How Will I Know My Purpose?
Purpose calls us when we least expect it. In fact, it comes when we are busy doing something else like raising a family, making a living – little things like that.
It’s also true that we don’t recognize it when it arrives on our doorstep.
Calls usually arrive through a sudden insight, an offhand comment by a friend about something you have taken for granted for years, or an idea that arrives at after a long time working on something at a deep level.
We may think of calls as those glorious lightning bolts that strike one with all the knowledge, funding, and motivation to move forward to answer it. We think the path will appear magically and all we have to do is wait until everything becomes a bit clearer.
It’s entirely possible that some calls do come like that, but not many. It’s like the guy being interviewed who says: “I owe my overnight success to 30 years of blistering hard work.”
How to Recognize a Call
Your call or your purpose will find you but realize it will be disguised as something you might not feel equipped to do, think you have enough courage to put yourself and your ideas out into the world, or have enough money to execute something that has the possibility of being grand.
Once it arrives, be assured that it will not leave you alone. It will nag, nudge, or pester you coming up in different ways, through different people and events over and over until you start to realize it bugs you so much that you might have to do something about it. No one ever tells you that when purpose finds you, it will be annoying.
Making the Decision to Answer the Call
When you finally understand that this idea is not going away and for some unknown reason you feel propelled to do something about it, get ready for the next phase: darkness.
Did I mention that you have just stepped into a journey with no idea what to do, where to go, or how to find your way. None of the answers to these will be clear and you must know that all that is required of you is to take the next step forward.
What to Expect
Expect to lurch forward, stumble, try again, be misunderstood, try again, stumble again, etc.
This is normal because along with purpose is an invitation to grow way beyond where you are now.
This sounds enchanting – right? Well, sorry, but growth can be a hard road to be on.
Oh, it can be as exciting as walking the cliffs overlooking Big Sur with its breathtaking scenery and it can also be as scary as driving through rain coming down in sheets where you can hardly see the road in front of you.
We finally Get to The Gifts of Purpose
Disguised at first as a brilliant idea, it is quickly followed by hardship, exclusion, being unheard, unseen, underappreciated, and sometimes reviled you will learn persistence, clarity, generosity, illumination and grace as you travel the road to understanding what it is you are going to do.
You will lose friends who insist on staying comfortable in the ways they have always thought and done things but you will gain a massive amount of new friendships, communities, deep conversations and opportunities so much bigger and wider that you would expect. It will open up the world for you and give you a way to make a difference of which you might never have dreamed.
One of the barriers to answering your call is comfort. It is much easier to stay where you are – especially if you have enough. But the biggest of all is your assumptions about what is possible, what is approved by your circle of friends and acquaintances, and what you stand to lose.
So the first hurdle you will come to and it will be very early and may last a long time, is fear. This is no small thing and takes consistent work to overcome and manage. When you do that, you will move forward fast and you will be able to share your courage with others.
It is a fearful thing to set a new course – especially when the path is not only not clear. And it is the thing that will give your life profound meaning.