Observations About Life Purpose

Heather Markel, Writer, Speaker, Photographer, Traveler, Business Strategist

29 January 2019

There’s more to life than your life’s purpose.

I like to feel that there’s a purpose to my life. I especially like to feel like there’s a purpose to what I’m doing. While I’ve been back in NYC, I’ve been contemplating what that purpose is and came to realize a few important things about my purpose and “life purpose” in general. 

Standing in front of Angkor Wat.

Photograph by Heather Markel, Copyright 2019.

First, I believe we have more than one purpose. I’m certainly someone who, every so often, renews and changes. I don’t know if it’s because of growth, boredom or a combination but I do something for a few years and then I’m ready to do something else. It’s like I lose the connection to my purpose from several years ago and I’m ready to step into my new one.

“You can’t figure out your purpose with a deadline.”

Let me be honest. When I set out on this travel journey I really thought that it would take 3 to 6 months for me to figure out what the hell I wanted and what was next for me. You know what? Figuring out your purpose doesn’t happen with a deadline. After a year I’m only just stepping into my current purpose. It feels great. I have a direction. (Stay tuned for a huge website overhaul!) I have ideas. I have my deep connection to myself. That’s what was missing in my work before now.

Temple in Hanoi, Vietnam.

Photograph by Heather Markel

I wanted to feel that deep connection and sense of purpose in my work. The problem is I wasn’t sure how to get that feeling and I had no idea how to find it. So I decided, since nothing else I tried, (classes, therapy, long vacations, volunteering, leading community groups, etc etc) worked, I had to do something radically different. Nothing traditional lead me to find the true connection to the next work purpose of my life.

Saying that, I realize we have multiple purposes. We have a work purpose, a life purpose, a love purpose, a health purpose, an inspirational purpose….who knows what else! I find it a big relief that I have more than one purpose, that in fact I may have “multi purpi” in my life (I just coined that as the plural of purpose thank you.) It means there is not one big personal purpose I’m not in tune with and that my life is some never-ending quest to find it. Instead, I realize that I am, in fact, in touch with some of my purpose, I just want to fine-tune other parts of it. I’m learning it can take a long time to find your next purpose. The key is to be kind to yourself, be patient and don’t force it. Let it appear and drive you, instead of you trying to force it to come to you in your time-frame. And, be understanding that some day in the future, your purpose may shift and change – grow with it.

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