The Top 3 Questions to Stay on Top of Your Purpose.

Purpose can take on a lot of meanings and you might live purposefully in different ways. Often, we think about purpose being “our calling”, or what we are meant to do.
You might be a little surprised then with these official definitions …

One definition is that Purpose is the reason for which something is done or created, or for which something exists.

As an action, purpose is to have as one’s intention or objective.

Notice that what you are “meant” to do is nowhere to be found in either of these, but of course, if that is what it means to you, that works!

I have always found an incredible amount of expectation in feeling the need to find what I was “meant” to do, and the truth is, we are well-suited to a wide variety of options. What might serve a great purpose for us at one point in time, may no longer serve us at another so I believe that we don’t need to pigeonhole ourselves into just one direction or path for life. Anything’s possible.

I see purpose as 3 Pillars and these are Intention, reason, and choice.

When I ask what being On Purpose means to the Professional Women that I coach, the consensus is that it means to live life intentionally, so that seems like the logical place to start. I agree that to be ON PURPOSE, we are being intentional about what we are doing and how we are doing it.

Intention in this case could also be called your focus, your aim, or your plan. It is what you plan to do to accomplish a task at hand – big or small – it is your road map.

A plan is always important to keep us moving in a direction without wandering off on a tangent for too long. It also makes for a good checkpoint to refer back to to make sure that you are staying on course.

So basically, your intention gives you a  direction.

Let’s move on to the next pillar and see how this relates. My favorite part of being ON PURPOSE is to understand WHY we are doing something, so the next pillar is REASON. Whether you are determined to follow your chosen path or getting ready to make a big change, what is the reason WHY this is important to you right now?

This reason speaks to your values, and more importantly, it makes sure that your values are guiding your decision-making, rather than the external validation or the “shoulds” and expectations that you receive from all the people around you.

Your Why is also your motivation. It keeps you excited about moving forward and striving toward your goal. It is that one thing that keeps you going on the hard days and when you are questioning everything. Your Why is your guiding light, and it might be an expression of your passion or just a rationale for your decision, so you know that you’ve made the right one.

Studies show that people are 87% more motivated when they know WHY they are doing something – when they have a REASON.

When our why is at odds with our values, we will feel conflicted, and that tells us that we haven’t quite landed on the right decision versus that we have to change our reason to suit that decision. One example of this is when people act purely with the motivation of money. Of course, we know, research has shown that money isn’t a good motivator.

Here’s an example…

Way back in what seems like my past life when I was in Marketing, making ends meet was my only driving force. I was offered a job with a pretty hefty paycheck but I knew that the agency had a reputation for having a poor workplace culture, to put it mildly. The money was appealing enough that I took the job, and from day one, I couldn’t find my place in that environment. Every one of my values was being compromised at every turn, and I definitely wasn’t motivated. I quickly learned that there was no amount of money that would be worth losing myself for one more day. There never is.

I didn’t have any other why except money, and money isn’t tied to our values so it doesn’t make for a reliable why. 

Most of the time, you are likely going to hear people define their purpose from a values-based perspective. Something like, I am MEANT to help people. I am quite sure that you won’t ever hear someone say “My calling is to make a million dollars”. 

The point is, when you are sure of your REASON, it’s easy to find the energy that keeps you motivated to stay focused and follow thru with your plan, which of course is your INTENTION.

Now, there is one last pillar I would like to explore, and that is from the perspective of CHOICE.

That can be as simple as choosing to be a professional or expert in your field, but it is also choosing the life you want.
Choosing to balance your life with your work so you are fulfilled by both.
Choosing how you want to show up in all aspects of your life, or how you don’t.
Choosing what to do more of…or less of.
Choosing to be unapologetically YOU.

There are a ton of choices that we get to make every day. Even deciding to do nothing is a choice. The important part to remember is that WE get to choose how we use our power of choice.

So to sum up the 3 Pillars of Purpose…

  • Your intention maps out your path forward
  • Your why gives you the energy to strive forward
  • Your choice gives you the will to take the next step forward

Now that we are clear on all the pillars of purpose, how do we know that we are being purposeful at all?

There are 3 important questions to ask yourself as a baseline check whenever you are unsure, when you’re making a big change in your life, or whenever you’re just ready to make a decision.

  1. Ask: What am I doing? To check your Intention/Focus
  2. Ask: Why am I doing this? To get to your Reason
  3. Ask: Who am I doing this for? To make sure that you are making the choice that is right for YOU

So, in the end, being ON PURPOSE carries so many options for us, and we get to decide multi-dimensionally from a stance of intention, reason, AND choice how we apply this in a way that best serves us at any moment in time.

I help women entrepreneurs face their money fears, build self-confidence, and see new possibilities in themselves so they can rediscover the love for their business and joy in their lives knowing they are financially independent and secure. Click the link below to learn more and book your FREE Coaching Consultation Call…

Written by
Holly Wallis, Founder & CoActive Coach
© 2023. All rights reserved.

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