If you’re alive, there’s a purpose for your life. – Rick Warren
What do you want the epitaph on your tombstone to say when you die? Many would be satisfied, if not relieved, if their epitaph proclaimed, “I Survived.”
Others, perhaps you, want more out of life than just going through the motions, day after day, and simply surviving.
To live a life of purpose, and on purpose, empowers you to be whatever you want to be and to do whatever you want to do. When your life’s purpose is powered by passion, you are able to stay on course even when you experience obstacles and setbacks. Purpose is the engine that moves you forward in life; passion is the fuel for the engine.
There are five important fundamentals for living a life of purpose:
1. Purpose is a choice. In Rick Warren’s book The Purpose Driven Life, he states many people are often driven by resentment and anger, driven by fear, driven by materialism, and driven by the need for approval. These drivers are not nourishing, nor can they sustain a truly purpose driven life.
Instead, to live with purpose and passion is indeed a choice. You can choose if you want to succumb to the wants, needs and wishes of others, or choose, for yourself, what you want out of your life.
You get the choose what to do, who to do it with, and legacy you will leave when your time on this earth is over. In your quiet moments when you are alone with your thoughts and listen to what your inner wisdom is telling you, you will clearly hear your passion calling you to action. It’s your choice to respond.
2. Show your passion about your purpose. Enthusiasm and positive energy are contagious. Share your purpose and passion with others. Don’t be afraid you will be criticized for letting others know your hopes and dreams.
You never know when your optimism is just want someone else’s need to find hope for their life. Set the example; be the example – this is part of the responsibility of accepting a life of purpose and passion.
3. Be flexible. Keep an open mind as you live a life of passion. Life is not static; it changes everyday as people and circumstances change around you. Learn to adapt and to adjust to the ebb and flow of life.
Don’t allow your commitment to purpose to be a set of blinders that keeps you from seeing what’s changing around you. It’s normal and reasonable to expect to make adjustments on your journey. These adjustments are not failures, but rather a tweaking to ensure you continue to grow and mature into your purpose.
4. Help others find their passion, too. The expression “the more we give, the more we get” is the guiding principle here. Put your needs aside and don’t be concerned with what others can do for you. If your focus is to help them discover their life’s purpose, your life will automatically be enriched. This is just how it works.
When you focus on what you can do for someone else, without considering what you will get out of it, you will be rewarded in ways you never expected. Be there for others; find ways to fill others up with encouragement.
5. Choose to live with purpose, powered by passion, each day. Just as resolving to have a specific purpose for your life is a choice, so is choosing to life with purpose each day. By doing so, you are better able to navigate through the potholes life sometimes puts in front of us.
Allow your purpose to be your compass to help you navigate around these potholes. Be a person of choice and do not allow others to dictate conditions or limitations for you.