Read Part 1 first. It will help you.
Mushrooms or Oak Trees
Living only for today and tomorrow and not considering your life as a whole is like growing mushrooms. They will be tasty today, but thrown away tomorrow. Growing mushrooms is an urgent business that needs high levels of control, hour by hour monitoring and fast delivery. Growing a forest of oaks is completely different. Oaks are grown for use by those in future generations. There is a delayed but much greater reward for growing them. Oak endures for literally centuries ahead. It gives lasting pleasure.
How do you want the legacy of your life to affect the people in future decades and generations?
What would it be like to give them the best example of how to live?
Who is watching you?
Primary and Secondary Purposes
Pretty much anything that has been designed and crafted has a “primary” purpose. It may also have a spectrum of secondary purposes – sometimes quite different from that for which it was originally made. A beer mat’s primary purpose is as a marketing tool. Its secondary purposes may include acting as a beer mat, as a ‘table toy’ (something to fiddle with) and as a table-leg extension – we put them under the table leg to prevent wobbling.
Although you may be able to quickly identify other purposes for your life, identifying your primary purpose brings greater inner strength, boldness and confidence. It can be very liberating as we decide “This is what I believe I was born for!”
The Power of Purpose
We sometimes identify behaviour as being done “on purpose’. By that we mean there was a clear agenda to that action, that the person (ourselves perhaps) was responding to an inner conceived plan. When you have a clear purpose that you know is ethical, unselfish and will always benefit those around you, you can live every day ‘on purpose’ with your thoughts and actions positively set to achieve that purpose. In so doing you experience the deep satisfaction of living a purposeful life.
Such a life is amazingly powerful, and because you have made sure that any action towards the fulfilment of your purpose will only benefit and not harm the world around you – your friends, work colleagues, family, etc.– you need have no fear of messing up.
NO fear of messing up?
Well, no. Here’s why. The only sense of purpose worth its salt is one that is indestructible. Unless it is (at least for me) I don’t want it. what is the point of living with a purpose that flops about in the breeze or gets blown away in the next gale? Your purpose needs to be like a flawless compass in the toughest storm, a purpose that is immune to the buffeting it is sure to get through the dark nights of life.
Such indestructible compasses do not come cheap. Nor can they possibly be material – either human material (a person, for example) nor non-human (mbecause material purposes are vulnerable.
I want something that will guide my behaviour even when I’m not looking, a ‘automatic’ compass that I can rely on to take me along the path towards (not necessarily to arrive at) my destination, even though I may be ill or very tired, walking through a tough time or distracted in some way. A purpose that will inspire me needs to be too big for me to have completed in my lifetime and inspiring enough for others to be caught up by it, in fact my purpose involves living out my ‘brand’ to the day I die. I want that to be compelling for me, and up to now it has been. (And I’ve written about it in my Mission Statement blog somewhere else on this site!)
If you want me, or one of our Powerchange coach team to be alongside you in these coming months as you figure out and create your Purpose, get in touch. We’re here to support you when you know you are ready to…