Finding Your Life Purpose
To me, being an entrepreneur is about more than just the money.
It has to be! If your whole existence is about making enough money to support your lifestyle, that’s a very dreary life indeed.
Being an entrepreneur is about using everything you are to enrich those around you while living a life you love.
And someone who finds themselves in that position doesn’t want a “four hour work week.” Why would you only want to work four hours a week if you enjoy what you do?
When I first started online, YES, it was about the money. There was no question about that. I couldn’t make a living delivering pizzas or signing people up for credit cards in front of a store. It just wasn’t happening. Each month we went deeper in debt.
In fact I hated the very word “work.” It was what you did to just barely scrape by to get enough money to have fun. But today things have changed quite a bit. I do have a few of those “passive automated income streams” everyone talks about. And I definitely live below my means.
So why keep working, expanding, and growing in business?
It’s simple. You find work that is ALSO FUN. Without meaningful work, you will experience a feeling of “something lacking” in your life. In some cases, you can’t quite put your finger on it. It just feels like there is something missing.
On the other side of the fence, when you find yourself putting in too many hours doing things you don’t enjoy, you quickly burn out. In fact, I’ve found it possible to burn out on something you enjoy by doing it too much (I’ve had that happen both in work and in hobbies).
So there is also a point of balance in your life. Let’s see how long your marriage and family last if you all you do is work (and your health for that matter if sleep and eating habits are sacrificed).
A big key here is to find work you enjoy…that you have to pull yourself away from. Instead of dreading work, you look forward to it and love it.
The recent recommendations I’ve made for Steve Little’s PerfectBizFinder program can help you with this…
If you were like me and hated ALL the work you did before becoming an entrepreneur, how do you go about finding work you love and your life purpose?
Here are a few ideas and exercises that may help you.
#1 – Write your obituary.
I first heard this one back in college. Plan your obituary for decades in the future (be optimistic here). What accomplishments will you have made? What will you be known for? How will you be remembered? Keep it light hearted as you write this (don’t discourage yourself). It should be a fun exercise, because you’re going to the end result. Then you can work back from that point. If you’ve accomplish such-and-such by the time you die, what steps lead you up to that point? What should you be doing now?
#2 – What would you do if you could not fail?
If there was no chance of failure, and no one could stand in your way…what would you be doing? I like this question because it’s often our fears that hold us back from becoming who we really want. EVERYONE has problems with self-esteem in some area of their life. Where is fear holding you back? Open up a word processor and start writing about this. You may write several dozen versions of this before you come to the real bottom line (there is a lot of junk on the service from other people’s opinions, desires, etc.).
#3 – Who are you heroes and who would you most like to meet?
Who are your heroes? Who do you look up to? Why? What have they accomplished that you identify with? What did they overcome? What connection is there between them and your life purpose? You’ll often find there is some connection (although not always directly) between what they’ve accomplished and what you want to do. And remember, your heroes don’t have to be famous. They could be someone who influenced you in life. What common values do your heroes and you share?
#4 – What do you LOVE to do?
What do you love to do? When you’re doing this activity, time just seems to fly by. You’re in the zone where you time has no meaning to you. In business, you may find this only happens with a few very specific activities. How can we focus more of your time doing that (and outsource the rest)? In fact, I’ve found that most people LOVE certain elements of what they do already. Part of the entrepreneurial process is discovering those and finding ways to spend more time there.
#5 – What is your true purpose in life?
Open up your word processing program again. Ask yourself that question. What is your true purpose in life? Answer it. Then answer it again. Refine your answer. Just like a copywriter may write several dozen or several HUNDRED headlines to find the attention grabber, follow the same strategy here. Keep answering the question until you feel the connection…till it hits you emotionally. You will “feel it” when you’ve hit something that connects with you.
What to Do About It
Once you find your purpose, what can you do about it? While some people are able to accomplish this through their job, the majority find they have to become an entrepreneur to really let their gifts shine. Find a business model that allows you to focus on this. Then build a team you can delegate or outsource to for all the activities which don’t suit you and your gifts.
It’s not just about the money. It’s about building a lifestyle you love. And that’s not accomplished simply by working as little as possible. It’s about discovering who you are…and how you can best build sellable value for others.
The links above are to an affiliate program for the PerfectBizFinder manual and monthly membership site.Related Entries:
- Enterpreneur or Employee
- The Unforgiveable Business Sin
- Goal Setting Worksheets
- Find Your Skills Today
- What Are the Desires in Your Heart?