“You sensed that you should be following a different path, a more ambitious one, you felt that you were destined for other things but you had no idea how to achieve them and in your misery you began to hate everything around you.”Fyodor Dostoyevsky
The most common path in life is to get a traditional 9–5. But it’s not for everyone; and it makes those who aspire to other things feel trapped.
Although there exist other paths, they are rarely talked about. People don’t know where to look for answers and their family and friends can’t help them — because they don’t know the other paths either.
As a result, those who aspire to other things feel lost and hopeless; like they’re not living their purpose.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. Everyone deserves to live their most meaningful path in life.
So in this article, I will show you how to stop feeling lost and provide you with directions on how to live with purpose.
Getting Unstuck Through Guidance and Clarity
I was lost once. I didn’t know that to do with my life and I spiraled into a deep depression because of it. The way I got out, in part, was by learning from people way smarter than me.
In my despair, I started to look for answers online. And after encountering a lot of misinformation (it’s the internet after all), I was lucky enough to find some quality guidance.
Psychologists, motivational speakers and entrepreneurs, all encouraged me to go in the self-development direction.
And I did. Because I had no other choice. It was either that or remaining in the darkness of depression.
The self-development literature was helpful. It gave me greater clarity of my situation, and I learned about life and my place in the world. I slowly began to understand what I truly wanted: a better, more meaningful existence.
“Clarity is power. It produces positive emotions and a sense of order. A lack of clarity leads to chaos and frustration.”
And here are some methods that provides it:
- Reading quality information.
- Writing about your thoughts and emotions.
When I applied these methods myself, the chaos disappeared and order began to take place again. And with the increased order, I was able to specify my direction in life.
Specify Your Direction by Deciding to do Something Important
“Paths are made by walking.” — Franz Kafka
A purpose is an intentional pursuit towards something important. A goal.
That means if you want to live with purpose, you have to:
- Identify something important.
- Decide to pursue it for a while.
While it might be hard to identify what’s important, you don’t have to think in big terms. Not yet. Just identify something vaguely important; something that sparks a tiny bit of interest. That’s enough for now.
If you use the clarity-increasing methods above, they can help you identify what’s important. But don’t get hung up on finding the perfect thing, because it doesn’t exist.
If you’re lost, any direction is a good one.
Once you’ve identified something important, you must decide to pursue it. Eliminate all other options for a while and see how far you can go. Try going all in for two months and see what happens.
Don’t worry too much about your choice. You don’t have to succeed or get it right. You don’t have to move fast. And you can feel unsure and have no idea what you’re doing the whole time.
That’s ok. But through action, you’ll quickly learn what you want from life.
Benjamin Hardy, PhD, one of the most successful writer on Medium, argued for such an approach and said,
“What’s the worst that could happen, you waste a few weeks or months and learn a lot while doing it?”
Although you must decide on something for now, realize that your purpose can change over time.
As you continue to interact with the world, you’ll gain more clarity of what you want, and you might discover things that are way more important than the thing you chose today.
But don’t stay stuck. Begin an intentional pursuit. Because that’s how you live with purpose.
You move towards the important.
Here’s how to get unstuck and live with purpose:
- Increase your clarity.
- Identify something important.
- Decide to pursue it.
- Keep living intentionally
Decide to do something important today.
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