Ever wonder what your reason is for getting up every day?
Have you ever asked yourself why? There must be a reason right, your 1-400 trillion chance of being alive and on this earth could surely not be by chance.
We all struggle with our why and I think it is because we get caught up in surviving life and not living life. The way you learned to survive may not be the way you want to live.
One thing that I know for sure is that your “why” will change throughout the stages of your life, your why will be different from when you were a child to when you start college to when you become a parent. And that is ok, you don't have one why for your entire life as many books and articles seem to suggest.
There are two methods I would suggest you find your why for this time in your life.
Method one: 7 levels deep
The first is the 7 levels deep method that you will find in your guided journals. This is a great method to help you clarify your why, or what your motive, is for wanting something.
For example, If you were asked the question.
[Question] what is it that you most want?
[Answer] I want to own your own home.
Then repeat this process by asking
[Question] Why do you want… [your own home]
Repeat this 7 times to get to your Why. The question and answers would look like the below.
Question #1: What about [Thing I want:] is important to me?
Question #2: Why is [answer 1] important to me?
Question #3: Why is [answer 2] important to me?
Question #4: Why is [answer 3] important to me?
Question #5: Why is [answer 4] important to me?
Question #6: Why is [answer 5] important to me?
Question #7: Why is [answer 6] important to me?
Method two: Life experiences tied to your life purpose
The second method is a method I call the “life experience” method. With this method, you are recalling a time or experience in your life when you were most happy, doing what you most love to do, and what you would do for free if you could. There are 8 activities which require you to be introspective. It is a good idea to write down your thoughts in your guided journal as you reflect upon the list below.
- What was your happiest memory or what did you most like to do as a child?
What did you have a passion for before adult life got in the way? Find a way to tie your current life back to those original interests. This is most likely one of your WHY’s and closely linked to to one of your life purposes.
- You have probably heard people say, “Time flies when you are having fun!” What activity that makes you forget about the passage of time? Moments like this are what psychologists call the “flow,” and what spirituals call connecting with the divine. Whatever is the case for you, these activities are where your passions are.
- What are things you are willing to do even if you look like a fool? Practice makes perfect but at some point you sucked. And, in order to get better you to have have made some mistakes and embarrassed yourself in doing so. These activities are meaningful enough for you that you do them regardless of other people’s opinions.
Feeling foolish comes with the territory when you are on the path to achieving something important or significant.
- What do people ask of you when they come to you for help?
Is it a specific talent that you have? Are you a sounding board for your friends’ concerns? What do people thank you for? Appreciation from other people can help clarify your why.
- Think about mortality. What you would be doing if you only had a year left to live? Most people don't like thinking about death, but death forces us to focus on the truly important things. This often leads you to let go of things that are trivial or distracting and to discover what your “why” is. Death may be the only thing that can give you a clear perspective on the value of your life. How do you want people to remember you?
- If you were given the chance to teach others (e.g. young people), what would you teach them?
If you consider this question, you are really thinking about what you would change about the world, or what knowledge you want to pass on to future generations. This question also forces you to reflect upon the things in life that you believe you are truly competent in and able to teach other people. How would you want to improve other people's lives, or where do you believe there is a gap in knowledge that you could fill? Is this perhaps one of your “why’s”
- What would you do with all of your free time if money was not an issue?
Considering this question is a great way to discover your passion. If you are doing something that you are passionate about, it won't feel like work. Do you work to live or do you live to work? If you're not motivated by money, are you motivated by time? Would you spend your time on something that you love to do? What would that be?
- What can you can do to make other people’s lives better?
Having self-awareness is great. However, doing something that will benefit others more than yourself is amazing. In fact, research has shown that people who have a sense of purpose and are grateful for their lives often contribute more to the world beyond themselves than those who do not have this sense of gratitude.
Finding your “why” is important not only for success in your personal and professional life but also for your well-being and happiness.
Continue reading the Benefits of Knowing Your “Why”
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