What is your purpose in life?

I used to ask myself this question every day. I think I have finally figured it out after many years of soul searching…. Here are my thoughts. Would equally appreciate yours.

As we all know today, it is a cardinal sin to reason without sufficient data – In today’s world, if you are young, you have had hardly any time to explore anything very much apart from school work.

The little time you have before puberty hits with its own distractions, gets ground down in the relentless cycle of school and continuous adult supervision/micromanagement.

It’s never too late to choose your essence, or yourself, although if you are older, you will have to be much more patient in order to progress.

I recommend making a spreadsheet… When in doubt, make a spreadsheet, assess everything in columns – it’s a wonderful aid to analysis.

After all, your life’s purpose is not going to fall into your lap – Oh wait, actually it will! If you put yourself in the way of various experiences, you might get a sense for something that may be your something.

So wanna know my 2 cents for a purposeful life? Here they are…

1. Stop and smell the roses – After you have completed high school, don’t be in a tearing hurry to go down the slippery slope of more college, then bachelors, then maybe masters, and before you know it you are stuck in a job that will exploit your youthful enthusiasm to the maximum.

2. Take some time off – Take a year, take a couple of years off – If you are already an adult and not yet well on your way on the journey to self-discovery, there is no point hurrying to jump headlong into the socially prescribed life. First things first!

3. Explore and learn – Learning is not exclusive to academic institutions – You can learn more on your own terms and in a few weeks than you will in an entire semester in college.

4. Move with diverse people, travel, don’t treat it simply as fun – Fun is an overrated thing, caused by the reward mechanism of your brain – true peace and a calm sense of tranquility comes when you learn, when you introspect, when you are grounded in yourself, not at the mercy of external phenomena – this is not a chemical phenomenon.

5. Go face nature – Not with the complete security of the technology, but push the edge of your comfort zone and live in a little rough – Learn to get wet and not care, or be cold and not shiver. Quiet that incessant dialog in your head, in the presence of raw nature. Pain and discomfort, like happiness, are mostly in your head, on a level removed from your true self. Experience that, stop fearing and avoiding it.

6. Do physical things – The body is very much ignored in our cerebral world and we pay for it in the form of diseases and deficiencies. A strong mind is expressed only through a robust body. You won’t realize this truth till you experience it. Half yourself is your body – develop it.

7. Change is overrated – Trees don’t change, they grow and they endure – they may bend away from the wind or towards the sun, but they maintain their structure and shape forever. Shape yourself and extend, but retain that shape, that uniqueness.

8. Boredom is a myth – If you are bored, it’s because you lack the energy or the will to go to find interesting. Either discipline yourself to be active, or train yourself to have more energy! There is no excuse.

9. If you feel lost and have no clue about yourself, solve that first – You can’t keep doing other things thinking you will figure it out later! Sit in a cave for a year if necessary, but don’t start raising skyscrapers before you are sure where the foundation should be placed. A life unexamined is no life at all and a self-unexamined is not even a self.

10. Identify who you really are – You should not be spending sleepless nights about how you are going to pass that exam or court that loved one, but rather about who you are, and where you really want to go, about whether everything you have been told is really true – that sleep is well sacrificed if you gain even a glimpse of insight into those things.
At the end of the day, what matters is yourself. The connection you have to find between some action and your innermost self – this can turn something as mundane as lifting a barbell or digging the earth into an unforgettable experience.

Good luck, with finding yourself – it’s really right in front of you.

Share your thoughts…

Written by

Ziad Abdelnour is a political activist and is the Founder and President of the United States Committee for a Free Lebanon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.