Have you ever wonder how to fulfill your purpose and what you are really called to do? Do you find yourself unable to know where to begin or frustrated that you are not progressing forward?
If you watched my YouTube video this weekend I started to talk about what it takes to fulfill your dreams or goals. Today I want to talk about how true success comes from failing to success.
There are two areas that this applies, first in discovering your purpose and in building it.
I think that sometimes people will get stuck on the idea that they have to know exactly what they want before they even begin and they don’t give room to fail. They ask, “What do I want to be in life forever?!!” But what you really need to know is what the passion that drives you is, this then will allow you to know the sphere of focus you should pay attention to. Rather than answering the daunting question of “what is the only thing I want to be” focus more on “what is my passion that drives me and the activities within this passion that I can focus on”.
What is important when we begin to explore our passions in life is to understand that every experience we have will be a lesson for us. Either we will gain skills to take us to the next place we will be going in life, we will learn that it is not what we want to continue to do and can be directed in a new direction or we will discover it is exactly where we want to focus. In the process you will always gain new skills to take you into the next place. It is a process of building your purpose one brick at a time.
If you are starting out and want to write a book, for example, you may begin thinking “oh how exciting it would be to be an author” but then once you sit down and write your first book you may realize you hate writing. This would then give you three choices, begin to love writing, find someone to write for you or just choose not to write books. This doesn’t mean you cannot be passionate about your topic, it just means you don’t want to be an author that writes their own books. So the decision is really about discovering the “how” once you know the “what”. But regardless, you then gained the skill around book publishing, which you can pull out of your back pocket if ever needed.
Whenever you set out to accomplish and fulfill your passion it is important to pursue as many opportunities that you can to discover what works and what doesn’t. The majority of what you attempt will fail and this is what I am referring to when I say fail to success. The more we fail or the more opportunities that come to an end the closer we are to discovering what will succeed. Out of all the things we attempt a small percentage will actually succeed. Sometimes these opportunities can look the same or different.
It is not the science of choosing one project and making that thing be the only thing that will succeed, putting all your energy into only that thing. Many people do this and then when they fail, they just give up. But when you have multiple things you are pursuing the things that are supposed to succeed will. Then as you grow you will then experience more success which will compound on top of your previous success. But make no mistake about it, the more success you have along with it will come a large amount of failure.
It is much like when I first started to do sales calls for a business I have. I wasn’t good at it when I first began so I figured I could succeed just by increasing the number of people I called; because even if I made one sale out of 500 people, it was still a sale and then failing on all the others would only allow me to gain experience. So I would then call as many people as I needed in order to reach the sales I needed and I always grew through making those calls as an individual. Later I got better at communicating and doing calls and then had to call less people. But how many people would have just called the first 100 and after not making a sale would have given up? Well those same people when starting a business would most likely focus on one opportunity, then if that opportunity fell through they would be left with nothing.
We need to have the mindset that success is experienced through failure and through a quantity of opportunities rather than one.
My own purpose is a perfect example right now. Where I started a nonprofit eight years ago to help people. I knew I wanted to write books, I knew I wanted to see the impossible happen in people’s lives and I went after a ton of opportunities to do so. People saw my successful radio show, they saw my books published and I traveled to speak some but not every opportunity was successful.
I got to a point where I really wanted to expand what I was doing a couple of years ago. I had such an overwhelming passion that I wanted to offer courses through my website to help coach people into their purpose and I started to build it. Well, I was told by a peer “to focus” because I wasn’t just focused on just one thing. I understand this because many people are taught that they should only focus on one thing at a time. But when you do that you do not leave much room for success or failure, and your “one thing” has to succeed.
I think that this person also had the issue of not understanding the connection between me going from a “ministry” to now a “life coach”. But in my personal purpose they are one in the same. I have helped people to do the “impossible” in the past and will continue to do so in a variety of ways in the future. I may focus on one specific area at some point but can operate in all of the different facets of “life coaching” at any given time. In my mind there has never been any difference between “coaching” someone and "ministering" to them.
I found that the opportunities I have had to do “life coaching” outside the church have been more successful than “ministry” inside the church– so it is only natural to focus my attention to what is succeeding. This doesn’t mean I won’t take any “ministry” opportunities it just means my current opportunities are leading me in a new direction. I also discovered that because I am not a "religious" person I have not always "fit" into a religious environment and therefore it only makes sense I go where the success is.
So in summary since this blog was long today:
- Know your passion and what drives you
- Be willing to take any opportunity that comes your way within that passion because it will only cause you to grow
- Take on as many opportunities as you can so that you leave room for failure and discover what works
- Once you find what is working or where the success is, focus your energy on that area
- Expect that you will see more failure than success
- Be flexible by allowing yourself to fulfill your purpose in more ways than one
I hope that this helps you in walking out your purpose. I know that for me this is one thing that has afforded me the opportunity to learn and do so much and it has allowed me to know how to walk the path I am to walk. As they say, your gift will make room for you.