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What is the purpose of my life?

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If you struggle to understand your purpose or why you are here, you’re in good company.  This article was composed to help you answer, ‘what is the purpose of my life?’

Jaxxy, my keyword research software tells me that over 7,900 people ask Google every single month, ‘What is the purpose of life’, while over 12,000 people search, ‘What is the meaning of life?’. Every month. These numbers show just how much despondency flourishes in today’s world; and due to our ways of life, it’s understandable. Emotional illnesses like depression and anxiety are in pandemic proportion.

The environmental desperation we see, materialism, and extremes between the rich 1% and the working poor, leave all of us wondering, “Will my children and grandchildren live fulfilling lives? will they even have a world to grow up in? Will they grow up feeling as despondent as I am feeling right now?” These are the questions that haunt people.

Hopefully this article reminds us to do what we can do, appreciate what we have, go for what we want, and simply get the most out of life.


woman on mountain top

Being the best at…

People dream about being #1. We idolize the best singers, the best athletes, the richest business owners, and the most beautiful actors.

The ‘hard-knocks’ background stories of competitors in ‘Got Talent’ competitions remind the world that normal people can be champions, it’s about hope. We wish the best for someone, being the one in millions, congratulate them for winning the lottery. We strive to try to cheer these people on… to find these people inspiring; to live vicariously, wishing we were them, because they won, even though we didn’t.

The problem with putting hopes in the lottery is that it seems to be a literal admission and reminder that we aren’t happy with life as it stands. We pray to get what we want without work; and because we are depressed, we don’t bother working for it. We’ve given up trying; except to buy that lottery ticket.


Optimism vs. Pessimism.

I don’t buy lottery tickets. Not because I don’t believe i have as much chance as anyone else, but because the thought of a sudden huge windfall that I did not earn, simply doesn’t motivate me, or even appeal to me for that matter.

Don’t get me wrong, I’d like to have the money to buy a house of my own, a car, to complete and win in a singing competition, to not worry about being hungry.

At the far left of the spectrum, unbalanced pessimists believe you have no chance so why have hope for anything you wish for? At the far right of the spectrum, unbalanced optimists set themselves up for humiliation, because they try too hard to win at long shots, and often fail.

Allow me to share my views on this: I see beauty in the bitter-sweetness of life; the losses and the triumphs, the lows and the highs. Don’t get me wrong, I’d enjoy wealth, but if I didn’t earn it, I would worry more about losing it. I would also have not earned respect from my network. There is reason for my journey. So I will continue working hard on increasing knowledge of not only wealth but health and how to make more of a difference in the lives of other people, reminding myself that money is not the meaning of life. Achieving financial freedom will not end of my journey, or even be the highlight of my life. Money is no more than a tool. Making it the reason for my journey will result in me losing my motivation, because it’s simply not worth living for.

This is my kind of realism.


Nothing is permanent.

What comes, passes. The nature of our collective reality on this earth is that all things pass and are lost to time. Riches come and go, fame comes and goes, health comes and goes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. High achievers are not necessarily destined for happiness.

If you rely on reaching that peak for your happiness, you will be hit hard afterward. When you reach that metaphorical peak, the view is grand… but where do you go from there? The only way is down. Do you want to survive another valley? What if you were to lose everything you worked for?

Material wealth amplifies what we are. If we are already happy before we become rich, money increases our happiness. If we are miserable before money, more money will make us more miserable. Think about it… if we distrust people before we become rich, imagine if you do become rich… you will be constantly suspicious not knowing who your real friends are… there is always another valley to face.

We must try to learn from the past, but not dwell there. Plan for the future, but don’t dwell there either. Wherever you go, there you are.

Don’t worry about what bad may come, because it will pass. Don’t exalt in what good comes, because you are bound to lose it. Appreciate what you have, take care of it, and teach others to take care as well.


eagle-soaring-over-water

What lifts you?

True happiness can be taught, to those who care to listen. It is something we do. It has nothing to do with money.

Money is not security. Money can not bring someone you love back from death, or cure a terminal illness. The best security for a family is spiritual wealth. To provide spiritual wealth for one’s family means to equip them to survive, even thrive, in spite of any loss.

