How to Find Your Purpose | Part 2: Be Open to Meaningful Work

by Kate Williams

In the first part of this how to find your purpose blog series, you learned that there is a difference between living to earn and earning a living. Today we’re going to dive into being open to possibilities in order to create meaningful work.

If you haven’t read part 1, you should take a few minutes to read it. The post will get you in the right frame of mind for completing the action steps in this post.

Be Open to the Possibilities

Now on to part 2. At this point, you should have some ideas about what kind of work would make you happy and what you want. You should be focusing on what you want versus what you have. And you should not be wrapped up in the details or whether it’s realistic. The need for meaningful work comes from the soul.

In this step to find your purpose, you are going to be open to pursuing the activities on your list from step 1. Don’t get caught up in the what-if games. What if this blows up in my face? Will people laugh at me?

Tell the what ifs and self-doubts to take a hike.

a sign that says ideas are brewing

Take Baby Steps to Your Career Goal

You want to take baby steps toward finding meaningful work. This means being open to trying new things and meeting new people. You are not handing in your resignation or uprooting the family to live in a hut in the Peruvian jungle. You are merely making a focused effort to be open to pursuing the work that makes you happy and has meaning for you.

An open-to-the-possibilities mindset can help you find your purpose and you can begin to incorporate your list of things that make you happy into the job you currently hate, um have. This mindset, if practiced consistently, can bring new opportunities into your life.

A Baby Step Example

Let’s say one of the things you hate about your job is that you are isolated in a cube for most of the day. Your enjoyable activities list includes having lunch with friends. You love to connect with people. Working in a beige jail cell disconnects you from people.

A baby step to make the job you have more meaningful is to invite 4-5 coworkers to lunch every Friday. Tell the people attending to invite an additional person and you could call it a networking event.

A Baby Step That Started a Name Brand

Kevin Plank had an okay run as a college football player, but while at the University of Maryland, he made a shift in his thinking and launched what would become Under Amour. Plank acknowledged his ability to hustle and he wasn’t talking about speed. Instead of focusing on the football field, he delighted in trying to find ways to make money.

He came up with a shirt that would wick moisture and leveraged his network of college athletes and coaches to sell the product. When Plank’s coach told him to focus on playing football, he could have dismissed his want to make money as just a dream. Instead, Plank listened to what his soul was telling him He trusted his ability to build a business.

How can you develop your likes to find meaningful work?

Action Steps

1. Be open to being brutally honest.

 To find your purpose you must speak your truths clearly and clear the deck for new adventures. This means saying no to things you might have always agreed to. Resist the temptation to say what you think people want to hear. You might have to prune your schedule, declutter your home or begin a meditation practice to tune into to those truths. Your truth will set you free if you simply let it.

2. Be open to getting support.

 You must also keep in mind that you are not an isolated being. You need the support of family, friends and positive-minded social circle that will help you reach your goals. Note: It may be time to let go of toxic, draining relationships, or to set boundaries with people who could distract you and detract from your passion. Unfriending is okay. When you are true to who you are and what you want, you build your confidence to follow the “crazy” ideas on your list.

3. Give yourself happy time.

Happy time has one purpose —to focus on what makes you happy. This time, however, is not for paying the bills or to grocery shop. No, this time is soul time. Setting time aside to do is helpful for people who are not sure what they enjoy doing. This time allows you to find out what you love to do. What an awesome gift for yourself.

Plan a lunch date with yourself, get a massage, go on a road trip, dance around the living room to some 80s pop, have a snow cone, watch a movie in bed — the list is endless. The point is to rejuvenate yourself and explore that feeling of joy that you have been missing for so long. No guilt is allowed.

Finding your purpose is an endless adventure. Start to open yourself to new possibilities by connecting to who you are. What are your truths? Who is supportive of you no matter how crazy your ideas are? What can you do to add some happy to your life?

Schedule at least 1 hour of happy time a week. This one is non-negotiable. You can do it. You totally deserve it.
.Next up, you’ll learn the importance of embracing your strengths and values.

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