In terms of the work we do, people tend to fall into one of two categories. There are those who work to live – pegging away at something uninspiring that they don’t especially like to just to pay the bills. Then there are the other half- the ones who live to work. These are the lucky people who have found their vocation in life and are carrying out work that fulfills their soul and captures their mind. Having a sense of purpose in life can literally be transformative. We have the power of choice, and we should use that to find the role which fits us best in the world. All this is easier said than done of course. Some people spend a lifetime trying to find that one thing that makes their soul jump for joy, while others seem to be born knowing what it is. So, if you don’t know what your motivation in life is yet, how do you figure it out?
Finding Your Purpose
The truth is, very few people just know what their calling in life is. Most who say they’ve known since childhood are just lucky enough to have been exposed to some practical stimulus that made it clear to them – such as that emergency room visit that made them realize they wanted to be a doctor or having a relative become a lawyer and inspiring them to do the same. Most often, we can’t sit around and wait for the right influence to strike. We have to be motivated to seek out our purpose. The trouble is, we’re under mounting pressure from society, our families and the school system to decide early on in life. And the more that we can’t seem to find what our calling is, the more this pressure intensifies. Discovering what you were born to do isn’t an overnight thing – it’s a process. However, if you know how to go about it and you have the right attitude towards it, you can succeed. Your reward? A lifetime of knowing that you’ve found the right channel for your talents, whether that’s becoming a firefighter or gaining your online masters in school counseling.
Taking Action Gives Clarity
Creating a positive forward momentum in your life tends to set off a chain reaction of things that will lead you to what you’re meant to be doing. You need to get out there, experience the world, travel, do work placements and find internships and expose yourself to as many different walks of life as you can. Making these connections is an essential step in guiding you onto the right path. Often it’s a chance encounter that can have a transformational effect. Once you begin doing something – and it doesn’t much matter what – you’ve created a dynamic of change, and those new experiences will open doors. If you don’t know where to begin, try volunteering. Find a cause that speaks to your heart and dedicate some time to it. It’s likely to spark something that will draw you closer to causes you feel strongly about.
Understand What You’re Good At
The next helpful step is understanding where your natural talents lie. It’s not to say you can’t become good at something if you work at it, but that rarely shows success unless you feel passionate about what you’re trying to learn. Your best bet is to find an activity which puts you into a state of flow. Flow is a state of being where you’re pursuing an activity and are so absorbed in it that you almost go into your subconscious. It’s finding a task that gives you pure joy. This could be reading, for example. If you love reading and you love inspiring others, then training to be an English teacher could be a nice fit. You are likely to find more success when you put your efforts into something you have a natural talent for – we tend to be better at those things we enjoy, and enjoy those things we are good at. Think about the school subjects which have come more naturally. What skills do these involve? How do those skills relate to a job or career path? Taking an aptitude test can often be helpful to crystallize in your mind what you’re naturally good at, and steer you towards occupations which are likely to make the best use of these skills.
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About the Author
This article was written by a contributing author.