What’s Your Life’s Purpose?
In my latest Life Coach training module, we addressed this gigantic, arguably implausible question: What is your life’s purpose? We led each other through a tool that allowed us to move past our knee-jerk responses, to the bigger, deeper, authentically aligned answer.
I used to think my life’s purpose was to make people feel better. In some form, I believe it still is, with one small caveat: sometimes feeling better happens as a result of some serious shaking up, which in the moment, may not feel “better” at all, yet can lead to getting unstuck through tremendous growth, forward momentum, and, yes, ultimately Feeling Better.
On a not unrelated not, I recognize that I have spent much of my life keeping my views and values on potentially controversial topics to myself.
Because I didn’t want to ruffle any feathers. Because taking a stand when others might disagree made me extremely uncomfortable. Because God forbid I act or speak in a way that makes someone else uncomfortable. Because I have spent much of my life avoiding confrontation. Because if I expressed the way I really felt about so much of what exists socially, politically, and culturally, it would be messy and it would not be pretty, and people seem to like it better when things are pretty and unmessy. Because if I said it out loud, I might have to extricate myself from my cozy nest of complacency and actually take a stand.
Maybe some of you can relate.
What did all that get me? It got me the image of showing up for myself and others as a peaceful presence. It got me the ability to fly under the radar and not draw too much attention to myself. It got me off the hook. It got me being liked, mostly.
And what did it cost me? It cost me my voice, for a while. It cost me the opportunity to actively and readily promote and participate in ideas and causes and beliefs that I hold as valuable. It cost me an opening for connection and vulnerability. It cost me the opportunity to be bold and empowered, potentially inspiring others to stand for their own empowerment.
Quite a lot, it turns out.
And so, in service of authenticity, connection, empowerment, justice: I have been practicing showing up and speaking up, even when it may result in provoking discomfort for myself or others. As I white, educated, able-bodied, heteronormative person of relative means, I am given the privilege to speak or not speak or act on behalf of those with less socially granted power. I declare it my responsibility to take a stand for justice and human rights for all.
As it was revealed to me in the aforementioned coach training exercise: it’s why I’m here.
I am here to Transform, and to be transformed. Oxford defines transformation as: thorough or dramatic change… metamorphosis…a process by which an element in the underlying deep structure is converted.
It makes me squirmy and nervous and excited, which according to my mentors and coaches, apparently means I’m on to something.
Schedule some time with me, and we’ll discover your life purpose.