Have you ever thought why are you here?
Not an easy question to answer and possibly because it’s framed around “why”…
How about what’s your purpose in life?
Big question… but I think a worthwhile journey to find your answer. I’d hate to die not appreciating what my purpose here had been… By the way, related to this I recommend reading “Dead Ahead” by @KateGL.
How about what’s your prime purpose?
To me that feels like a more tangible, immediate question to answer. It’s about primacy not absolute answers. It’s a question that might even guide our answers to the questions above.
Perhaps if you were the Dalai Lama you’d say your prime purpose is to be happy or to seek happiness. I don’t see life that way…
Firstly, happiness is often all around us though at times it may be overwhelmed by other negative experiences.
Secondly, happiness has value in the context of the trials & tribulations of life. Happiness & unhappiness come together – without the appreciation of one you can’t experience the other.
Thirdly, to blindly & singularly only seek happiness might lead us to avoid the risks & challenges that might also lead to unhappiness. I’ve always found endeavour motivating.
So what’s my prime purpose?
To raise my children? It’s a huge part of it but when they are grown up & have established their lives will my work have been done? It feels as my prime purpose is something that transcends the phases of my life.
To be financially secure? Again, it’s part of it but security comes and goes. Also I don’t believe the whole focus and prime purpose of my life is just about generating money.
To live long & prosper? A broader definition perhaps and there’s something appealing in that sentiment. However, there are old, prosperous and miserable people who I would not want to be. My end goal is not to win the race but to enjoy all that the journey brings and to leave something useful behind.
Is that my prime purpose then? I don’t think so. That’s my vision, my end goal. My purpose is to get there.
The only way I’ll do that is to learn, develop and help others. It’s a philosophy that’s got me here and I think it will serve me well to the end. In fulfilling that I will appreciate the journey along the way and the happiness it brings.
What’s your prime purpose?
You have verbalized so many of the thoughts going through my head recently, and far more eloquently than I would have done. My prime purpose…I suppose, is to live my life filled with meaning and when my time comes to leave this planet, I can know I have been truly spent! Spending amazing time with loved ones, help others grow into the wonderful folks they are (and have just lost sight of), create something positive that will last long beyond my name. I guess I want a primary bucket list that I can just keep on adding more things to and keep checking off until my last breath 🙂 Great post!
I like this – feels good 🙂
Heh heh… I do love a good bit of existential mulling.
I think I found my prime purpose very very recently. I’m here to get people talking – especially when they find themselves less able to do just that.
Very very cool post…. like what it raises.
Enjoyed this thought provoking post having been working on purpose with a couple of clients this week and coincidentally exploring my own… must be something in the air! On reflection I’ve arrived at my purpose being to continue to learn and grow in order to find new and exciting ways to support others transform their own lives in order to fulfill their purpose.
I’m not sure I have a prime purpose. I’m not sure I want or need one. After seeing the very excellent Ross Sargent speak at TEDxGranta a while back, I’m trying to be more in tune with the mindful movement of which he spoke. And in part that is about acknowledging that you, and things around you change so a definition can stick you in a moment, and if you don’t move when things pass, you risk getting stuck in a rut (I’m sorry I’m not explaining this as well as he did). Anyhoo, the upshot is that my purpose usually starts with ‘Currently I am…’ and I go from there.
to have fun along the way!!
You do have a wonderful writing style Mr Goddin! Thankfully I found my Prime Purpose in June 2007. It is:
‘I have found my recipe for my success and I can really help others find their recipe for their success!’
Over the years I have found out that I am good at asking questions that make people think, making connections between supposedly unconnected stuff and explaining things in a way that others find easy to understand.
Combine that with my drive to want to help and develop others and we are away. The final piece of the puzzle was realising that what worked for me and what was important to me was different than others. I took this to be good thing as I could use what I was great at to do what is important to me!
Thanks for reminding me of the journey I went on to get here!
Have a great weekend.
Great thoughts and questions. My all time favorite quote comes from W. Clement Stone: “All I want to do is change the world.” Steve Jobs famously talked about putting a dent in the Universe. In my own words, I want to move the world.
Time and again I come back to that. I try to think of more complicated purposes. I try to think of more specific purposes. I try to erase it from my mind and start fresh with a clean sheet. No matter how I pretty it up, turn it around, start over, edit, revise, polish, ignore, revisit, borrow from someone else, or try to forget, it always comes back around again.
Live the example. Be the difference. Change the world.
Sara, Doug, Julie, Karen, Ian, Phil & Broc – thank you for sharing your purposes, thoughts and comments. So glad it resonated with you and as always happens you’ve helped expand my thinking too – thanks!