For over 200,000 years, we’ve looked to the sky and the gods for answers.
We’ve studied the stars, accumulated the big bang, and even gone to the moon.
However, for all our efforts, we’re still left with the same existential question. That is: Why do I exist?
Really, it’s a fascinating question. It asks what it means to be human and if answered, should get to the core of how and why we live. However, in an interesting caveat, the answer can only be found within.
To quote the great philosopher, Carl Jung:
Indeed, it’s far easier to be told how to live than to decide how to live. However, your purpose is something you need to decide on your own.
And hence, Russian novelist, Fyodor Dostoyevsky has said, “The mystery of human existence lies not in just staying alive, but in finding something to live for.”
Indeed, without vision and purpose, people perish. It is the struggle — the search and drive for something more that gives life meaning. Without a future to strive for, people rot away quick.
Thus, the purpose of life is not to be happy, but instead, to see how far one can go. It’s to be innately curious and to explore your own personal limits.
How do I know? Just look around you; everything on this planet is either growing or dying. So, why think you’re any different?
Interestingly, Dr. Gordon Livingston has actually said that humans need three things to be happy:
- Something to do
- Someone to love
- Something to look forward to
Similarly, Viktor E. Frankl has said,
Hence, happiness is not a cause but an effect. It’s the effect of living in alignment. It’s what happens when you’re living your daily life with purpose and priority.
This article is intended to help you arrive at that point.
For example, most people mistakenly believe that passion is something they ought to actively seek out. That unless they’re intrinsically compelled by their work, then they can’t love what they do.
However, it’s not what you do that’s important. Instead, it’s what you do for others.
As Newport explains,
Indeed, rather than selfishly seeking a life you’re passionate about, you should be thinking about developing skills, products, and abilities that benefit the lives of others.
When you go beyond yourself, your skills and abilities are not just an individual sum of parts, instead, they become a part of a greater whole, and it is this that gives life meaning.
When begin to see your work have an effect on the lives of others, your confidence grows. As your confidence grows, you begin to deeply enjoy what you’re doing — you become more engaged with it, and eventually, you start to see your work as a “calling” or “mission.”
And hence why so many people who work in professions that have such a profound effect on other people’s lives, like doctors, psychiatrists, or teachers, for example, love what they do.
Also, why Cal Newport has said, “What you do for a living is much less important than how you do it.”
Or put more simply: Your passion is not something you need to “find” or “follow,” instead, your passion follows you. It’s a result of your mindset and behavior. Not the other way around.
In order to live this reality, however, you must realize that your life is about so much more than just yourself. It’s about giving back. It’s about pouring your all into it. It’s about finding something to love.
Which actually leads to the next point:
However, a little less talked about is the fact that love is not a noun but a verb. If you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.
And sadly, this happens all too often. We take our relationships for granted. We allow the busyness of life to take over and stop investing in the relationship.
However, if you truly love someone, you’ll show it. You’ll stop being self-centered and be who you need to be for that person
This isn’t necessarily just romantic relationships, but all relationships. Love transforms not just the receiver, but also the giver. So, why wouldn’t you?
Although no matter how powerful of a force love is, just having someone to love isn’t enough. You still have to live out your own dreams and desires.
As Grant Cardone has said:
Which takes us to the next point:
Hence, you need a vision. You need something to look forward to. You need a goal in which are you exerting conscious and daily effort.
Keep in mind that it is the vision, not the goal that brings meaning. Hence, once you hit one, you need another. These are something you should never stop doing.
As Dan Sullivan has said,
However, not get too far ahead, what is your vision now?
- Where do you want to go?
- Who do you want to be?
- What do you want to do?
- Who do you want to do it with?
- What does your ideal day look like?
It’s powerful to not to think of these in terms of where you are now, but instead, where you want to be. See, many people become limited by the goals they can see in their history.
However, you shouldn’t let your current circumstances stop you from creating something far more powerful.
As Hal Elrod said,
Indeed, you are both the designer and the creator of your life experience. Each must be bold and powerful. So, where do you intend to go?