6 Questions That Will Help You Find Your Purpose
If you want to manifest the life that will make you happiest in the long term, it’s crucial to develop a sense of your true purpose. Taking a critical look at your underlying assumptions, beliefs and core values can help you discover how you want to develop as a person, and assist you in your attempts to figure out your life’s purpose.
These six questions will help to stimulate your imagination and challenge you to reevaluate things you previously took for granted. To get the most out of them, consider writing a paragraph about your response to each.
1. What five things do you spend the most time on, and what five things do you value the most?
Start by figuring out which five things you prioritize in everyday life—be honest about what you spend the most time doing. Now make a separate list of the five things that you care about the very most—common examples include particular relationships, hobbies, spiritual commitments and subjects you enjoy learning about.
Look at the two lists and see how much they overlap. If you can see that you don’t really spend much time on the five things you value the most, what can you do to change that so that your days are more in line with the things that you view as the most meaningful and enjoyable?
How could you change your approach to work, relationships or self-care in order to ensure your life is focused on your values?
2. What are your most significant gifts, and how can they be shared with others?
Think about the parts of yourself that you consider to be the most unique, and that evoke the most pride. Next, consider what they can offer other people—those you are close to, as well as those in your community and the wider world.
Say, for example, you have noted that your major gifts are arts and crafts, helping people solve their problems and seeing the funny side of any situation. How might you make these gifts a more salient part of your work and social life? And are there any new career paths (or forms of volunteer work) that would place these gifts front and center?
Try brainstorming a list of all different kinds of ideas, without censoring yourself, and then sort through it to see what appeals and what seems possible.
3. If you could change one aspect of the way you were raised, what would you change?
This might be an easy question if you had a particularly difficult upbringing. However, even if you enjoyed much of your early life, it’s highly likely that you can remember at least one thing that you feel had some kind of negative or challenging impact on your development.
When you identify such a thing, consider how it has influenced your adulthood. Has it helped or hindered you in finding your life’s meaning? If your upbringing has left you with limiting beliefs, how can you challenge them and live in a more purposeful way?
4. Who would you choose if you could spend a week in the body of someone else?
Think about who you would be for this week—what is this person like, what’s different about being them, and what do you like about it? Ask yourself why you have chosen this particular type of person. What might your choice might say about who you want to become, and about the type of life you might live if there was nothing to hold you back?
Consider what you could do to live more like this person whose body you’d like to inhabit for a week.
5. If you continued to live as you are now, what might be your biggest regret?
Although this question seems negative at first, the goal is actually to move you away from future regrets. Thinking about what you could regret can help you see where your greatest untapped sources of potential lie, and may assist you in connecting with desires you might suppress (typically due to fear of failing to succeed).
Are there things you would regret not saying, learning, giving up or changing? How could you start trying to prevent those regrets today?
6. What’s your most treasured memory?
Finally, think about your favorite memories and try to identify one that stands out as uniquely special. What makes it so important, and what does this tell you about your priorities and values?
How could you bring more of the experiences or feelings associated with this memory into your present life? Is there a career, type of relationship or way of being that would allow you to have such experiences on a regular basis? If so, perhaps this is your purpose—or at least part of your purpose.