1. You’re not waking up excited in the morning. If you’re not excited (or at least enthusiastic) in the morning – then you’re most likely not living your highest purpose. If you’re waking up a couple of days each week with a monotonous feeling of having to do this again today – that’s probably a sign that you’re “off purpose.” When you’re Living On Purpose, you wake up excited in the morning because a personally exciting life awaits you.
“For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.” - Steve Jobs
2. You have really “high highs” and really “low lows.” If you can’t seem to break the phenomenon of feeling absolutely phenomenal for a few days, but then kind of crappy afterwords – then you’re most likely not living your highest purpose. If you can notice a pattern of thinking how amazing life is one week, and how shitty it is the next – that’s probably a sign that you’re “off purpose.” When you’re Living On Purpose, you still have the really high highs but you also have much higher lows (and your happiness becomes sustainable).
“I’d always believed that a life of quality, enjoyment, and wisdom were my human birthright and would be automatically bestowed upon me as time passed. I never suspected that I would have to learn how to live – that there were specific disciplines and ways of seeing the world I had to master before I could awaken to a simple, happy, uncomplicated life.” - Dan Millman
3. Your life isn’t entirely fulfilling you anymore. If despite knowing that you have SO much to be grateful for, deep inside there’s a feeling that something missing in your life- then you’re most likely not living your highest purpose. If you’re doing a lot of the things that society suggests are “right,” but you still feel that something is wrong – that’s probably a sign that you’re “off purpose.” When you’re Living On Purpose, you’re entirely fulfilled because you’re living a life engulfed in personal meaning.
“Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.” - Helen Keller
4. You’re surrounded by people who are bringing you down. If you find yourself surrounded by people who are bitching, nagging, criticizing, complaining, and condemning – then you’re most likely not living your highest purpose. If you don’t have a group of people in your life who’s qualities you admire – that’s probably a sign that you’re “off purpose.” When you’re Living On Purpose, you’re spending the majority of your time with people who inspire, empower, and encourage you to be a better person.
“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” - Jim Rohn
5. You’re ignoring your dreams because you’re scared to move on. If a couple times each month you start to fantasize about what you would do if you had more free time – then you’re most likely not living your highest purpose. If there are a ton of things you’d rather be doing with your life, but haven’t yet found a way to muster up the courage and tell your family and friends – that’s probably a sign that you’re “off purpose.” When you’re Living On Purpose, you’re spending your time doing the things that you love most in life (whether your family and friends understand/agree with your or not).
“If you deliberately plan on being less than you are capable of being, then I warn you that you’ll be unhappy for the rest of your life.” - Abraham Maslow
6. You’re working in a job that depletes you of energy. If the primary purpose of your job is to get a paycheck and there’s not much personal meaning in what you do – then you’re most likely not living your highest purpose. If you’re counting the days until the next three-day weekend or six-day vacation – that’s probably a sign that you’re “off purpose.” When you’re Living On Purpose, you don’t just have a job but you have a calling (one of the many differences between a “job” and a “calling” is that a job depletes you and a calling energizes you).
“The master of the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his education and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which; he simply pursues his vision of excellence in whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he is always doing both.” - Buddha
7. You feel stuck in the “rat race” but don’t know the next step. If you’re in a perpetual state of thinking that you’ll be “happier when” the next good thing happens and you’re not enjoying the journey – then you’re most likely not living your highest purpose. If you’re so focused on getting “there” that you’ve accepted being submerged in stress and anxiety as normal – that’s probably a sign that you’re “off purpose.” When you’re Living On Purpose, you’ve embraced that the priceless pleasure of life comes from enjoying the journey on your way to a destination deemed meaningful.
“For a master, the rewards gained along the way are fine, but they are not the main reason for the journey. Ultimately the master and the master’s path are one. And if the traveler is fortunate – that is, if the path is complex and profound enough – the destination is two miles farther away for every mile he or she travels.” - George Leonard
If any of the above resonated with you, you’re not alone. It wasn’t too long ago that I was the poster-child for embodying all 7 of these above mistakes (plus a dozen more). My life was the quintessential example of being “off purpose.” It’s precisely because I’ve felt that pain – and was able to escape it, find my purpose, and create an extraordinary life – that I’m so passionate about helping you do the same. I’m here for ya homey!
1. Make your motivations intrinsic:
Untold Truth: As privileged and lucky as we are, society sets us up for failure because it motivates us with extrinsic incentives like fame, wealthy, and beauty. Chasing these things are flashy and fun for a short time but ultimately unfulfilling. They’re like drinking salt-water when you’re thristy.
