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
- Beyond your immediate family’s wellbeing, what matters most to you?
- When do you feel as if you are at your best?
- What are you naturally good at?
- What are your favorite activities?
- What and/or who inspires you? What makes you think on a deeper level?
- What type of people do you admire? What qualities inspire you in other people?
- How has your life changed in the past ten years? Have your values changed or are they the same as before?
- If you could help anyone with a task, who would you help and with what task?
- Do you think of yourself as more of a creative person, an analytical person, or an entrepreneurial type of person?
- If you had to speak on any topic in front of a large group of people, what topic would you prefer to speak about?
- Do you generally work better in groups or on your own?
- What is the one problem in life, in business, or in the world that you would really like to solve?
- How do you imagine the remainder of your life?
- 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?
- And the age old question, what would you do if you knew you could not fail?
Tell me. Have you discovered your purpose yet?