The ability to deal with change, the thirst for knowledge, a strong work ethic, resiliency, willingness to give help, willingness to accept help, network building skills… these are good examples of spiritual wealth.

I think the point of life is to learn how to be happy with your life in despite your level of accumulation of have material wealth.


But this post was about purpose! What is my purpose?

The previous parts of this article discuss the necessary background to better understand our purpose.

Straightly put, I believe the purpose of anyone’s life is learning to spend spiritual wealth well.

To earn and to increase:

  • A heart full of love for yourself and others.
  • Your appreciation of life through the eyes of others.
  • Evidence that you shared and used your knowledge.
  • The collective wealth of the world around you.
  • A network of appreciative hearts with fond memories of you.

The world is better for having you in it. If you do these things, your life has purpose.

The love you share with others, the knowledge of whether you left the world better or worse than you found it; these things you carry with you after you die, the same you leave behind.

Hope this helps,

Elaine Nicol

 


 

“We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not breaths;

In feelings, not in figures on a dial.

We should count time by heart-throbs. He most lives

Who thinks most—feels the noblest—acts the best.”

~ Philip James Bailey, Festus, 1839

 


 

“When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced. Live your life so that when you die, the world cries and you rejoice.” ~ Cherokee proverb

 


 

Powerfully inspiring books by a man driven to teach genius and personal mastery: Robin Sharma.

Access his podcasts and online courses here.


Another recommended book:

 


Affiliate Disclosure: The links in this post may be “affiliate links.” This means if you buy something through the link, I receive an affiliate commission, at no additional cost to you. I only recommend products or services I believe will add value to my readers. Read full affiliate disclosure here.


 

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32 thoughts on “What is the purpose of my life?”

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful article. I have long struggled about my purpose in life. I feel I failed to do anything long-term. Your closing statement really sounds something to me. I will try to appreciate my life further. Can I share your article to my friends? They also seem to not really enjoying their life. Thanks.

    Reply
    • I am grateful for your feedback. Please, yes, share with everyone. If this will help your friends I want them to read it. I wish you an abundance of joy and peace. ~ Elaine

      Reply
  2. The issue with placing trusts in the lottery is that it is by all accounts an exacting affirmation and update that we aren’t content with life the way things are. We appeal to get what we need without work; and in light of the fact that we are discouraged, we try not to work for it. We’ve quit any pretense of endeavoring; but to purchase that lottery ticket.

    Reply
    • Truth. Part of my main point is not even that we appeal to get what we need without work, but do we actually need it at all? Financial abundance is not a need but a desire, and we pray to receive without the sweat equity. When we get a “No” answer from the Universe, we wonder why God doesn’t answer our prayer the way we hope. ~ Elaine

      Reply
  3. I have to admit, you got through to me with the point you made about using the lottery as an escape from the harsh realities of the world.

    By the time I got to my late teens, I started succumbing to the pressures of life. The best way I believed I could get on top of my own affairs was to get a win, a very quick win. 

    Due to ignorance stemming from lack of experience made me take the gambling route. I’ll assume you already know how that went for me. I later realized that it was my desire to find meaning, to make sense of my existence that pushed me into the fast lane meanwhile ignoring the things that are really important.

    Thanks for sharing this, I’ll be on the lookout for more

    Reply
  4. Life is full of happiness, sadness, hope, and disappointment, and this is life. With goals and pursuits, life has a direction. It is said that true heroism is that when you see the truth of life, you still love life. Set a small goal for 2020. Hope to learn more on WA. Fighting!

    Reply
    • Awesome and inspiring! Keep fighting! I believe it is good to set large long term goals as well, just not to base our meaning on them. There is so much to learn in WA, make sure to study the live events a well, they are recorded and published in your dashboard menu. Fight as hard as you can, but take time for rest and family a well. I wish you much success! ~ Elaine

      Reply
  5. Many thanks to you first for giving us such a beautiful post. When I write an article for my personal work I need to do a keyword research and I use Jaxxy tools to get someone to recharge. This tool is a very popular tool for me and I can easily recharge the keywords for my article. With this Keyword Research Tool I can easily recharge very good keywords for my website.

