I’ve been talking to a lot of women lately to gather data for my women’s survey. It’s been great fun (there’s still time to participate. Click here to set up an appointment ). But what’s not been fun is hearing a few things that could be a disconcerting trend and I wanted to share them with you.
What I’m often hearing expressed is an underlying angst, discontentment, a lack of fulfillment, a searching for more. Some of you express guilt for feeling this way, since you have a ‘good’ job and stable life – “I’ve got no reason to feel this way.” Many are unable to put their finger on the exact cause or possible solution. When asked for words to describe it, you say “I just don’t know. Something’s missing.”
I can understand how we’ve come to this point. There’s been quite a push from well meaning people to get us to live more consciously and with purpose. Unfortunately, I don’t think we all know how to get the answers that we seek.
Having worked with hundreds of people on helping them clarify who they are, I can tell you that the ‘answer’ that you are seeking is different than it has been portrayed in the media. It’s much simpler, humbler and even quiet. Your purpose is not some all encompassing, single thing that can be lived out only one way. There is not ONE, big answer to what your purpose is. And, your purpose does not have to move mountains.
We are all beautiful, unique, complex mosaics. We are mixes of talents, personal values, experiences and passions. Our purpose in life is expressed through all of these things combined.
Let me give you an example from a woman I just met this week at the launch of Ellevate Philadelphia. She’s currently a banker, but worked previously in the non-profit arena. She said that she has realized that her purpose is…drum roll please!…. To put money in the hands of those who need it. Ok, did you feel the earth move? NO. Is there only one way that she could possibly fulfill this purpose? NO. First, she did this through her non-profit fund raising work. In her current position, she is able to approve loans for needy, startup businesses. Did you expect something more earth shattering, lofty, zen-like? Probably. The reality is that this is what a purpose looks like.
Here’s another example: My purpose is to keep learning tools that I can share with other people to improve and ease our earthly existence. It’s all about learning and sharing for me.