by Ron Sukenick
He Who Conquers Others Is Strong; He Who Conquers Himself Is Mighty. –Lao Tzu
Your purpose is the foundation. Living life purposefully begins with identifying that which is uniquely rare to you. How do you find this rarity? Look back through your life. In your mind, play a movie of your most insightful moments. Look at the shadows long forgotten. What is the common theme that has been there all along?
Another way to get to purpose is to begin with a question in mind, and write as fast as you can for five minutes. Suspend thinking about the question. Simply pose it, and allow the words to flow. Just write what comes into your consciousness.
If nothing is coming, write down: nothing is coming. If what comes into consciousness is that this is a silly exercise, write down: this is a silly exercise. Carl Jung referred to this process as “stream of consciousness.” Trust the process, and see what comes.
Questions that have helped me and others include, “What is your gift to the world?” and “When you visualize looking back at your life, how do you want your life to have been lived?” Identify your own questions. Once you have completed this writing, go back and circle the key words. Your purpose will be revealed, not in the “doing” words, but in the “being” words.
I have found that purpose can often not be stated to others. Purpose is often so personal that it can only be lived. Consider your life purpose to be the foundation on which the rest of your life is built.
From Purpose To Intentions
Living life purposefully continues with the current intentions, or life visions, you have for your life. These intentions—and the goals, objectives, and action steps that stem from them—establish the direction for your family, health, career, and life accomplishments.
As you move toward your goals and objectives, consider whether they’re in line with your intentions. If they are, you have the edge in accomplishing what you intend. Your goals and objectives will help you identify, and then attract people and resources to help you.
The final stage of planning is identifying action steps, and assigning time frames for their completion. Taking action steps now, small and large, toward goals and objectives that may be months or years away will help you to move incrementally toward your goal.
Clarity Comes From Within
Have you ever reached a sense of calm and peace, that “still place within,” when only moments before you were filled with anxiety or uncertainty? How did you find that sense of peace when you were filled with angst? Probably, you took a step back, created a questioning pause, and reflected on a guiding principle for your life.
You may have asked yourself which decision most aligned with your life purpose and intentions. The answer comes quite quickly through the process of discernment, and so does a sense of calm, peace, and clarity.
Once you become clear about what you are aiming for in your personal and professional life, you then become clear about these three things: how to spend your time, which relationships are important to you, and what action and activity align to the intention and vision you have for your life. This focus guides you in developing relationships that align what you do with who you are.
The relationship within is learned in contemplation, and by action, in a world where people are continually discovering new ways of being, being innovative and willing to take risks, and continuously learning about themselves in relationship with others.
Learn as much about yourself as possible. Looking inward helps you find hidden gifts and motivations as well as unknown resistances, blocks, and “stuck” behaviors that may be holding you back. When you start within, you are better able to flow in the world with others.
You choose your outer life—how you will “show up” in life and respond to situations, and your overall outlook and world view. You make better career and relationship choices to support a purpose-filled life.
The Thinking Points
• Are you reflecting your purpose and intentions for your life through your daily life choices?
• Are you listening to what your inner self is telling you about a purposeful life?
• Are you increasing your awareness of how goals, objectives, and action steps align to a purposeful life?
• Are you identifying internal thoughts that get in the way of living the life you want for yourself?
• How are you embracing this magnificent journey that is your life?
Living life purposefully comes from knowing what is most important to you and possessing self-discipline as you make sound choices for your personal and professional life. This first strategy concerned identifying your purpose, which is the foundation of everything else; identifying intentions for yourself that reflect the whole of your life; plus planning and goal-setting to create the future you desire.
As you face the unpredictable future, this strategy and process will help you to stay on a purposeful course when the solutions are uncertain, and the answers are unknown.
Ron Sukenick is the Chief Relationship Officer and founder of the Relationship Strategies Institute, a training and Relationship development company that provides innovative, effective and relevant programs and systems for corporations, organizations, and associations. To learn more about the value of Relationship Development, visit his Web site at www.RelationshipStrategiesInstitute.com. You can reach Ron by phone at: 317-696-1367, or by email at: [email protected]