    Reply
    • Next to the blogging community, use of Jaxxy is my favorite feature of Wealthy Affiliate. Please allow my question, but what do you mean by recharge? I can tell english is not your first language, that word ‘recharge’ does not really fit the context of what you are trying to say. Thanks for reading, ~ Elaine

      Reply
  6. Having a clearly defined purpose would be like giving you a predestined conclusion. In my personal experience, we’re here as when we go to the school. To prepare our soul for a better place.

    Life is what we made of it. But you need to decide. Whatever you choose to do with your life;  there will be some constants that will help you to feel happy everyday:

    – Sharing: happiness, sadness, joy… When good things get shared, they multiply; when bad things get shared, they get diluted.

    – Accepting: your past and it’s consequences need to be embraced to enable you to move forward.

    – Forgiveness: we need to forgive everyone around us (and some times ourselves) to get released of the extra weight that guilt causes.

    – Gratitude: be great full for everything you have, and anything you may not have; this will open your hands to receive more.

    – Move: human being is made to be moving and active, anything different would be against our nature. 

    If your life were coming with instructions, you’d ask for the freedom of writing them. Well, no need to ask, God has given you the option of defining your reasons to be alive every single day (use this freedom to be happy).

    Reply
    • Nelson Mandela spent 27 years in prison. He did not waste this time, he kept purpose close to his heart. He changed the world for so many people, and his account will always be recorded in history. We can by passing through ‘the valley of the shadow of death’, and have no fear, because we have spiritual wealth, we know we’ve done well. Juan, God bless you. ~ Elaine

      Reply
  7. Thank you so much for sharing such a beautiful register.I’ve been struggling for a long time with my purpose or goals but haven’t found a lasting solution. I feel like I have failed to do anything in the long run.I used Jaxxy tools and used these gold tools to do great keyword research for the web site.I appreciate your wonderful response.

    Reply
  8. This is a very profound article. I think in the same way as you do, not in terms off money or fame, but care for myself and family and friends. Off course u need money to live, but not live for the money. I feel so much better when I had a good night with friends, that is what makes me happy. None of the material stuff does. Saying : ‘just enjoy life’ is my motto, I know it’s not easy for everyone, but it is for me. Heading for walks in nature sure helps as well.

    Reply
    • Appreciating nature is part of our fundamental nature… sometimes I think society or materialism beats it out of us. We are fundamentally, animals, we are part of nature, and when I am away from nature for a long time I feel more stress and anxiety. I need to appreciate a good breath by the river or a sunrise. It really helps. Thanks for your comment – Elaine

      Reply
  9. Very well written elaine. Great subject. Some people take their lives for granted because they do not know their true inner worth. You explained it all perfectly here.
    Amanda

    Reply
    • I appreciate your kind feedback. And I agree, we must learn how to love ourselves before we can learn to truly love others. In my opinion everything before that is infatuation. Hugs, ~ Elaine

      Reply
  10. What a Great blog, very educational and inspirational. I love your kind of realism because that what I believe in as well.

    I believe that wealth is the state of mind, you can have all the money in the world in an instant but lose it all because of wrong mindset, lack of personal growth and money management skills

    I have learned that true success is to thrive to be significant and you can be significant by understanding just these four elements

    1. Know your life purpose
    2. Have a clear plan for your life
    3. Manage your time effectively and
    4. Enjoy life’s journey

    Thanks a lot for sharing and educating, do you know of any books that talk about life purpose?

    Reply
  11. Hello Elaine. Nice to see you share such an important post. This post is such a wonderful one and I must admit the fact that I had an amazing time reading through this article. A life without purpose and a good one for that matter is not worth living. Money truly does not give us happiness and cannot be a solution to every problem one faces. I remembered watching a video and I was made to understand that wealth is not money, but wealth is what we are left with if all our money is taken away from us. Wealth is skills, positive impacts, hope and everything good. A purposeful life is definitely one who makes great impact in his generation; a life well lived and a life whose footprints cannot be erased from the sand of times.

