At different seasons in our life journey, we get caught on the treadmill of life. We are merely surviving the day-to-day conundrum. When did being “so busy” in the hustle and bustle of life become our way of living? Surviving is essential to keep up with the pace of life, however without full life engagement, we are headed toward burnout and breakdown. When we are merely surviving, “we stop dreaming, we slowly begin to disengage from our work, from our relationships, and from life itself.” (Kelly, 2007). By living life on purpose, we can thrive versus just survive.
Often, surviving equates to a period of life transition, when life is out of balance in some way or we are searching for a greater sense of purpose and meaning. Taking time to pause and be mindful of this season of life is enough to inspire motivation for change. How do we get off the treadmill and out on the trail where we can take charge of our destination? An old paradigm and a fixed mindset for motivation is that outcome fuels performance. However, a new paradigm and a growth mindset is that purpose fuels performance. This is not to say that outcome cannot fuel performance, however outcome is an external motivator and is
what keeps us chasing the carrot on the treadmill of life. Purpose is an internal motivator and gives us deeper meaning to why we exist and leads to lasting fulfillment. Knowing your life purpose will inspire you to live the life you were meant to live.
Have you seen Academy Award and Golden Globe Award winner Hugo? It is about an orphaned boy who embarks on a quest to solve the mystery of the automaton clock and find a place he can call home. I was inspired by the deep message of the quest for purpose.
Hugo: Everything has a purpose, even machines. Clocks tell the time, trains take you places. They do what they’re meant to do, like Monsieur Labisse. Maybe that’s why broken machines make me so sad, they can’t do what they’re meant to do. Maybe it’s the same with people. If you lose your purpose, it’s like you’re broken.
Hugo: Right after my father died, I would come up here a lot. I’d imagine the whole world was one big machine. Machines never come with any extra parts, you know. They always come with the exact amount they need. So I figured if the entire world was one big machine, I couldn’t be an extra part. I had to be here for some reason. And that means you have to be here for some reason too.
So what is your purpose? What is your why? These questions are not intended to be answered immediately. It takes embarking on a journey of self-discovery. To move from surviving to a place we are thriving, we have to be intentional and have a plan. Tom Paterson’s LifePlan™ experience guides us through four steps:
1. Gaining perspective: Where have I been? Where am I now?
2) Making a plan: What’s important now?
3) Management: Living it out, how am I doing?
4) Renewal: What worked, what didn’t, what needs to change?
Start with gaining perspective. Reflect on turning points in your life, both positive and negative. What were expectations others had for you? What were expectations you had for yourself? What were your childhood dreams? Why? Start dreaming again. Ask yourself the “why” behind those dreams. The pursuit of dreams creates passion, energy, and purpose. Purpose is living the life you were meant to live. Dreaming gets you off the treadmill and onto the trail where you can navigate your own destination. Welcome to the journey.
Live Life on Purpose Workshops (www.ascentplanning.com/workshops)
The Dream Manager by Matthew Kelly
The Power of Full Engagement by James Loehr
Living the Life You Were Meant to Live by Tom Paterson
“Start Where You Are” Self-Exploration Journal
Claudine thrives in inspiring individuals and teams toward clarity and breakthrough to be their personal best. She is a certified LifePlan™ and Family Leadership Training Institute Facilitator. Since 1995, she has been in the fitness/wellness and sports
industry, including corporate wellness, college football, recreation, and senior services. Claudine is the owner of Ascent LifePlanning, LLC and facilitates workshops, leadership classes, coordinates events, volunteers, and mentors.