Who are you?
With this question I am not asking what you do for a living, nor am I wondering if you’re a mother, father, husband, wife, or a great friend. These are merely roles you play. We all play several roles in the course of a day, but none of these things define who you are.
You may be thinking, “Okay, so what defines who I am?” Simple. Your Life’s Purpose! You’ll see this phrase often, especially if you read much in the area of self-improvement, but what does it mean? What does living one’s “life purpose” mean? You may find varying definitions for this but here is the essence of it’s meaning: Every human being possesses certain gifts, skills, and talents that they can use to better the world, and the people in it. Every human being will use these gifts, skills and talents in ways that no one else can. This is why each person’s contribution is vitally important!
“It’s not enough to have lived. We should be determined to live for something. May I suggest that it be creating joy for others, sharing what we have for the betterment of personkind, bringing hope to the lost and love to the lonely.” -Leo Buscaglia
What Is Your Life Purpose?
Think of “Life’s Purpose” as meaning the particular set of skills, gifts and talents that you possess. If you want to discover what your purpose is, you have to look beyond the roles (father, maid, scientist, truck driver, employee etc) you play each day. The best way I know to explain this is to share from personal experience.
In my life I have played many roles. I have been a construction worker, mechanic, musician, salesman and I am a father. These are things I have done, or became at one point or another, but none of these define who Keith is as a human being. They do not define how I think, feel, treat other people or view life. Nor were any of them the motivating force behind my actions. Many other people, much different than me, have played these same roles, but in very different ways. What defined Keith was the way in which I helped, or influenced, those I came into contact with.
What helped me to “discover my purpose” is that, over time, I began to recognize certain things about each “role” that really got me excited and made me feel like I was making a difference. I began to see that I experienced the greatest sense of purpose and fulfillment when I was supporting another in some way. One of my strongest gifts is that of encouragement. Another is the ability to take a life principle and apply it to situations quickly. Still another is reconciliation. In these ways I have been able to help many people. This is my “life purpose”, or the particular set of gifts, skills and talents that enable me to support, encourage or guide those who need it. In this way I change the world around me.
My “life purpose” I take into every situation and I do it without even thinking about it. The role may change, and it may change often, but my mission remains constant. The many roles I play are simply a medium that I use to express my purpose. For example: A guitar is a medium of expression. I can use a guitar to express the music that is inside of me and so can you. The music that I play will likely differ greatly from yours. The difference isn’t the guitar; it’s just a tool. The difference is the person playing it!
Many people, of whom I was one, live their lives every day without a thought as to what they can do to better the world around them. It’s so easy to get caught up in daily habits, such as a job, and never use our unique gifts. When you are intimately aware of the gifts, skills, and talents that you possess, everything changes. Every day becomes important and so will every person you meet. Every day becomes a joy and is filled with meaning. It will permeate every area of your life and it won’t matter what role you’re playing. When your role changes you’ll find another way to use your gifts. You can live them out in a million different ways! The medium you use to express them isn’t all that important; it’s what you express that matters.
What is your “life’s purpose”? In what ways are you living it?
Editors Note: This a guest Article by my dear friend Keith from straightupliving.com. Stay updated to his blog and inspiring writing by subscribing to his feed or following him on twitter.
Thank you Keith for being the inspiration that you are and for sharing some of your lovely writing here on Positive Provocations.
With Immense Love and Gratitude,
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14 thoughts on “Your Life On Purpose”
Thank you for opening your space to Keith..he is so wise and heart centered..as are you my beauty filled friend:)
I *love* this post..this is the essence of who I am..my being sees your being and loves you for who you are in this moment as you are, not as you wish to be or present yourself to me.. I reflect to you the best of you because that is what I choose to ‘see’..
So, that is who I am..a butterflies and glitter girl who embraces the moment as it is, who opens my heart fully to life and all that is in it, who embraces love peace joy creativity passion delight and shares generously with All so that each person may live the life of their dreams– with ease…
I stand for peace, love, and joy and all in my life reflects that…
Thank you for your wonderfully kind words. I also wish to thank you for sharing the way in which you live your life…by being who you are. You are impacting the world and those around you by living out your purpose, sharing your loving heart with any you come into contact with, regardless of the method of that contact.
It is so good to know that you are out there and are being the sort of influence that heals. Thank you! 🙂
Great post Keith! I’ve thought a lot about my life’s purpose this year. It’s amazing the synchronicity that comes into your life when you’re living your purpose, too.
