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Purpose: A Psychological Need

Updated: Aug 23, 2021

What is my purpose, what am I here to do?

The drive for meaning and purpose are imperative to our wellbeing and seems to be a constant evolving question throughout a persons life. How do we find meaning in this ever changing world? Purpose is never achieved but a journey, it comes and goes and changes with time. We cultivate it throughout our life span. The definition of purpose is the reason for which something exists. Why do I exist? What am I here to do?

Purpose is good for our psychological health because is gives us meaning and a focus for our mind. It helps to combat boredom and depression. It gives us a reason to get up in the morning. We spend less time in our minds and more time creating something meaningful. Purpose is also good for our self-esteem and self confidence. It feels good to achieve something or improve someone else's life in some way.

Purpose can come in many different forms and sizes. It can be the inherent drive to create something for the world or making a change to improve the lives of many. It can be a drive to create personal wealth or build a business. Purpose can come from altruistic expressions as well; like volunteering, being a good friend or simply gardening. All of these driving forces show up at different times in our lives and create meaning.

Research also shows that people who are living what they consider a meaningful life, will have longer and healthier lives. It creates a sense of being needed and bringing value to self and others.

What is your purpose?

1. You can ask yourself, "What brings me joy?" Make a list of things that you love to do. If it is difficult to answer, ask yourself, what is it that I do and loose track of time while doing it. Think of those times that you forget to eat or you look at the clock and you wonder how the time flew by. These are good indicators that you are feeling a sense of purpose.

2. Exploring your interests is a great way to better define what it is that will bring more meaning to your life. Sometimes we get caught up with the things that have to be done and don't make time for the things that you've always wanted to try. Take the leap and take that class that you've always been interested in. Learn how to get involved or simply start reading up on the interest. Dip a toe in, it's a great way to begin to dabble in something that could create more purpose in your life.

3. Think about and write down your values in life. Think about how you can live more closely to your value system. Are you staying in alignment with what you say you stand for? Make a list of how you can do so. This is sure to push you toward greater purpose when you are aligned with your values.

4. What is happening in the world that you would like to see changed? Is there an injustice that makes you feel something deeply? This is a sign that you have drive behind your feelings and action is not far behind. Think about how you can make a difference, get involved, research, meet people in the area of interest. You too will make a difference!

"You're always one decision away from a totally different life.” –Mark Batterson

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