Is It True That A Life of Purpose is Devoid of Fun?

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January 11, 2018
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January 15, 2018

Is It True That A Life of Purpose is Devoid of Fun?


hat is a very unique question that I came across in my very first speaking engagement in 2018. When a question like that is posed, it seems to me like two things are involved:

  1. Either, as a speaker, I sold the vision of purpose to be an ultimate serious and stone faced endeavor (is that wrong by the way?) or…
  2. The individual who asked this question must have been jostled from their life that is devoid of any semblance of purpose, vision and direction and now they see the possibility of losing their “fun” if they lived a life of purpose.

Nevertheless, this question is really worth answering. The moment someone asks that question, it brings to the fore the thought that “life purpose is an appendage”. In other words, to them it is an “addition to life.” It connotes that the “main life” is pursuit of happiness and fun, and the serious part of life purpose is an addition.

Some Questions about “Fun”

Well nothing can be further from the truth. Let us put “fun” in perspective. Is “fun” something we do…or the lifestyle we live? Selah. That means stop and think seriously about that question. What characterizes fun? On the 12th January 2018, I attended an event organized by the Innovation Village Kampala. The key speaker was Mr. Patrick Bitature one of the richest men in Africa.

As Patrick delved into a heartfelt admonition while answering questions from myriads of upcoming entrepreneurs, I caught him say the word “fun” more than three or four times. In two of the incidents that he equated fun to, that fun resulted in tremendous growth and great lessons to earn.

Patrick Bitature’s Fun Incidences

  • In one incident, he realized that a company he was trying to build in a neighboring country was hemorrhaging lots of money that resulted in a debt of One Million dollars (some years back). Patrick was faced with two prospects: either to close shop and head back to Uganda (strongly advised by his debtors); or to pay up the cash and continue doing business. He suggested the latter and entered a 5 year contract for repaying. Needless to say, that debt was repaid in one and half years. Patrick said that on the day he found out about the debt, he slept on the floor even though there was a bed in his hotel room. Fun. Growth. Expansion.
Patrick Bitature Inspiring the Youth at The Innovation Village Kampala
  • On another occassion, he obtained a tender to supply electricity. He was told Africans can’t do it. He dared the Government and even went to court. When he was given the chance, he realized that he had just bitten off more than he could chew. What do you think he did? He chewed! Patrick calls this fun
  • He also had interests in a West African country in the Telecom industry. Again, he realized that there was something fishy about his employees every time he went back to that country. He shut the business down and did an internal audit, only to realize that he was making losses through the system. Later on in this talk, Patrick commented that he had fun operating business in that country
  • On another occassion, Patrick brought WWF (now WWE) wrestlers to Kampala. The event was sold out at the Serena Hotel and they made good money. Then he decided to move the event to Nakivumbo Stadium for bigger numbers, only to lose business to the tune of more than $40,000 in one day. He called it fun!

Where does this fun come from?

You see, encouraging people to live a life of purpose does not mean that you approach life with serious business-like stance from dawn to dusk, Monday to Monday, January to January. The questioner’s description of fun is totally different from what I have in mind. In their estimation, fun is easy going, enjoyment, social events, movies, adventure and so on.

All my Coaching clients know that Lifestyle is a critical aspect of life. They know that in life, we must have a balance of things. We must balance aspects such as Finances, Business, Family, Spirituality, Mind, Body, Relationships and of course, Lifestyle. This balance ensures that you have fun everyday.

The Worst Approach to Fun

[ictt-tweet-inline]If you have a notion of “going somewhere to have fun” kind of thinking as your definition of fun, you are wrong. Fun ought to be deep within our hearts and spirits and we carry it wherever we go.[/ictt-tweet-inline] Take a look at the following guys:

Other Examples of People having fun in Life

  •  Tiger Woods loves to play golf. People pay him big money to play golf. Every time he plays, he learns more about playing better. He gets to practice and hang out with other golfers, all the while getting paid for it.
  • Anthony Robbins is a speaker and a trainer. He loves speaking and training. He has arranged his life so that people are constantly paying him large sums of money to do what he loves to do.

What’s Common?

So what is common about Patrick, Tiger and Tonny? All these people (and I could add to the list people like Oprah, Spielberg, Messi, Micheal Jackson, Michelangelo) are living their dreams. They are utilizing their God-given talents and gifts to the maximum and in the process, they are or were having fun! Let me ask you a question: Of what importance is going out to “club” or have fun and them come back on Monday with a hangover that dulls our senses and moves you away from your God-given purpose?

The Choice is Yours

You have to choose the kind of life you want. Do you want fun or do you want fulfilling? Can getting one robe you of the other? Can getting one also guarantee you the other? Here is what I know: Pursuing a life of purpose guarantees you fun in life and fulfillment. Pursuing fun alone robs you of your life purpose and in the end (when you can’t do nothing to change), you are filled with so much regrets. You realized how much time you wasted seeking fun and fulfillment only to miss both.

The Definition of Fun (Finally)

Having fun does not in any way insinuate that you will not have to work hard, pore through setbacks and disappointments. Far from it. [ictt-tweet-inline]Real fun in life is found in overcoming all the curve-balls, setbacks and disappointments that life throws at you, shaking them off and standing on them as you keep pursuing your purpose and deploying your potential.[/ictt-tweet-inline] Now that my friend, is the real fun.