hat I have learnt about purpose over the years is that as much as it has it’s origin from before the world begun, it also gets it’s consciousness with “the called” after some time lapse. In other words, purpose is conceived not in our realm but in the Divine. From the time it’s conceived to the time we “show the pregnancy”, there is a lull that is punctuated by several things. So what I am saying is that as much as I have organized the process of purpose discovery into eight levels, I am aware that there is another level that precedes these eight.
This level is the most common level world-wide. Nearly all of us humans start at this level. Here, purpose is in it’s raw form. We do not know what it is, but it is there. Here we have what I call “hints” of purpose.
The unfortunate thing about this level though is that a very huge percentage of humanity never get out of it. We exist in the world doing the bare minimum just to survive and pay bills. In here, there is some semblance of fulfillment, but for the most part we are either discontent or unfulfilled, or both. It’s a tragedy when we exit this world without progressing to the next level of purpose pursuit. Formally, nobody trained us about purpose. The structures of development in society have increasingly forgotten about purpose. They have rather focused on survival, jobs, and a false significance that comes from accumulation of stuff. Talents, gifts and what we nave naturally been bequeathed with comes naturally plays second fiddle to this lifestyle. So we follow that path, but most of us cannot silence the daily disquiet in our souls that is beckoning us for meaning and for purpose.
The disquiet, the discontentment, the agony of lack of fulfillment are the navigational systems that are installed in us to push us to seek purpose. They are always there. I have called this in another article, “The Spark”. For some reason, as long as life still unfolds, when we know we are not satisfied and fulfilled, this spark keeps flickering in the distant benign. The problem is that we have learnt to tune it off. We have developed gadgets that take our time to dull the cry of purpose within us.
In fact, [ictt-tweet-inline]Most of the things that we allow to occupy our lives are subtly designed to keep us from answering the call of purpose.[/ictt-tweet-inline] These things might be as innocent as jobs, marriages, projects, adventure or any other thing that we engage in as we “do life”. However, it is in this place that some people who are still disquiet about what they are getting from life (whether they are “successful” or not), choose to start embarking on the process of purpose discovery.
“Once you are convinced that purpose will not find you, that you will have to go search for it, you are ready”
~ Jeff Goins #TheArtOfWork
This choice is not necessarily conscious, but when that choice is made, they have unconsciously entered into the first level of purpose discovery. Many people do not move into the first level of purpose discovery because collectively as a human race, we have tended to veer away from the subject and message of purpose. So people look at Purpose teachers and trainers as if they are some elevated teachers and gurus…but the thing is that we all have that capacity to operate in and on purpose. The message of purpose ought not to be strange. It ought to be normal…but it’s not.
If you are reading this and you do not have knowledge of your purpose, then you have an opportunity. [ictt-tweet-inline]The greatest mistake that you would make with purpose pursuit is to start seeking it outside of yourself.[/ictt-tweet-inline] Purpose pursuit is personal. I cannot put you in a purpose class and teach you purpose the same way with 30 or 40 other people. Purpose quest is of necessity lonely and narrow, one person at a time. In other words, [ictt-tweet-inline]Purpose is not taught, it is not designed, it is discovered at a personal level.[/ictt-tweet-inline] Could that explain why we don’t “teach” purpose in the traditional school system?
“Lines are everywhere! There are lines in parking lots to designate the parking spaces. There are lines drawn at intersections so that pedestrians know where to cross the street. There are little, but important, lines drawn on rulers to show units of measure. There are lines drawn on baseball diamonds, basketball courts, and football fields to help the players and referees know if the balls, and players, are in or out. Lines can be very important. They help us know where we stand. We are either on one side of the line or the other”.
[ictt-tweet-inline]The first level in purpose pursuit is to make a decision and the decision is to be a seeker and pursuant of purpose[/ictt-tweet-inline]. One must consciously decide that they want to know what their reason for being alive is. Interestingly, this decision is made because at the heart of our soul, we know that we did not just come to this earth to occupy space above the earth and then when we die, expire and occupy space beneath the earth. In our hearts of hearts, even in the very distant of our spirit acknowledgement, all of us know that there is something better “than this” in life.
“Awareness is what prepares us for the call. Before you know what your calling is, you must believe you are called to SOMETHING”
~ @JeffGoins #TheArtOfWork
This decision is what helps to filter out the noise and clutter of life and start bringing to your attention only things related to your purpose. Without the decision being made, you will not own the purpose even if it came…but the purpose will stay in the realm of noise anyway, until you decide that you want it to come forth.
The choice to decide to be a seeker must be done with the knowledge that the purpose pursuit is a journey and not a destination. You might not find your purpose today after deciding yesterday that you wanted to know it. [ictt-tweet-inline]The closest you can get after deciding to seek your purpose is the path to purpose, not purpose itself.[/ictt-tweet-inline] However, it is your decision that sets the ball rolling. Decision is the entry point, which itself is preceded by the heart of a seeker. Make no mistake about it, each heart alive is a seeking heart. The trick in our seeking is to be authentic, and not let the environment define what is inside of us. That is why I believe that each one of us has their own definition of success. In other words, we must decide what our success is going to look like. Our success is in direct reference to what our purpose and our meaning in life is. That is why this level of purpose discovery is absolutely important to begin with. So the question today to you is simple: When did you make a decision to walk the path of purpose? If you are not either deploying your purpose consciously or do not know what it is, chances are that you have not really made a decision to walk the path of purpose discovery.
There is something that we call “anchoring” when we talk about decisions. In other words, there is something you can do physically as you are making a decision to mark the importance of the decision. For example, someone that is making a decision not to keep engaging in a vice might decide to write it down and burn the paper figuratively. What this does is that it cements the decision you made in your psyche and it will forever be treated as an important event in your life. That is why we have cultural events such as circumcision in traditional African, Arabic and Jewish societies, weddings, engagements, house dedication and so on.
We shall pick up this train of thought in the next article.