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“3 Ways to Uncover Your Purpose”

At some point in your existence, I’m pretty sure you have asked yourself, “what am I here for?”  “What am I doing with my life?” or “what’s my purpose?”  Right?  Sure, you have, even if it was for a brief moment.  Although, the big question after that is “how do I figure it out?”   It’s at this point where we seem to get stuck, sad, confused, or unmotivated.  It can be the one question that leads you to believe it’s out of your hands so you give up on figuring it out or it will motivate you to uncover who you truly are in order to live a purposeful life.  

And I know this because…?

There have been days where I have felt lost and stuck in a cycle of achieving more, not always financially, but proving to myself and others I could rise above the stereotypes and low expectations of being a young teenage mom who experienced many traumatic events.  I was going to be somebody.  But I really didn’t know who that somebody was created to be.  I tried to figure it out on my own, but I was going about it the wrong way, my way.  

My way consisted of writing down my goals and doing the work to accomplish them.  Some of those goals were being the first in my immediate family to graduate from college; moving up the ranks in my career; buying my first house; and, getting my master’s degree, just to name a few.  However, I didn’t give any thought to what was driving me or my purpose.  My only recurring thought was I had to succeed at achieving everything I set out to do and with each goal checked, I continued to feel like something was missing. 

I was going through the motions day after day doing what I thought I should do to keep me productive, not necessarily fulfilled.  Why didn’t I feel fulfilled and why was I becoming increasingly unmotivated to continue in the career I had chosen, a career where I excelled?  I felt like God was blessing me, yet it began to drain me emotionally and mentally.  One thing I was able to answer for myself was God doesn’t work that way.  He would never give you something that would get in the way of who He created you to be or what He called you to do.

Unfulfilled expectation

Honestly though, I felt stuck.  Yet, I came too far to change direction.  I couldn’t let all the years in school and the hard work go to waste.  This was going to be my purpose regardless of what my heart was speaking to me.  I was planning on making it work or so I thought.  It wasn’t until many years later when I was fired from a leadership position with a great salary that I realized I had trusted myself more than I trusted God.

Wait, WHAT?!!!  How did that happen?  Well, not taking the time over the years to understand who I really was, my values, passions, and gifts and how it tied into the decisions I was making.  I just knew what I could do and did it. 

Second, even with prayer and reading the Bible, my relationship with God wasn’t as intimate as it was in my head; and lastly, understanding my reason for being, my purpose, was not what I knew or thought was expected of me, but it was understanding who I’ve always been.   

Your purpose is not about what you think, feel or expect, nor is it based on how successful you are or become.  Your purpose is who you were created to be. It’s a part of who you are and who you’ve always been.  Therefore, your purpose is not to be discovered.  It’s to be uncovered. 

Uncovering Your Purpose

So here is where you must ask yourself, if purpose is not about what you’ve achieved or what you feel you should be doing, then what is it about and how do you begin to uncover it; especially, if you’re currently in a state of feeling lost, stuck or unfulfilled?  Well, here is what was discovered when I committed to the ‘uncovering’ journey of living my life with purpose on purpose:

  1. You have to become comfortable with understanding you were created for God’s purpose, not your own.  You don’t get to create your purpose.  It was already created before your existence.  Therefore, it’s only through having a relationship with God that you will find your reason for being, true purpose.  Start with asking God to help you center your life around Him;
  2. Take time to figure out what is the driving force in your life.  Is it fear, wanting approval, material things, resentment, money, etc.?  Whatever direction your life is taking is being steered by the force behind it.  So, if money is the driving force in your life, every decision you make or action you take will be for the sake of money, which doesn’t necessarily mean happiness or fulfillment.  The same rings true for fear, validation, love, etc.

Think or write about the driving force contributing to where you are currently in your life.  Does it communicate God’s love toward others?  Will it give your life meaning and make your life easier?  Are you able to stay focused and motivated?  Does it seem bigger than what you imagine?  If you answered no to at least two, it’s time to refocus and take inventory of your life. Download the Life Purpose Inventory.

  1. Live everyday with meaning and intent.  Have an intention or objective centered around why you are living and for whom you are living.   Become selective on what you do and why you do it.  Start living how you would like to be remembered.  If it seems overwhelming, start with one thing for a week.  For instance, be very intentional with being kind for 21 days (the time they say it takes to form a habit).  Then, move on to another trait important to you.

In Conclusion

Let me just say, when I started on this journey of refocusing to discover my true purpose, it was challenging, scary at times, yet very satisfying.  My spiritual relationship with God became a priority and it deepened in ways I didn’t know it could.  There was so much more to understand about myself, like my strengths, beliefs and the importance of having values to stand on and guide me. 

Your journey may not look like mine, but it has purpose.  Its purpose is for you to know you were created with an identity in Christ and it will lead you in truth and wisdom.  As you gain clarity and embrace who you truly are and what you stand for, knowing what you are called to do becomes evident and deeply desired.  When you uncover and live your purpose, you know where you want to go, you gain confidence, lead with intention, you’re happier, and more fulfilled.  Everything you commit to on your journey will become your message you leave to the world.  

So, where are you on your journey to uncovering your purpose? 

Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”  Proverbs 19:21 (NIV)

Coach Latrice