I once read an article on the website of Mark Manson titled something in the theme of ‘find your life purpose in 7 questions’. My normal reaction would be ‘who are you thinking you have the solutions‘, but being in a bit of a searching phase myself, I continued reading.
I must admit that I don’t remember the full article; but some of the questions did get stuck in my subconscious. The purpose of life is something that has always intrigued the human race. Why are we here, what is the reason for this life? Days are just passing, the clock just keeps on ticking, but what for? What are we living those days towards to? Waiting for that something big to happen, not knowing what it is and how to reach for it? Or just ‘living’ day-to-day life until death comes and we simply disappear from this earth?
It feels like some people are born knowing their purpose. Some people know they want to become a doctor from the age of 10, others just feel intuitively that they’re made for a political career. People like Martin Luther King or Oprah Winfrey seem to be born for that one path. Che Guevara followed his path to rebellion, Jesus followed his path to empathy and sacrifice. I’m no Martin Luther King nor am I a Che Guevara, but I do feel that I’m here for something. Maybe even something big. So what is my path?
The first question I remember was pretty straight forward and clarified a whole lot the minute it was answered;
What makes you forget to eat and poop?
For me, that ‘thing’ is my creativity and my writing. I used to spend hours behind my laptop, my desk filled with all different sketches and concepts. Empty coffee mugs and a half emptied bottle of wine. My bladder filled up to the top without even the thought of going to pee. That moment I felt like there was a lightbulb turning on in my head and I realised how much I missed it and how much I was missing out on. I was not doing the things that would make me forget to eat and poop and it was time to change that. I picked up writing again, I re-boosted my creativity and forgot to eat and poop again.
Now ask yourself this;
What is true about you today that would make your 8-year-old self cry?
I’m not a dolphin trainer and my bestie isn’t a whale. True life goals of an 8-year-old. I’d be crying big fat crocodile tears hearing how my life didn’t end up. As this weren’t the most realistic goals, I skipped a few years and went back to myself at 10 years of age. What would make that 10-year-old self cry?
I used to be bullied, sadly, as many others. I got bullied terribly up until a stage that I’d feel physically ill having to go back to school. Up to a stage that my mom would have to drag me out of bed while crying my lounges out to get me prepared for school. By that time, I had other wishes for myself than to become a dolphin trainer. I wanted to be accepted, I craved for the recognition of me as a person, as a human fucking being. Kids told me I was ugly, that I was weak and worthless. I think my deepest wish, was for people to just like me.
And yes, by the age of 21 I became the ‘hot’ popular girl I always wished to become. I was working in hospitality and figured out my feminine powers. I was cute, flirty, good-looking and carried myself with self-confidence. I did become the person I couldn’t wait to be, but against what cost? If my younger self was standing right in front of me, she’d be terribly sad about the ways I used to become that strong, good-looking popular person. She’d be terribly sad about the amount of ‘me-ness’ and self respect I needed to lose, to become that person. It took me some more years of life and experience to figure out what true self-confidence and beauty looks like.
A wise man (okay, my dad) once told me that there’s two sides to a coin as there are to a story. Every memory, every reached goal and every fulfilled wish. By now, my 8-10-or 11-year-old-self wouldn’t cry that much. She’d be a bit sad about the fact that I haven’t travelled the world yet, nor saved it and that I’m not a dolphin trainer. But I think that my younger self would be pretty damn proud seeing me right now.
Those two questions that got stuck in my mind got me thinking; what is happiness to me, what is my purpose in this life and how am I going to get there without leaving my true self waiting on the side-line?
The questions in this article can’t just give you your purpose in life. They don’t reflect your key to happiness. They don’t give a solution to the complications in your life. What they can do is make you think. They might provide you some insights that you maybe otherwise wouldn’t have gotten. They might plant the tiny seed of a question that at some point in life develops to a plant. And maybe, some day, that plant will grow fruits.
What’s my path or my purpose in this life? I might need some more years to figure that one out. What I do know, is to keep questioning, keep looking, keep searching. You’re the one in control, no one else is gonna do it for ye. So now take a minute. Take ten minutes if you need them. Check out Mark Mansons’ blog, read the article and gain yourself some insights for your search.
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