A sense of purpose is the driving force that motivates us toward working on our dreams and achieving life satisfaction. This is aligned with one’s life purpose, with a single difference being that life purpose is a single core purpose of your life, but a sense of purpose is different for each and every aspect of your life such as career, relationship, and other interests. It is essential to understand and work on refining your sense of purpose as it is completely personal to you, your interests, and your preferences, hence, it keeps you focussed on your individual goals no matter how small or big they are.
But, what helps in building a clear sense of purpose in individuals? An individual’s values and beliefs play a crucial role in building their sense of purpose. Hence, if a person has clear values and beliefs from a young age, then it’s relatively easier for them to have a clear sense of purpose. But a sense of purpose regarding multiple aspects develops throughout one’s life, making it an ongoing process.
So, How do you find a sense of purpose in life? Although it can be a long and never-ending process because it’s a part of understanding yourself and it changes as you change with time, a simple and effective start could be a 5-Why technique. It’s a technique used for building self-awareness that helps individuals to find the direction for their sense of purpose:
- Focuses on the need for a sense of purpose: Why do you think you want to find your sense of purpose in life? What makes you feel that you are missing a sense of purpose in the first place?
- Focuses on the importance of a sense of purpose: Why do you think it is important for you to find your sense of purpose? What specific event or situation makes you think that you need a clear sense of purpose?
- Focuses on how a sense of purpose affects your life: How can a sense of purpose improve your life?
- Focuses on what you can’t achieve without your sense of purpose: Why do you think you can’t achieve what you want without a sense of purpose?
- Focuses on why sense purpose will make you feel better: Why does having a sense of purpose make you feel good about yourself?
These questions not only help you to understand the significance of sense of purpose but also provide a direction for finding an improved sense of purpose. For example, if a person’s response to the importance of a sense of purpose is that they need to be happier at their job, then it can give direction to the individual that they need to try new things at work or new work altogether to move towards achieving their sense of purpose.
After working on the 5-why technique, work on identifying the factors that make you unique and content with life. To do this, make a large list of things that make you happy and jump out of your bed when you think about them in the morning. Then, slowly narrow down the list to identify a little sense of purpose in your life aspects. Remember, it’s okay to not have clarity the first time, the important thing is to keep seeking and working toward a better tomorrow.
Bonus tip: You can try to align your core values and beliefs with the responses of why’s and unique questions to give you a clearer sense of purpose. Therefore, try to keep asking yourself what your key values are? What you can’t compromise with? And what beliefs do you respect and align yourself with?
“Definiteness of purpose is the starting point of all achievement.”
-W. Clement Stone