Ten ways to find out.
This post is available in audio on my YouTube channel here: https://youtu.be/B1xNQjIB4uk
I apologize for my absence last week, I had some medical things going on. I’m getting better now, things shall resume as normal. I hope you’re having a happy Monday and I invite you to take a break and relax for story time.
I have mentioned before that I enjoy writing prompts. A simple thought carries my brain in multiple directions. I enjoy the challenge of thinking and, even more, recording those thoughts. I wasn’t sure where to go with my upcoming YouTube segment. Mondays are designated to be motivational and uplifting. I scoured the internet for help, and almost immediately,this sentence stood out to me:
What is your unique purpose?
The thought brings me to the existential question, why are we here? The answer is likely because we have a purpose, but how do we know what that is? Or is it even true? Here are my ten thoughts on the subject.
- 1.Believe. To discover your unique purpose, you must believe that you have one. I do think everyone has a particular purpose, as we are all unique individuals. Our structure is made different than anyone else’s, right down to everyone having their unique fingerprint.
- 2.Faith-based. As Christians, Faith teaches that God puts us on the earth for a purpose and will remain here until we complete it. We are also taught only God knows what that purpose is, but through prayer, we can ask Him to lead us to it. So, first, we believe that God has given us a purpose, and then we ask Him to lead us to it and follow our hearts where we think He is taking us. In my novel, “Have Faith,” Zoe’s main character undergoes several trials in her life that test her beliefs. At one point, she gives up, but inspiration comes from some unlikely sources. That’s all I’m saying about that. Feel free to snag the book on Amazon to learn more. (end shameless book plug here.)
- 3. Do what feels right. We all have that little voice in our heads that tells us right from wrong. Well, okay, most of us have that little voice. I do think part of psychopathology is missing that conscience piece, but most of us have one. We also get that intuitive gut feeling. If something feels wrong, it probably is. I had this feeling in my career. After 18 years in social work, my job no longer brought me joy. Most often, work stressed me out to the max, which I believe contributed to my variety of health problems. Following the corporate structure didn’t feel like what I was supposed to do. Crying every morning when I woke up and dreading going to work also didn’t feel right. I often curse diabetes and the shape I’m left in, but now, even thinking about having to return to my old field gives me intense anxiety. It took me a while to realize, but I believe I wasn’t meant to be there.
- 4. Don’t follow the crowd. Remember that old expression, “If all of your friends jumped off a cliff would you do it too?” There is some merit to that. Doing something because every else is doing it is not your unique purpose. Doing something you want to do and feels right is a much better way to go.
- 5. Show your personality. For a long time, I was a no personality wallflower in public. I was afraid of being rejected by others. I was the saltless square cracker version of a human. You know, those crackers that you try to sneak to the dog but get caught because they don’t want them either? -yep, that was me. If a saltless cracker personality was what I showed people, I realized that they expect me to be a wallflower all the time. I don’t want to be a flat piece of cardboard food. I’m much happier being a fishy cracker or a pretzel fish cracker. Now, I realize “cracker” is generally a derogatory term for a person. In this instance, it’s a metaphor. Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with the makers of any of these snacks.
- 6. Stand up for yourself. Too often, we have ideas of what we want to do or be but don’t pursue them because someone else doesn’t think we should. Conforming to what others want us to lead us back to that proverbial cliff we don’t want to jump off. Just because others don’t understand or discourage our ideas doesn’t mean we shouldn’t pursue them. Our ideas are a big part of what makes us unique. Bearing in mind, of course, that occasionally people will point out why something is a bad idea, and we should always consider that advice.
- 7. Take risks. Not risks like I could die, but more of I’m afraid to do this. Don’t be scared to be who you are. Don’t be scared to go down a new path just because it might not work out. What if it does work? Being afraid to do something is much different than not doing something because it’s wrong.
- 8. Don’t be afraid to seek help. Do you have an idea of something you want, but you’re not sure how to pursue it? Ask someone familiar with what you want. The worst they can say is no; they won’t help you. For everyone who says no, there’s someone out there who will say yes. Asking for help can also refer to our mindset. Mental health matters have gained a lot of much-needed attention these days. It’s okay not to be okay, and it’s more than okay to ask for help with becoming okay.
- 9. It’s perfectly fine to start over. Last year was eye-opening to me. Not just because 2020 was an absolute disaster for the entire universe, but personally, my life went in a whole different direction. Often in my career, I would express displeasure to myself but think about what I would do if I weren’t doing this? Eventually, the universe forced my hand to find out. If you’re not happy in your current life, change it. That’s the only way anything gets any better or different. Become who you want to be, even if that means starting from square one in a new direction. Do this over and over again until you’re content. It’s the only way you’ll ever get there.
- 10. Finally, accept you may not figure out what your purpose in life is. You may go in many different directions, start over hundreds of times, and something may never feel right. That’s okay; what matters is you’re trying.
To sum up, be yourself. Your unique purpose in life starts with being an individual person. Oscar Wilde says, “Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.”
Have Faith, and my other books are available on Amazon, Kindle and Kindle unlimited, here: http://www.amazon.com/author/catbanks