Igniting your sense of purpose
About the author
Nancy Laurenson, MSc. NBC-HWC, is a wellness navigator and health coach at the Barton Center for Orthopedics and Wellness.
Living in alignment with a sense of purpose gives our lives a solid foundation and allows for true meaning and joy to emerge.
One of the pillars of wellness is pursuing a sense of purpose, and unlocking what it means to you can greatly improve your well-being. As important as having a sense of purpose is for our mental and physical health, finding it can be difficult due to the distractions of our daily lives and routines.
Here are my suggestions to discover what ignites your passion and can help you live a purpose-driven life:
Determining what brings meaning to your life is the first and most critical step. What has meaning helps define importance, and builds the foundation from which we live our lives. If you volunteer, have a hobby or an activity that you enjoy, then you have already found a passion. Invest time in this passion as often as possible and start sharing your experience and insights with the world.
If you still haven’t found a passion or purpose, perhaps it is time to explore this concept and take time for reflection. Look carefully everywhere around you. Go back to your childhood pleasures. Where do you get “into a flow” or lose track of time? Has your calling been somewhere close, but you were too distracted to connect with it?
Volunteering or giving a helping hand to be of service can also aid self-exploration.
It helps to have clarity around your desires, aspirations or dreams. Our vision for passion and purpose usually takes time to unfold and often changes over the years.
Seeking clarity and allowing for exploration to find your passion or purpose is part of life’s traveled path. Sometimes we stumble; other times the path seems more straightforward or may have accompanied us for years. Always, it is about questioning and allowing new ideas to shape and define who we are or what we truly want.
Ask yourself, what do you love doing? Where does your heart feel contentment? When does your best self appear? We each have unique gifts to share with the world, from raising a child to caring for the sick, building a bridge or bringing laughter to others. What are your unique gifts? Where does compassion, civic calling and meaning intersect in your life?
Leave your comfort zone
To ignite your sense of purpose, you may need to get outside of your comfort zone to do something that you’ve always wanted to do, but never had the courage or opportunity to do so.
Perhaps, take more risks. Go on an adventure without planning. Jump into a big decision and make the most of it. Have fun exploring the meaning in your life beyond the day-to-day routine.
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