Have you ever asked yourself what you are on this earth for? What is the overall purpose you have for your life alone? As humans collectively we have a grand purpose but what is your purpose that only you are called to fulfill?
I have been talking a lot about finding your gift lately, finding the right vehicle for your gift and then allowing yourself to grow in that gift. Today I want to take this topic to an even deeper level and get you to begin to ask yourself some deeper questions.
So many times we will go after superficial things in life that we think will fulfill us but in the end do not. For example, some people have the goal to retire as soon as possible. But the reality is that just statistically speaking, for men alone, they have found the majority die just three years after they retire. And that is some people’s actual goal in life! Or maybe it is just to make a lot of money but in the end most people that make a lot of money realize it brings no lasting fulfillment at a deeper level.
Other times we go after experiences and trying to recreate an experience we felt alive in rather than identifying what it was about the experience that was meaningful and recreating the meaning.
So today let’s ask the deeper questions. Once you have discovered your gift, the one thing you do the best with the least amount of effort and you even identify vehicle(s) for that gift. It would not be enough to just live that in one area in your life because if it is our gift and our purpose it has to be useful and apply to all areas of our lives.
Think back to a time in your life when you felt really alive, when you thought “Wow, this is it, THIS is the meaning of life!” Ask yourself what you were feeling, what about it made you feel that way? Then think of another time in your life you felt that way and ask yourself the same question. Think of as many times as you can when you felt really alive! Just pause for a moment and remember the emotions you felt and why you were feeling that way.
When I first did this exercise I personally started at my faith. I thought back to an experience I had the first time I was in a church meeting and I felt the presence and power of God. I felt amazing! Then around me were a ton of people in tears being changed and transformed. I thought, “Wow, this is it, THIS is the meaning of life!” But what about that moment for me gave me that passion? It was that I felt alive and full from the inside out, I connected to something bigger than myself and found the power to help others and saw other’s lives changed. It was a HUGE moment for me because I had never seen that level of transformation before in a single setting.
But then fast forward in life and the reality is that you cannot live in a church meeting every day and the reality is that meeting’s like the one I experienced are rare. Most people I talk to have never experienced that and to re-create it quite frankly is in the hands of God Himself. Maybe at a deeper level I still feel a very deep meaning in that type of encounter or place where lives are changed. But I had to ask myself what about that experience truly made me feel that way? For me it was being in a state of complete fulfillment, finding solution and being able to bring that solution to others. I had to come to the point where I realized it wasn't just about the experience but the meaning for that experience.
Then I think of a time when I was given the task to find the problems a Fortune 500 client was having, identify the solutions for problems and then put that into a piece of marketing material or a proposal so that the client could succeed. I felt alive because I was solving the problems. Now this was a different level of fulfillment for me because it was not individuals I was necessary helping on a spiritual level but businesses - but I was still operating in the same type of “purpose”.
When I started my nonprofit my goal was the same to help people find the solutions they needed to be fulfilled and live life to the fullest. I wanted others to have the same type of experience I had spiritually and I was able to at some level recreate that. But because those types of moments are rare and extremely personal, I began to find solutions in my life in other areas and bring those solutions others as well. For example, I helped one friend start a nonprofit organization and build what she always dreamed she could do so she could live her purpose. I helped another person gain enough confidence to press forward in the music industry and record multiple CDs without the need for others approval to live his purpose. I began to identify potential in others and call it out. I helped people with their websites so that they could be more effective with their message. I had a podcast where I promoted the potential I saw in others and what they were doing to impact the world. I began creating resumes for people and coaching on how to ace interviews so that they could live at their full capacity. Testimonies came in from my own father who began to increase his income from my help, then my mother had the same experience, then I help others such as one lady who had never had a job before and her husband was divorcing her taking everything…and as the result of my help the first job she was offered she was paid more than most people get after years of hard work.
You see, no matter how or when we experience that moment of “Wow, this is it, this is what life is about!” It will be different for all of us and we shouldn't connect it to one experience no matter how meaningful that experience is...we must ask what about it was meaningful. I believe there are levels of meaning for our gifts, their meaning may be so deep they are eternal but also they may be just as spiritual as you begin to see how you can bring greater meaning to others lives or yet as simple as solving a problem for a business. When we find out what it is that we are feeling in those moments we can identify what it is that brings us greatest fulfillment and purpose.
What does your gift and purpose mean to your relationships, what you do and why? Obviously for me it is based around living full myself and helping others. If I am helping others and solving a problem around me whether it be in a romantic relationship, my family or my friends that is where I feel the most alive. What is it for you? It is so powerful when we know exactly how to produce a life where we feel alive...and it is not always as difficult as it seems.
So many times we think that our purpose has to be so big and grand, we get our minds focused on some gigantic vision and goal and while that is important we have to remember why we do what we do. What is it that brings us meaning, what is it that makes you feel alive right now? If we are always looking toward the day we can recreate an experience to feel alive we are missing it entirely.
When you begin to try to write out your purpose for your life it will become even clearer.
Mine is to serve God by living in a state of complete fulfillment, joy and happiness and peak performance, finding solutions first in my own life and then helping others by identifying their potential and bringing them solutions they need to allow them to rise up to that potential and also live in a peak state. As a result I envision thousands of people living in their highest potential, living in their fullest life possible impacting this world unlike it has ever been impacted.
You see I think sometimes we can identify one experience in our lives as I did, gain meaning from it and think that the only way to be fulfilled is to recreate that experience in the same way. That was my reality for many years which I found almost impossible. How do you recreate an act of God and live in it every day? But the truth is we have to live day in and day out and find how our purpose and meaning fits into those days. When you begin to discover at a deeper level why things make you feel alive and what meaning it has for you personally, you begin to understand what you need to be doing. It will be very similar to your gift and should align with it.
At the end of your life when you look back what do you want others to say about you? What do you want your contribution to be? All you will ever have is today, right now, so how can you make your every day...your current moment be collective moments that you feel most alive?