I recently stumbled upon a website that claimed I could find my life’s purpose in 20 minutes. Being the consummate pessimist that I am when it comes to such bold proclamations of personal enlightenment, I read through the article with a critical eye. Link here if you want to see for yourself, but essentially, the premise is to write down over and over and over again on a blank sheet of paper what could be your life’s purposes…until you eventually write something down that makes you cry.
As I’m going through a bit of a personal/professional transition myself, I figured I would give it a shot. The worst that could happen is that I spend all night in frustrating bewilderment as I stare at a hefty Word document that…well…doesn’t make me want to cry. So I did it. And it actually worked!
I want to share with you what I came up with. I’m not really sure why, but I think it’s what led to me starting this website. Although that might be the bottle and a half of chardonnay talking. Here we go.
What is my life’s purpose?
To be a writer.
To make people feel better about themselves.
To live my life without the apprehension of self-critique.
To give more than I take.
To grow a family.
To work hard and create something that is my own.
To start a non-profit.
To be an architect.
To forever change my ‘job’ and transform what I do into what I love at the time.
To give my love to another.
To start something that will change the world forever.
To create something that helps peoeple.
To use what I’m good at to bring joy to people’s lives.
To design something that will change the world.
To live my life in a way that stays true to myself.
To discover myself.
To give other people the strength to find themselves, and to change the lives that they’ve grown to hate.
To connect with people and develop relationships more meaningful than money, material items or status.
To make music.
To use creativity as a tool to connect with people.
To bring something important into this world.
To pass on a legacy of doing good and being happy.
To be happy.
To make other people happy.
To bring joy where there is very little.
To help people forget about the shit that prevents us from truly being happy.
To write a book that gives people hope.
To create a blog that makes people happy.
To give back to the world what my parents have given me.
To give more than I take.
To be funny, insigtful, and endlessly refreshing.
To use humor and a creative platform to make life a little less shitty.
To live a life that I can respect at the end of the day.
To live a life that I can be fucking proud of at the end of the day.
To love what I do, and use that energy to feed the world.
To take the gifts that I have been given and translate them into something that helps people.
To not take life too seriously, even when it demands you to.
To be grateful for everything I have in my life.
To carve out a little part of the world where I make people’s lives better.
To have a job that feeds me and not drains me.
To have something that I can be proud of.
To create something. Something that helps people and feeds me. Something that will be my legacy.
To be a leader.
To be compassionate, humorous, and grateful.
To tell my story, however mundane it might be.
To use the connections I’ve made in my life.
To ask people for help.
To do something great, and not because it will make me rich or popular, but because it is what truly makes me happy.
To make life easier on people.
To use my limited knowledge I’ve gathered in this life and provide it with a powerful creative, funny, and sentimental force.
To not be afraid to take the biggest risks.
To provide for a family and create a legacy for myself that way.
To feel free and to not be scared.
To do something that allows people to be free and not be scared.
To learn something great, and share that revelation with the world.
To tell a profound story that will make people feel positively different about their own lives.
To just fucking do it. Stop fucking around and just fucking do it.
My purpose in life is to just fucking do it. Stop fucking around and just fucking do it.
Well, here goes nothing. True, it might seem odd that such a profanity laden, seemingly simplistic statement could bring a grown man to tears. And despite the fact that it is a blatant Nike rip off, it actually makes a lot of sense. I’ve long suffered from a scorching case of ‘fear of pulling the trigger’ in my life. However, that story is better saved for another day.
Give the exercise a try. You never know, you might actually learn something about yourself.