If you struggle with not knowing what you want to do with your life, I have a radical piece of advice for you.
Stop searching for your purpose.
It may seem counter-intuitive, but this pattern of thinking is what is actually blocking you from finding out what you're meant to do.
It may feel like without knowing our purpose, it’s impossible to know what correct actions we should make in our lives.
This is a false belief that actually keeps us locked into our current patterns of behavior, where we play it safe and constantly second-guess the decisions we make.
A simple shift in perspective can solve this struggle of needing a purpose, and it will help us find the path we were meant to travel.
By reframing this nagging question of “What is my purpose?” we set ourselves free, and allow ourselves to feel confident in the decisions we make.
We also feel happier and more fulfilled in all areas of our lives.
When you drop this false need to know your purpose, you create a flow that opens you up to exactly what you are meant to be doing in your life.
The key is building strength in two areas: your vision and your presence.
When many of us feel stuck in the search for our purpose, it’s because we tend to create the false belief there is one single thing we are meant to be doing until the day we die.
This creates an incredible amount of pressure, and makes choosing a path extremely difficult.
It’s true we need to know where we are going in order to get there, but placing the entire weight of our future on deciding what our purpose is often clouds the vision we could create for our lives.
This pattern of thinking catapults us out of the present moment, making it nearly impossible to think and act in alignment with what we’re meant to be doing.
The key to understanding ourselves and our mission is turning our focus to our vision and our presence.
Creating a life of meaning and following that path is what will actually set you free.
When you shift the focus from what your “purpose” is to what is meaningful to you, you open yourself to a whole new world of possibility.
You most likely already have an idea of what a meaningful life is for yourself.
Now, you can expand upon your base ideas of what a meaningful life is, and craft a vision for what you want your life to look like.
Spend some time answering the following questions to paint the picture of the type of life you can see yourself living:
1. What do I want my future to look like practically?
This is the material world stuff and how you see yourself living.
Do you want to live in a tree in the middle of the woods and brush your teeth with pine cones, or do you want to live in a penthouse in Manhattan and light your cigars with $100 bills?
Get specific here.
This will help you to understand the income, living situation, geographic location and all things related to lifestyle and other practical aspects of your life.
2. What kind of person do I want to be?
This is how you want to feel in your life, and how you interact with others.
Maybe right now, your vacations consist of weekends in the Hamptons, but what you secretly desire to do is backpack through Mexico, and see all of the pyramids.
Do you want to be the life of the party?
Someone who stands his or her ground, instead of a people-pleaser?
Maybe you want to do CrossFit, but you have a monthly membership to a pilates studio.
Start to think about the type of person you want to feel like mentally, physically and socially.
3. What makes you feel calm?
I can't recommend enough the power of meditation, but it's so important to find any type of daily practice that helps you find a sense of peace.
If meditation doesn’t vibe with you, try out things like journaling, crafting, creating art, playing music or any practice that allows you to link into the present moment and focus on a specific action.
4. What do you actually like doing?
Most days, I’m practicing yoga, sitting in meditation, hiking, playing with herbs or trying to dress my dog up in pajamas.
Fortunately, I've been able to do most of these things in my life and work, since I've always been aware of what I enjoy focusing my energy on.
Start to notice the things you're naturally attracted to and enjoy doing, even if it's something you've never actually tried before.
5. Who are your people?
This is such a powerful question to answer.
Your community is essential to your growth and how you find your place in the world.
Maybe right now, you're hanging out at bars, but you want to hang out at drum circles.
Start to think about who you genuinely enjoy spending time with.
Think about how you want to feel, act and speak when you're around these people.
Think about where they hang out (and go there).
After completing this exercise, you’ll likely have a pretty good set of ideas about the general picture you want your life to look like.
You can always come back to these five areas and reimagine your path.
Nothing is finite, and the more you write, the easier it'll become to know where you're going.
Once you have a solid understanding of your vision, the most important thing you can do is build strength in your presence.
This is the actual key to calling in what you want in life, and traveling the path you were meant to follow.
Those five areas you wrote about are actually the foundation of an action plan you can start today.
Your purpose in life isn’t something that will be happening years from now; it’s actually something you can joyfully commit to every single day.
Focus on the things that excite you the most, and start implementing them right away.
Take an improv class, save up and book that trip to Machu Picchu you’ve always talked about.
Or take that online course, so you can finally start designing websites, instead of staying in that job you hate.
Think about what it is you’ve always said you wanted to do, and start doing it.
The more we follow our interests and desires, the more we are met with opportunities that will support us as we travel these paths.
You can eliminate any hesitation in your decision-making by focusing on how you intuitively feel about the situations presented to you.
If it feels like a “hell yes!” (even if it’s scary), then that’s the direction you should be going.
This practice makes it easier to follow your path on a daily basis.
Choosing the next right action, and surrounding yourself with the people and places you vibe with, will create a daily presence of joy in your life.
If you ever find yourself falling off balance or losing sight of yourself, you can return back to the vision you created for yourself, and tune back into the frequency of your truth.
Over time, these little actions you choose will create massive shifts in your life, leading you down the exact path you were meant to travel.
When you follow the path you're meant to take, and show up for yourself daily, your purpose will truly find you.