How to Define Your Purpose

How to define your purpose?” It is one of the questions I often asked in my consulting sessions by many people and entrepreneurs. It is odd to listen something like that by people counting many years of work in a specific field, but, it seems, that there is a general problem because many people  have caught in the trap of “making ends meet” and have lost their life purpose!

How To Define Your Purpose

This is a bad feeling both from a personal as from a professional viewpoint! And it needs to be addressed immediately in a way that would re-established the person’s life balance!

What Is The Problem

You are not just a person who works, has a career and you need, at the end of the day, to get the money for paying your bills! And certainly, you are not just a person who lives alone, without a family, friends, relationships, and other people! You are both and, most of the times. concurrently!

You live, work, dream, do, have, be, want, love, share, communicate, lead, follow, grow, teach, learn, support, help, believe, like, dislike, etc. aiming at living the fullest version of your dreams and life!

At the same time, you do business or enterprises, you schedule your personal and professional future, analyze, design, organize, code, develop, sketch, paint, make music, dance, etc. in order to grow your potential and enhance your capabilities.

You are a multilevel entity encompasses many varieties of dreams, visions, ideas, approaches, habits, mindsets, beliefs, learning modes,  styles, etc. into a unified and consisted action system aiming to serve your personal (and business) goals and objectives!

The problem is that you have never designed your life for something like that! You never intentionally, and unequivocally have sat down with yourself to think about that and design the life you want to live!

This particular problem is especially acute when you reach a certain age and looking back, you find out that your life path is not the one you have wanted to live!

A Life Without Purpose

The problem of living without a guide is widespread among leadership circles and it is pinpointed by many authors. It is presented, very eloquently, by Michael Hyatt in his Life Plan: Designing The Life You’ve Always Wanted, at one of his podcasts with the same subject and it will be re-emerged again at his next book Living Forward!

Michael states that:

“When it comes to life, most people are spectators.They watch events unfold a day at a time. They may plan their careers, the building of a new home, or even a vacation, but it never occurs to them to plan their life.

As a result, they drift along, often to destinations they would have never consciously chosen: failing health, a broken marriage, or a stalled career.” (Michael Hyatt: LIVING FORWARD)

And he was right! Most of the people have never got into the trouble of defining their real purpose in life. Instead, they keep on complaining about the obstacles and hardships they have encountered in their life. And they, have right, as well. Because as Lewis Carroll has described “if you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there” (Brainyquote)

And that is exactly where starting the job of a consultant, aiming at helping someone to discover his/her life purpose!

A Simple Recipe for Defining Your Purpose

In my business, I need various recipes to help me understand what are the requirements of the person I talk with. This is especially more difficult when I associate or work with someone virtually or from a distance! I such situations I use a mixture of frameworks and techniques to help me identify the “pain” of the person I talk with in order to serve him/her better!

The first and foremost tool in my toolbox is “listening” carefully and actively on what the other person saying. Sometimes the real intentions of a person are not laying on what he/she says but on how he/she says something or, even, at his/her pause.

A second framework I often use is a set of carefully structured questions which would provide in a short time the required clarity to our discussion. These questions, if used properly, can establish a common “communication” between the two parties and focus the discussion on what worth to be covered!

The method I used is derived by the work of Ryan Allis as presented in his wonderful presentation Lessons From My 20s (a must read for every entrepreneur, I believe).

His solution for developing a business that it is aligned with your purposes is simply the intersection of four (4) critical areas:

  1. What are you good at?
  2. What do you love doing?
  3. What have the Market Needs?
  4. What can you be paid for?

The intentional and clear answer to these question can provide more information about what your purposes in life are and how these can be aligned with your vision, your life, and your business.

Of course, to define your life’s purpose is a lifelong venture! But this simple recipe can orient you to the core areas of your life, define your true priorities and help you to do the business (and the life) you really want!

Question: What do you say? Comment here!

    e-Business | e-Learning Consultant

    Takis Athanassiou is an IT Consultant, Blogger, Trainer & Writer, active in the areas of leadership, business consulting, e-Learning and social media. He aims at the development of people, business and assets! You can check out his blog, add him in Google+ and follow him on Twitter.

    Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.