Power of Purpose:  5 Steps to Finding Your Purpose and Living a Fulfilling Life. 

Step 1:  Choose to Believe in Yourself 

Is it possible to change what your heart desires

Power of Purpose

 Choosing to believe in yourself is easier said than done.  At least 85% of the US population struggles with self-esteem.  A lack of self-esteem is related to fear, anger, frustration, hurt, grief, and other destructive emotions.  

Most of us have spent little time developing mental skill sets that protect us from the crippling effects of poor self-esteem.  Overcoming our mental and emotional barriers is at least 80% of the battle and is the key to our success

One of the hardest things we can do is to identify and let go of false beliefs we have ourselves. Most of us believe in our hearts and minds that we can’t be whom we yearn to be. Many of us have felt that we are almost predestined to a life of failure or at best mediocrity.

To make a difference, you need to choose to believe in yourself.  

Gordon B. Hinckley was an international religious leader who deeply inspired millions of people.  He wrote: 

Believe in yourself. Believe in your capacity to do great and good things. Believe that no mountain is too high that you cannot climb it. Believe that no storm is too great that you cannot weather it. You are not destined to be a scrub. You are a child of God, of infinite capacity.
Believe that you can do it, whatever it is that you set your heart on.   Opportunities will unfold and open before you. The skies will clear when they have been dark with portent.

Abraham Lincoln – An Example.  The Power of Purpose.

What would have happened to our country if Abraham Lincoln hadn’t chosen to believe in himself?  

He chose to believe that he could become the architect and builder of his own happiness.  He never felt entitled.  

Abraham Lincoln had challenges.   He encountered tragedy early and throughout his life. He experienced great trials, failures, weaknesses, and overwhelming depression.  

His friends said he felt like committing suicide often.  

At the age of nine, he lost his mother. He and his eleven-year-old sister were left alone for months in the cabin while his father returned to Kentucky to find a new wife. The children had little to eat other than dried berries. A neighbor checked in on the children. They were terribly skinny, filthy, and the house was in terrible condition.

At 19, he lost his best friend and older sister, Sarah.  She has been more than a sister.  She was a mother who cared for him.  

Abraham fell in love with Ann Rutledge. She died of a fever – possibly typhoid. Her death was devastating. 

Later he lost a job, lost his son, couldn’t get into law school, failed in business, went bankrupt, lost his sweetheart, had a nervous breakdown and was in bed for six months, was defeated for the State Legislature, Congress, the U.S. Senate (twice), and the Vice President.  

Despite his failure and setbacks, Abraham chose to believe in himself and endure.  

President Lincoln became one of the greatest presidents in the United States.  His trials and failures prepared him to the core to be able to weather the storms ahead. He led the nation out of the Civil War – the most dangerous crisis our country has encountered. He helped the country to embrace higher values and begin the process of ridding itself of the evil sin of slavery.

Abraham Lincoln's sister

There are four important considerations to examine to help you discover your sweet spot and your purpose – so you make an optimal decision. 

Discover Your Sweet Spot and Passion

Power of purpose 

There are four important considerations to examine to help you discover your sweet spot and your purpose – so you make an optimal decision. 

  • Who do you want to become? 
  • What are your noble passions? 
  • What are your natural talents and strengths? 
  • Where are there needs?

When you find a niche that aligns with each of the four critical factors above—you are uncovering your ideal sweet spot and purpose.

Step 2:  Define Who You Want to Become

Power of purpose

As you realize that you can become the architect and builder of your own happiness, the most important question you can ask yourself is, “who do I want to become?

Your career and business should never define you; however, since you spend the prime of your life in your career, it does have a major impact. Ideally, you want to align your career and business with your purpose and vision. 

The key to determining who it is you want to become is to review your deepest yearnings. It is incredible how migratory animals are driven by yearning and instinct to brave daunting distances and challenging obstacles to return home. 

We hear true stories of lost dogs that somehow traveled thousands of miles to return home. How do these animals know where to go? What type of yearning, instincts, and inner compass do they have? We don’t fully understand it, but we know it exists and is powerful and true. You have a similar compass. 