    Regards!

    Reply
  12. I had no idea that almost 20,000 people asked you the same question every month: what is the meaning of life? Your post really reminded me of who I am, what I should be grateful for and why I want the things I want. Also, I am glad to recognize in your post a very similar person like me. I don’t buy a lottery ticket either, I enjoy the fortune, but I like to acquire it myself, and I consider money a method, not a goal of my path.

    Reply
    • It is nice to know there are other people out there like me who don’t set their dreams on winning the lottery. What a poor goal, longing for what is beyond their control. These people have no faith in their abilities, and pray for an easy way to abundance. Why not spend that energy in making themselves better people and earning their riches while changing the world?

      Thank you for your warm feedback. I wish you abundant success. Elaine

      Reply
  13. I agree with you, the Number 1 syndrome is all over the place making many people ask the mind-boggling question: What is the purpose of my life? Unfortunately, today’s world is telling us about owning material things and being the most beautiful or the most successful.

    I will definitely buy your recommended book “The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari: A Fable About Fulfilling Your Dreams & Reaching Your Destiny”.

    Jordan.

    Reply
    • Truly, owning material things, being the most physically attractive, or being the most successful at making money, are poor purposes.

      People may under-value the importance of themselves or others. Truly, one person may be so important in the grand scheme of God’s purpose that just helping that one person to find the confidence in themselves to act may be a valiant contribution to humanity and to the Universe.

      Good choice for the book purchase. Robin Sharma has been a huge influence in my life. Thanks for your comments. – Elaine

      Reply
  14. Hi There, 

    I always admire people who tend to write posts about more personal topics.

    It helps people understand more about the meaning of life and what they can change to become a better person not only for others but most importantly for themselves. 

    The thing I enjoy most about this post is the amount of questions you provide us with which helps us to think about our lives more in depth and how fragile it really is. 

    Thank you so much for creating this post, hope to see more soon!! 

    Reply
    • Thank you for the kudos. I always write from a more personal point of view, because I can’t help but want to help people to recognize and fulfil their value. I think that is my meaning. It began in 2009 with a thought about “Being a beacon” as in to tend the light within ourselves so we can lead lost ships adrift in rough seas to safe harbour, metaphorically. Life is precious… showing people love can help them appreciate that.

      Reply
  15. Hi Elaine

    This is the question that has plagued many philosophers, thinkers and every man and woman has at one time or another. It is a question that has no clear cut answers and to be honest I believe there is no answer. I believe we all have a different mission in life, let us say destiny that we must accomplish before life is over. I also think that we should not think about it too much, as not knowing is the part of the journey of life. When we do not know we seek, when we know for certain we suppress and become arrogant. Not knowing is better for me.

    I thank you for writing this thought provocative article as it got me thinking. Do you in general think that people in general think about the purpose of life too much?

    Thanks

    Antonio

    Reply
    • Definitely. Like I said the purpose is in the journey itself, not necessarily the destination. If people focus on it too much they may become so self-absorbed that they lose sight of contributing to the grander scheme, only their own. Or, they may feel they are failing because they have not reached their destination in a “timely fashion”, lose sight of their meaning, and become despondent, feeling life is not worth living. 

      Not knowing is the zest of life, the challenge of continually improving and being the best person we can be, seeing where it all goes, the greatest adventure.

      Good question, thought provoking. Warmest wishes, Elaine.

      Reply
  16. I thought about this question very hard too especially after I suffered severe back pain from sciatica. Having work 6 days a week for the past 10 years or so has completely burned me out physically and mentally. Is the paycheck really worth it? What will I achieve at the end of the day? A long stay at the rehab center, more pain killers or surviving on government support when I could no longer work? I hate to think along those lines – that’s why I am planning a huge exit from my workplace and hope it will come to fruition mid or end of this year. 

    Reply
    • An exit from the workplace seems somewhat motivating… I suggest you start thinking about, What will you do with your blogging income 2 years from now, 5 years from now? What can you dream about when you are making $20,000 per month? What kind of difference for those you love can you make now that you are stress-free? That seems like purpose to me… 

      Reply

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