and go. Refine the goal later. There are no rules that say once you set a goal or once you find a purpose that those can’t change. Start making progress. Start making an impact. Then adapt your goals and purpose as you learn and grow. Right now your purpose is to make an impact. As you start making that impact your purpose will become more and more clear and more and more defined.
What’s the easiest way to find your purpose? The answer to that is to stop looking for it. Instead, get to work and let your purpose find you.
What are you going to do right now to positively impact the world? Share it with us in the comments section below (you can remain anonymous).