A true yearning is an intense longing for something noble and great. It is an inner guidance system that beckons us towards good, much like a yearning that animals have to migrate or to return home. 

Most have felt but lost this powerful yearning because of fear, feeling they aren’t enough, others imposing their will, and because of mistakes. They allow self-limiting and false beliefs to smother out the flame. Sometimes we must use kindling, relight the fire, and slowly nurture it along. The yearnings can burn stronger than ever. 

Who do you yearn most in your soul to become?

Step 3:  Determine What Your Most Noble Passions Are  

One of the most important things you can do to make a real difference is to identify and focus on your noblest passions. 

You and I have an urge and need to find and live a life of meaning. Viktor Frankl lived in Nazi concentration camps. He was a surgeon and a psychiatrist. He believed that the young, strong, and healthy would be the ones who would survive the horrors of the camps. 

While in the camps, Viktor interviewed and helped his fellow prisoners. As he observed who stayed alive and who didn’t, it was not the young, strong, and healthy who endured as he had assumed. 

Those that survived shared a common strength. They all had something to live for. They had meaning in their life. This insight forever changed Viktor’s life.

The strength of purpose

Viktor wrote, “the men who walked through the huts comforting others; giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man, but one thing: the last of human freedoms—to choose one’s own attitude in any given set of circumstances—to choose one’s own way.”  

Frankl survived the incredible ordeals of the Nazi camps by dedicating himself to his purpose - helping other prisoners develop their sense of purpose and to avoid committing suicide (a common problem). 

Frankl held on to a vision of one day reuniting with his wife. He also envisioned standing in front of a classroom again - teaching the powerful lessons he was learning.

Like Victor Frankl, frequently those who make the most important contributions in the lives of people are those with deep empathy and who have suffered and overcame great pain in their lives.  

Noble passions stem from our deepest values and provide deep meaning. To be noble is to possess high moral principles and ideals. A passion is an intense emotion or enthusiasm for something. 

What are your most noble passions?

Step 4:  Uncover Your Talents and Turn Them into Strengths 

Power of purpose

Tom Rath wrote in StrengthFinder 2.0 that, "unfortunately, most of us have little sense of our talents and strengths, much less the ability to build our lives around them. Instead, guided by our parents, by our teachers, by our managers, and by psychology's fascination with pathology, we become experts in our weaknesses and spend our lives trying to repair these flaws while our strengths lie dormant and neglected.” 

To turn talents into strengths, you must invest in them. To invest, you must practice using them and add knowledge and skills to them. Gallup defines strength as “the ability to consistently provide near-perfect performance in a specific area.” 

Talent Questions

  • Yearning: What kind of activities are you naturally drawn to?
  • Satisfaction: What activities bring you intrinsic motivation? What activities do you genuinely enjoy? 
  • Rapid Learning: What activities do you seem to naturally pick up quickly? 
  • Glimpses of Excellence: During what activities have you had moments when you thought, “How did I do that?” 
  • Timelessness: What type of activities do you become so engrossed in that you lose track of time? 

Strength Questions

  • Which of your talents do you believe you’ve built into strengths?
  • How can you fully develop and leverage your talents so that you can grow and contribute more rapidly? 
  • What is your plan to do this?

Step 5. Identify Where There Are Needs

Where are there needs?

To make a living, you also need to focus on needs that are in the marketplace.  What position or business align with your sweet spot and will best provide you with the income to support you and your family?  

The Department of Labor has created excellent tools to help people learn about different careers and businesses and see what’s in demand. They provide the aids referred to below: 

  • Career profiles: This enables you to see details for up to 950 careers. You can learn what people do on the job, see how much they earn, review the employment outlook, and discover education and training needs. See career profiles
  • Career videos: These videos detail occupational tasks, work settings, and education requirements. See career videos
  • What’s hot: This information helps you to see what careers are growing and declining in your area. See what’s hot
  • Compare occupations: You can select two occupations at a time and compare salaries, skill requirements, and education. Compare occupations
  • Research industries: You can view the fastest-growing, declining, and highest-paying industries. Research industries

What occupations or businesses best align with your sweet spot?

Is there a strong need and demand?

Creating You Planner

Define & Make Your Vision a Reality

Power of purpose