Have you ever tried to find your way home from a place you don’t know? It’s hard to plan to get somewhere if you don’t know where you are. When you have come to the point in your life where you have to choose to carry on, plodding along, accepting your hand, and embracing mediocrity OR to take the other fork in the road, the road less travelled, the answer for too many of us is to stay the course. We decide to walk on the side of caution, and convince ourselves that the tribe we are in, is the only tribe for us.
Society has done a bang up job of convincing us that we are of limited worth based on our breeding, our social rank, and our bank balance. In response to these gateways of acceptance, we state our purpose in life as the need to change our environment to suite who’s looking. We communicate and live so that we can be received into the halls of fame. These halls vary from being the most friended or followed Facebook or Twitter user amongst our friends, to being the most spoken of person in the “I love your home, car, and kids” club.
Where did this start?
There is probably a much wider, historical and academic answer to this, but the beginning of the industrial era is where I immediately go. Before the rise of industry we were all farmers, blacksmiths, carpenters, traders, or soldiers. Going back a step further we were all farmers, either not needing the above services or doing them ourselves. When we really look at the lives we lived back then, it is not hard to identify immediate purpose. We did what we did to survive, to thrive, and to grow our families. Our daily lives were directed and clear. You didn’t get in from the fields and say to yourself, “Why am I doing this?”
Lets fast-forward to the beginning of the industrial age. Small, specialist services which were manned by the son of a son who had been in the trade his entire life, gives way to factories that managed to churn out our necessities in their thousands. Along side our necessities, they managed to create on mass the luxuries that were once coveted. Life became easier, less tiresome, and indulgent.
The Industrial Age brought advancement, growth, and the next step in our social evolution. The job. The world up to this point had been based around our vocations, a strong feeling of suitability for a particular career or occupation. The rise of the job, took men who were born with purpose and sent them to work in a factory from 9 til 5, with the promise of free time, a packet of money enough to buy the luxuries needed to enjoy their free time, and the promise of opportunity to stand a foot above your fellow-man if you say and do the right things. The rise of the company man.
The world continues to evolve and innovate and grow. The factories get bigger and more capable. Businesses become multi-layered and the promise of promotion comes with higher pay, less time, but far more opportunities to have your fellow-man look at you and what you have and stand in awe. This circle continues for generation after generation, and the workforce grows and grows. Vocations decline as more and more workers are needed to every thinker and dreamer who manage to be heard amongst the noise of the new world. With the decline of vocations we see the decline of purpose.
The Purpose Black-Hole
I have been a worker for the majority of my short career, and I have met a fair share of workers so far, many of which are far older than me. I know that I have come to that cross-road and I lean on the side of the road less travelled as I can feel a need for purpose greater than a new car, a nice house with a nice mortgage, and a couple of holidays to destinations filled with the same people.
I enjoy my job, but I cannot help but think that there is something greater out there for me. I have learned that the distant beating drums is not my high blood pressure, but rather the distant calling of my purpose. We all have our own beat, playing in the far reaches of your heart, and maybe for you it IS what you do. The majority of us sadly, live most of our lives in the Purpose Black Hole.
“I was put on this earth to……”
Purpose can be described as the reason for which something is created. The reason why we were placed on this earth. If this is the case, as I believe it is, it means that we were made for this reason. Our bodies, minds, experiences, preferences, and dislikes have been engineered to achieving this goal and so if you are living for any other reason, you will feel uncomfortable, or unchallenged doing what you are doing.
If you can honestly answer this question with your current job role, then you need not carry on reading. If your answer to this question is “I don’t know” or “I think it is….” then I would like to share with you the steps I am taking to be clear on my purpose, and how to live it as soon as possible.
Take 5 minutes to answer it right now!
Please follow me so that you can see my next posts where I will look into;
- Who are you Today – Personal SWOT
- Defining your Purpose – Creating your Mission Statement
- Achieving your Mission – Creating Goals
- Getting the most of your Life – Setting & Managing Tasks
Share this if you feel it can do someone you know some good!