How Sweet is a Life with Purpose? Very!
Discovering your purpose includes looking at what is important to you, your values, a subject covered here previously. Beyond values, living with purpose is driven by what drives or motivates us.
Your current or previous work can provide clues to what drives you. A financial service professional confided that he was initially drawn to his work for the lifestyle yet decades into his career, he said,
“…I connect emotionally with my clients and I focus more on how they feel about their portfolios instead of fixating on the various components that make up their accounts … It allows me to focus on the people and not the product.”
Getting to know his clients, their families, and helping them, is a powerful motivator. This individual is also an avid golfer, his way of recharging after hours talking with clients. What would his internal life look like if he decided to retire, solely to golf? Something would surely be sorely missing.
In his 2019 book Job Optional*, Certified Financial Planner Casey Weade offers a compelling list of 15 motivations ranging from accomplishments to value to consider when thinking about your purpose. You can see all of Weade’s motivations here. Which of these resonate for you?
Lastly, what energizes you? This is about applying your strengths, talents, and gifts. Consider Anne who has a regulatory policing role in a renewable energy company. Climate justice is high on her values list and a strong driver. From the outside it looks like she is living a purposeful life, yet her work is sucking the life blood out of her! Anne is not tapping into her strengths as a communicator and educator. Awareness of what energizes you is no less critical in retirement.
Psychologist James Hollis reminds us that when we are doing what is right for us, we will feel a sense of purpose, meaning and satisfaction, and that communicates itself to others. No purpose is more worthy than others – the goal is to uncover your purpose, whatever that means to you.
You can read the full version of this article with references here.