Who's never been much for dabbling ~

Sunday, August 25, 2013

To Be On Purpose

We've heard all our life, "You did that on purpose!" and of course it's not meant to be a compliment but rather an indictment. 

Today we take "on purpose" off the list of indictments and place it by choice on our "To Do" list.  To make a decision with and on purpose is to create an expectation for our future, which also implies the effort it will take to accomplish our purpose. 

"Yes, I did that on purpose" can become our new motto, but it means commitment and we humans can be quite commitment-phobic.  Discovering and realizing our purpose can be a mysterious journey, but it doesn't have to be.  We all get plenty of "hits", messages or whatever you want to call those moments when you know you are meant to do something.  Sometimes we listen and often we ignore the calls.  Why?  Because the request may appear in-congruent with our current lifestyle - or? . . . scare us because it requires a commitment!

Not to worry.  We can change our minds.

Here's a place to start if you are lacking intuitive purpose messages:
  • When asked to commit to something, ask "What's the purpose?"  
  • Even a simple, "What for?" will help you define your next step.
  • Ask yourself these same questions and you will begin the culling process necessary to see your purpose path with increasing clarity.
Once you start asking yourself these questions, be prepared to recognize how often you spend time on activities:
  •  with no inherent purpose 
  • that apparently others understand the purpose but you do not
  • that there is a stated purpose, but it does not agree with you (jams up your values)
  • with a wandering or moving purpose, making it difficult to stay informed or clear about the point
  • with one stated purpose, which is NOT the actual purpose but rather a smoke screen (if it feels manipulative, it probably is)
  • others: _____________________ (feel free to fill in your own)
Also be prepared to recognize when you:
  •  feel energized by an idea or activity
  • resonate with the intended purpose (stated by yourself or another)
  • want to spend more time without regard for the effort or time involved
  • feel like you already know strangers you meet while engaged in a new project or activity
  • are compelled (or intrigued) to learn more
  • smile and laugh a lot or have an overall feeling of satisfaction
  • work hard or with fierce determination but it oddly doesn't feel like "work"
  • other: _____________________ (feel free to add your own)
Disclaimer: following a path of purpose may lead to feelings of passion (not the mating kind).  Your passion may initially feel uncomfortable because it can be out of your current comfort zone.  Proceed anyway - we created the current comfort zone and we can expand it when we choose to (just like adding a room to your house; it may be a mess for a bit and then provide you with more room for relaxation and enjoyment for years to come.)

Disclaimer #2: I am not endorsing the end of fun, because our purpose will include play, joy and love. However, many chase nothing but fun confusing it for purpose or passion.  Remember, without commitment, it's probably short-lived or inherently without a point and therefore it will not ultimately satisfy our desire for purpose in our lives.

I hope the days ahead bring you the joy of purpose and that you are overheard saying, "Oh yes, I did that on purpose!"