What To Do: To remove those “low low” feelings, focus on intrinsic incentives like relationships, contribution, and personal growth. Create a life around them and you’ll be super On Purpose.
“Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. Because it’s only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential.” - Barack Obama
2. Live in integrity with your values:
Untold Truth: If you want to find and live your purpose, you’re gonna need to know what you stand for. I’ve found that the best way to know what you stand for is to get clarity on what it is that you value. What’s important to you? What do you give a shit about? If you were running for the toilet and had no time to think, could you tell me what your top five values are without stopping and soiling yourself?
What To Do: To help find your values, questions thing. Try stuff out. Experiment. Do the opposite of what you were told. Step outside of the box. CRACK YOUR COMFORT ZONE! And then *reflect on what’s important to you.* (This worksheet will help.) Once you know what’s important to you, the more that you act in accordance with those values, the better you’re gonna feel about yourself.
3. Become comfortable with feeling uncomfortable:
Untold Truth: Our lives are limited within the confines of our “comfort zone.” When we get out of our comfort zone, and become uncomfortable, WE WIN LIFE! The cool thing about comfort zones is that when we step outta them, they grow! That’s right — by being momentarily uncomfortable, we own our fear, and in the future, the things that scared us aren’t so intimidating anymore. If you want to find your purpose, you’re probably going to have to do things that you’ve never done before – and in order to do them, you’re going to need to get outside of your comfort zone.
What To Do: Feel that discomfort, and despite it’s presence, go do what you need to do. The more you do that, the less uncomfortable you’ll feel in the future. Make it a game to become comfortable being uncomfortable and you’ll find your purpose much sooner.
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” -Nelson Mandela
4. Embark on the “Hero’s Journey.“
Untold Truth: This “Hero’s Journey” is the a common thread amongst all great characters (and stories) in life. Your soul is calling to you. It’s trying to tell you that you have a unique path that only you can take. Your mind can rationalize all sorts of award-winning reasons why you shouldn’t take the untraveled trail. But to deny that call from your soul is to deny yourself the life that you deserve to live. It’s the difference between being fully ALIVE and cruising aimlessly on auto-pilot all your life.
What To Do: In order to create an extraordinary life, you’re going to need to walk away from what you know. You’re going to have to face your fears, improve your conditioning, and create your own unique path. You’re going to feel scared, excited, and alive!
“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” -Anais Nin
5. Combine your strengths with your passions:
Untold Truth: People who are Living On Purpose are continuously using their strengths while doing work that matters to them on a daily basis.
What To Do: Science is suggesting that instead of focusing on your weaknesses, get them to the point when they won’t harm you, and then cultivate the crap outta your strengths. This is what will make you extraordinary. Then use your strengths to do things that make you excited and watch a sense of confidence and fulfillment appear within you (and if you mix service to other people in the mix, your purpose will appear before you know it!)
“I do not believe that you should devote overly much effort to correcting your weaknesses. Rather, I believe that the highest success in living and the deepest emotional satisfaction comes from building and using your signature strengths.” -Martin Seligman
6. Avoid the trap of validation:
Untold Truth: As a baby, we need love. So from a young age we create images of ourselves, pretending to be what we think other people want us to be. Then we project these images into our relationships and try our best to actually be the images. But of course, we can’t ever completely conform to someone else’s vision. And this is how inner conflict originates. When people start to feel a discrepancy between the image they’re projecting, and their authentic selves, MAJOR conflict arises within them.
What To Do: In order to find and live your purpose, you’re gonna need to become indifferent of other people’s opinions of you. This goes for both the good and the bad opinions of other people – they can both be used as forms of validation if unchecked. Here’s a counter-intuitive tidbit of wisdom: The less you look for other people’s approval, the more of it they’ll give to you.
- Jiddu Krishnamurti
7. Start Living On Purpose!
Untold Truth: If you want to be fulfilled in life, finding and living your purpose is not only something you can do, it’s something you must do. You can continue to live a boring life without sustained happiness, and you can pretend like you don’t know there’s more to life, but one day – maybe in a few months, or maybe in a few decades – you may wake up miserable and resenting yourself for not doing something about it when you had the chance.
What To Do: Start Living On Purpose! I want to make sure that you don’t get stuck living a life that’s not extraordinary so I’ve created a package called Living On Purpose. It aims to help you find, live, and rock your purpose in life! Start “Living on Purpose!”