This year (2019), I’m determined to flourish and thrive; focusing all my energy on building the future I dream of instead of wasting it on maintaining old patterns, habits and beliefs from the past. It’s time that life comes into alignment, that I get back to being, well, me. And I believe that to thrive; we need to align ourselves with our purpose (or even a small snippet of it).
Even if you don’t know what it is yet, or only have a small inkling, do your best to walk boldly toward where your inner guidance leads you. From personal experience, I’ve realized that your intuition usually knows what’s best and denying it or not listening to it is not in your best interest.
I’ve thought (and worried) so much about what I “should” do with my life. When I lost my job, it was all I could think about. What should I do? It overwhelmed me. I had to stop and feel my way through it. I had to trust what my intuition was telling me.
I think purpose and what we “should” do with our lives scare us sometimes. You start believing that it’s a major life goal to find your purpose or passion ASAP, and if you don’t, you’re some kind of failure. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. Finding your purpose isn’t a destination.
I believe that purpose is the journey and in how you live your life each day.
Think about it — purpose is being. It’s how you act, think and feel each and every day that brings your potential into the world. When you’re aligned with how you want to feel each and every day, you are at your highest potential. Your greatest power is learning, doing, and being.
And that’s why it’s so important to reconnect with your why or whys. You can’t help but stray from the path if you don’t remain focused on why you do what you do or why you live life the way you do.
Our why is a guiding light for us. Especially when we feel lost, lonely, or out of alignment.
It’s a simple thing to do, reconnecting with our why, but it’s often something we neglect to check in on.
If you thought of yourself as a major corporation, you’d know that each and every company out there has a mission statement and company values, and they keep them front and centre in everything they do. So why don’t we do the same?
Do we feel we’re not enough or worthy of a mantra, mission statement or values?
I first came across the whole WHY movement years ago when watching Simon Sinek’s TEDx talk. I distinctly remember him using Apple as an example in the talk, remarking on how they’ve mastered human nature, understanding what people need and why they’re in business.
He believes that “your WHY is the one constant that will guide you toward fulfillment in your work and life.”
The first thing I ask myself is, why did you start this?
To reconnect, you have to go back to the beginning.
Why did you start _______? Fill in the blank with whatever you need to reconnect with. Why did you start decluttering? Why did you start simplifying life? Why did you start this new journey?
Me, I ask myself several versions of this question, which usually align with different areas of my life and work.
Why did I start this blog? Initially, it was to share my simple living and minimalism journey. But it has a much deeper meaning to me now; to inspire, educate and empower women to create the life they desire (no matter their age, BTW).
Why did I decide to follow my dreams? This one gets a witty response from my mind, like, well, why not?! And after more probing, it turns into this: to lead a fulfilling and meaningful life that’s true to who I am.
On occasion, things can get shaky, and I become disconnected from my why. But all it takes is a bit of self-reflection and self-love, and I’m usually back on track.
So if you feel like you’ve lost your why, ask yourself:
1. Why did you start on this journey or path? Why is it important to me?
If you’re feeling lost and overwhelmed, it might be time for self-reflection. It’s a powerful tool for understanding why certain thoughts might be plaguing us and how they make us feel.
2. How does it make you feel?
Consider exploring your why in words and journaling your thoughts, feelings and ideas around it. When we write things down, it strengthens the ideas in our brains and forces us to recall our ideas or visions.
3. Are you living in alignment?
Your why should make you feel connected and happy. If you’re having feelings of disconnect, you may have unknowingly strayed from your why or life values. When you’re working to reconnect with your WHY, icky feelings are an immediate red flag that something’s off.
If something is out of alignment, ask yourself what old habits, patterns, or beliefs can you change to get you feeling motivated and inspired again. It might be time to declutter your mind and home, set new intentions, and rediscover what your heart is longing for.
4. Are you thriving or surviving? Do you love yourself? Have you been practicing self-care?
Okay, that’s three questions in one, but they’re all related to our inner well-being. When we’re stuck in survival mode and not feeling our best, it’s hard to motivate ourselves toward our dreams.
Taking time to meditate, journal or enjoy a self-care activity will create space to tap into your clarity, vision, and confidence.
5. Are you trying to do too much or getting stuck with perfectionism?
Check-in with your to-do list and calendar. If you have too much on the go, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and focus on the overwhelm instead of your why.
We always feel as if our why requires a profound moment or has to be done at some special time. That’s not true. Have fun with it. Reconnect with your why whenever you feel like it. The more you do, the more it will become a part of you and become a beacon of hope when you need it.
Stay committed to your why. Journal it. Visualize it.
Do what I do when I’m having a “what’s my why” moment – head over to the adult swings at the park, be carefree and swing away. When I have existential moments, swings, walks in nature, and trips (even short ones to a local coffee shop) work wonders.