You are so right! Doesn’t it just make your jaw drop when things just “line up” perfectly sometimes?! And also the opportunities that seemingly just appear out of nowhere! These are daily occurrences for one who has recognized and is living out their purpose.
Thank you for your compliment and especially for sharing your thoughts.
Oh my gosh, I LOVED THIS! Keith, this line (and the whole paragraph actually) made me giddy because of how strongly I resonated with it: “…over time, I began to recognize certain things about each role that really got me excited and made me feel like I was making a difference.”
Like you, I’ve played many different roles in life and been many different things. When I’m feeling down (or have those dark periods of rest and recalibration), I question “What is my life’s purpose?” But the way you said it in this post – well that’s just IT! That’s how I feel about my life and my mission. There isn’t just one label that sums up who I am or how I make a difference, and that’s probably good (because I get bored and like to switch things up).
I’m grateful for your insight and love, which pours through your words. I make a difference simply by being alive, and doing those things which bring me to life. (smile) Makes my heart happy to type that.
Thank you, and thanks to beautiful Zeenat for opening up her space to you!
I am so happy that this post strummed your heart strings! As you say, you can’t label someone by whatever activity they may be engaged in, rather it is the way in which they “engage” it, the way they interact with others and so on. I know you know all of this and I am grateful that you are changing the world around you!!
Thank you Megan for sharing your thoughts here.
I love this! It reminds me of one time, when someone asked me what I do. I responded with “make people happy”. We are not our professions, our roles we take on in our family, etc. We are something much deeper. And when we connect with that, when we really connect – we touch upon what our life purpose is. The thing too – when we make this connection – we live our lives with more meaning. And that is truly a great place to be!
Great to see you here Keith!
Zeenat, thank you for having Keith. You both are amazing love and light in our world!
I love the response you used! May I “borrow” that? I’d love to say that what I do is “make people happy”! Awesome! I know you’re out there doing just that too and I am so grateful for you.
You nailed it when you said our lives become more meaningful when we live our purpose. It helps to bring meaning to anything, no matter if it’s a small thing or large!
Thank you so much Lance!
Great post. You have nailed a difficult concept so easily and clearly. So often we have a gift but we don’t realize we possess it. Thank u for a clear post on life purpose..Am curious to know, once u discovered that you encouraged people, how did this translate into real life work?
Excellent read, thank you. Isn’t it funny how we default to asking a new person “What do you do?” What if we all said, “Who are you?” instead.
We might forge more meaningful relationships.
Thank you for your compliment!
I LOVE what you proposed in your comment and I am going to incorporate the spirit of that into my life! I will find out about the person and not just about whatever it is they do! Thanks!
Thank you for your kind words. 🙂
Discovering that encouragement was a strength, it changed the way I view every day life. I take this knowledge with me every day and apply it to each and every situation I encounter. Encouragement is more than just a nice word offered during a tough time. It is inspiring hope and confidence in someone and it is supporting another in whatever it is they are doing
This is how it is a life work for me. The present moment is always the most important and in the present moment is where and when “my work” takes place. It is often said that it is the little things that actually make up life, so I pay attention to those “little things” and those seemingly “small” moments and work to maintain an awareness of how I can be or service to whoever I am interacting with. Sometimes it may involve great effort, time and some expense, other times it can be as simple as a smile to a stranger I pass on the street. 🙂
I appreciate you sharing your thoughts and for asking such an insightful question!
That was such a wise and useful answer to my question. Thank u for taking the time to explain it so well. The reason I asked is that I’ve recently discovered I ‘nurture’ and ‘encourage’ people too. Yet don’t know how to incorporate this into a career or work. But I realize it doesn’t have to be. I just have to do my bit in the ‘now’ and the rest of it will unfold, God willing.
Take care and god bless
Dear Keith, This is very moving, and on a deep level. Thank you for sharing such grace.
I LOVE these lines: “These are things I have done, or became at one point or another, but none of these define who Keith is as a human being. They do not define how I think, feel, treat other people or view life.”
There are soooo many things I’ve done in my life. I could make a list a mile long, but those things are not who I am. The older I become the less there is that defines who I am. In most cases I have few beliefs but love, no religion but love, and little purpose but love. Sure there are things I enjoy doing (in fact I love doing sooooo many things ; I just love Life, period), but the thing that really fills me up and makes life an off the charts miracle and blessing is being able to love, everywhere I go. It’s a good thing I’m not very shy because I love to reach out to Life all around me.
Thank you for sharing Keith, I really enjoyed your genuine heart,
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