What’s your “why?” What motivates you to get out of bed every day? Why do you do what you do? These are big questions and ones that some people just don’t have an answer for. The sad truth is that a lot of us do the things we do every day simply because it’s what we’ve always done, and we don’t know anything different or don’t know how to change.
Establishing your “why” means finding the things that inspire you, but what makes that so important? As John C. Maxwell said, “Find your why and you’ll find your way.” The path toward your goals becomes clearer when you’re passionate about the reason you’re trying to reach those goals in the first place. This leads to happiness, contentment, and fulfillment.
Are you ready to find your life’s purpose? Here are the two essential questions to ask yourself.
What are your life goals?
Deciding what you want to get done by the end of the week, month, or year is important. But what about the things you want to accomplish in your lifetime? Is your goal to be happy and healthy 20 years from now? Or do you hope to travel to a certain number of countries by the time you’re 60? Goals like this are connected to your purpose, and today is the perfect day to start working toward achieving them. There are two types of goals to keep in mind when deciding what you want to do in life.
- Intrinsic goals have to do with personal growth and helping others. They align with our needs as humans, reflecting our desire for self-knowledge and fulfilling relationships.
- Extrinsic goals are more culturally defined. These have to do with physical appearance, social standing, status, and wealth.
Research suggests that by focusing on your intrinsic goals, you’ll be setting yourself up for greater happiness, self-actualization, and satisfaction with life. However, there is evidence that the content of our goals is less important than our reason for pursuing them. And this brings us back to the concept of our why. There is no shortcut for this one … having a solid reason behind what you do is the ultimate way to succeed.
What do you enjoy doing?
Best-selling author Fabienne Fredrickson said, “The things you are passionate about are not random. They are your calling.” The most important step to finding your life’s purpose is identifying the things you truly love to do. The fun thing about life is that the things you love to do can constantly be changing, meaning something you enjoyed 20 years ago may not be what you enjoy today.
This is demonstrated in the story of psychologist Pamela Struntz. She started out as an accounting major in college, a field she admits she didn’t love but knew would pay well. A traumatic family accident led her to get involved in psychology, which led to a love of teaching others, which finally led her to counseling and therapy. “What is passion, but a love for what you do and how you do it,” she writes. “I was blessed to find several passions in my life, and several different careers, with all of them being what I needed at that stage in my life to get me where I am today. Find your passion and don’t forget to look everywhere.”
There is no rule that says you’re only allowed to do one thing for your entire life (how boring would that be?). What are you passionate about right now? Whatever it is, it isn’t random … it’s your calling.
Forming your why is the best thing you can do to make the most out of life and achieve things beyond your wildest dreams. Stop for a moment and ask yourself our two simple questions. You’ll find your calling in life is closer than you think.
Looking for some tips on productivity? Read our blog post here for four great habits to adopt!