Why (and How) to Find Your Purpose

The Dalai Lama once said that, “The purpose of our lives is to be happy.” So simple, yet in a way it is also so profound.

Getting meaning from life’s experiences, having a set of goals, knowing which direction you are headed in, and feeling a sense of intentionality. These are all signs of purpose, and they have a tendency to guide your thoughts and behaviors.

Purpose is tied to happiness, which is tied to wellbeing. And it has been known for quite some time that happier people are often healthier people. Not just in spirit, but in body and mind as well.

Studies show that having a sense of purpose in life may actually help you live longer. That goes for whether you find that purpose early or later on in life. People who enjoy their lives and have a positive outlook are more physically adept later in life too. They show significantly slower declines in physical ability as they get older. Not only that, people who feel as if they have a greater sense of purpose may be less likely to develop mild cognitive impairment and even Alzheimer’s disease.

The earlier you find your own sense of purpose, the earlier your wellbeing may see the benefits. Though if you are not quite yet sure of your life’s meaning, keep on soul searching. Isn’t it worth it to not just life happier, but to live longer as well?

Now, I will not claim that I can tell you about your purpose in life. Though I can give you some questions to ask yourself if you are not quite yet sure, or if perhaps you are feeling somewhat conflicted. I have fifteen of them, in fact. Go ahead and grab a pen and paper. I’ll wait here.

Are you ready? That does not count as a question, by the way. Here goes:

15 Questions to Ask Yourself to Help Find Your Purpose

  1. Beyond your immediate family’s wellbeing, what matters most to you?
  2. When do you feel as if you are at your best?
  3. What are you naturally good at?
  4. What are your favorite activities?
  5. What and/or who inspires you? What makes you think on a deeper level?
  6. What type of people do you admire? What qualities inspire you in other people?
  7. How has your life changed in the past ten years? Have your values changed or are they the same as before?
  8. If you could help anyone with a task, who would you help and with what task?
  9. Do you think of yourself as more of a creative person, an analytical person, or an entrepreneurial type of person?
  10. If you had to speak on any topic in front of a large group of people, what topic would you prefer to speak about?
  11. Do you generally work better in groups or on your own?
  12. What is the one problem in life, in business, or in the world that you would really like to solve?
  13. How do you imagine the remainder of your life?
  14. If you knew that your life was coming to an end, is there anything you would regret not having finished or not having done at all?
  15. And the age old question, what would you do if you knew you could not fail?

Tell me. Have you discovered your purpose yet?

The purpose of life is to be happy

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  1. You definitely have a lot to think about here. I think right now, just being a mom makes me happy.

  2. Great post. Interesting and thought provoking questions.

  3. This is such a great post! Part of growing up is finding your purpose! I’m still on my journey! :)

  4. I agree with Robin, I don’t feel like I have much time to explore because family/friends take up my time.

  5. What a fantastic post, it is so true how we feel better all around when we are doing the things that really fulfill us aka our purpose! Sharing this post with a few friends who I know will find great peace in this!

  6. I have been thinking about this a lot lately now that the kids are in school full time I am not a full time mommy in the sense they need me 24/7

  7. These are fantastic questions to think about. Great post.

  8. very interesting.What great questions to get me thinking this morning

  9. Excellent post. Definitely getting the brain working today!

  10. GREAT POST!!!!!! Excellent tips and questions to get me thinking!!

  11. Bookmarking! Need to answer these questions myself when toddler is napping.

  12. This is helpful at any point in your life – when you’re graduating high school or college, when you’re middle aged and when you’re older like me. I’m going over each question to get a feel for things that are going on with me.

  13. Absolutely adore this post. I’ve struggled with finding my purpose for years, and have recently found a place where I’m happy, and content. Thanks so much for sharing – I’m book marking it for the next time I start to feel lost again!

  14. Amy Desrosiers says:

    I would speak about how drugs can ruin a family.

  15. Those are great questions. I’m going to really spend some time with them — so thought-provoking.

  16. Great post! These are some questions that really make me think.

  17. Great set of questions. I did my best to answer them and I think that I am living my purpose for the most part. I do think I change depending on situations in my life.

  18. This is such a great post! “The purpose of our lives is to be happy” I agree!

  19. Those are great questions to ask myself. I’m not sure what my purpose is but this post made me really think about it!

  20. Those are some very deep questions. Deep yet extremely important to consider. I would like to say I have an easy answer for every single one but some have me thinking.

  21. I know my purpose and I am blessed to have that purpose! Great post!

  22. I think my real purpose has always been to have my children. Outside of that, I have yet to find out.

  23. Great post. I have found that as I move through life my purpose changes, so I don’t see it as a static thing. Just like the world around you, your purpose will evolve and change.

  24. A lot of people ask me why I bother to work so much when I’m home with the kids. Besides needing the income , I also know that I will need to hold on to my own purpose for those days when the kids are bigger and don’t need me so much. That’s going to come quickly!

  25. I love that. The purpose is happiness!

  26. These are good questions to reflect on! it is important to take time to evaluate why we are doing things.

  27. These are some very interesting posed to think about. Thanks.

  28. Those are really great questions and definitely a place to start if you are pondering. Especially number 1.


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