When you hear someone talking about "wanting to find their life purpose", what's your response?
I didn't realise your life purpose was a "thing" to find until quite recently. I thought it was something you sort of fell into as you grew up, got older and tried different experiences in life. I thought I was living my life quite happily without needing to "know my life purpose".
What I've learnt these past few years is that until I uncovered what my life purpose is and truly accepted that's who I am, everything else I did felt false. I'm not saying I regret anything I've ever done, or the career path I've taken, or the amazing husband and family I've got. No. It's deeper than that.
To help me explain I'm going to have to tell you a bit more about me. I don't know where you are on your journey through life, but if this helps you look at yourself in a new way then I've done my job in supporting you and helping you shine a light on yourself - my true purpose in life: helping you listen and be yourself.
I'm 49 and live with my husband and two talented teenage sons. That's important in my story. I've been running my own businesses for the past 16 years with some incredible successes and the usual roller coaster experiences along the way.
When the credit crunch of 2008 struck, I also had to deal with my Mum's cancer returning. My business sales halved over night never to recover. Mum hung on for 9 months out of the 18 months the consultant had suggested she'd have. As you can imagine this was a major roller coaster for me. My youngest started school in the September, so I was all over the place.
I've always been a nurturer. I'd never been interested in astrology and the like, but when I came across the Vitality Test I understood my need to understand people and help keep people safe. At whatever cost to myself. You see, my own health was going through a tricky patch as I ran around after my children, my business and travelled across the country to visit Mum and Dad.
When you know something's not quite right
The life story goes on, but for now it's just important for you to know that I knew that things weren't right. I guess I felt I was keeping things together and doing my best for my family, friends, business which in turn would be right for me.
I kept this going for years! 😉 Yeah. I know. A sensible, talented business woman like me should have known better. But I didn't at the time. I felt I was doing the "right thing". What I hadn't realised, but was starting to, was that I may be supporting others well, but where had I disappeared to within all of this?
I knew I was living my life on empty much of the time. i had wonderful support from family and friends, work colleagues and staff members. But it wasn't enough.
My first realisation that I was stuck was when I finally realised that the business I'd grown wasn't what I wanted to do anymore. It had grown into something that wasn't what I loved. Do you know it was such a relief to realise that. And when I told my husband I was selling the business later that day I felt a different person - just by taking that decision!
Finding yourself again
As a child I was allowed to wander freely in the country village I lived in. I knew I was loved by my family and they allowed me to make up plays and create mud pies and make "perfume" from rose petals. I have wonderful memories of that time.
So what happens between that carefree time of childhood (I appreciate not everyone has this) and living my life as a wife, mother and business owner in my 30s? Well, I'm just going to use that term - "Life happens". Right? We don't always know what we're doing. We follow along some sort of route that we believe is right for us. We may take some twists and turns along the way, but ultimately it's a journey and you experience all sorts of things and meet all kinds of people.
I realised when I took that business decision that I'd lost me in all of the "stuff" that was happening. I've no idea when I lost myself, but it's taken probably the last eleven years since Mum's death for me to truly discover who I am. What I truly love. What makes me happy. And yes, finding my life purpose.
I didn't know it was a 'thing' to find! But now I've found discovered my life purpose everything makes sense - what I've done all my life and what I want to do in the future too.
I realised that when I felt 'off balance' then i had to do something different to get me back in balance. Compared to some, I've not done very much learning or doing on this journey. I guess listening found me along the way and once I learnt to listen to myself I found I knew when I had to change something to get back in balance again.
Is it easy to find your life purpose?
For me it's been quite a journey and taken eleven years. I've no idea if that's how long it takes everyone, or if there's shortcuts! Maybe it's taken me that long so that I can be here right now sharing what I know so that it won't take you as long to find yourself again.
I took myself through Simon Sinek's Find Your Why programme a few years ago, before I took clients through it. It was powerful. But there was still something missing.
I started working with Deborah about 5 years ago when we exchanged skills with each other - she coached me and I helped her with her business. It was a very different way of working, intuitively, but as I'd tried lots of other things I was happy to try this out. I started to see things differently and look at situations from a different angle.
Since December 2019 Deborah and I have been working together to create Joy 2 Success, where you are now reading this. We created a 5 week course in January and I was the first participant of it. Deborah led me through the 5 weeks taking a simple step each week, and *bang* it was like the fireworks going off in my head when I realised what I was learning!
It felt like Deborah's calm caring guidance was allowing me to peel back the layers of rock which I'd been protecting myself with as each new life challenge had come up, I'd added a new layer. As I saw what I'd been hiding, I realised that I'd been hiding from myself and that's why I felt out of alignment - maybe it was the rocks too! 😉
I'm not saying I took the experience lightly or that it didn't have a profound effect on me. It has. When you start lifting the layers of life you realise that by hiding yourself away from what you believe is hurt and pain, you're hiding a lot of the good bits too! This course showed me who I am and having someone else, a talented supportive coach like Deborah, encouraged me to accept it. Yep, even through all that it's taken me a few months to accept my life purpose!
Are you ready to find your life purpose?
You may not be and that's OK. You may already be really clear who you are and that you're fully sharing your skills and talents with those in your life and the wider community.
One of the things I've learnt is that you have to be ready. Deborah calls it divine timing! Maybe that's why we hear so many people talking about being stuck but not being prepared to do anything about it. Sometimes it feels easier to stay stuck than do something about it. Many people have said that they're "happy enough", and that's OK. Each of us can do what we like with our lives. I do however see people not using their skills and talents and it makes me sad that their gifts aren't being shared with others.
How do you know if you're ready? I think you'll have a feeling of something missing in your life. Or you feel there's something different you're being called to do but you don't know what. Or you're ready to move away from a place of feeling stuck.
Knowing your life purpose, or as we like to call it, your Joy Of Being, helps you get up every day with that knowing you're on the right track. It won't all be sunshine and roses though. But by knowing who you are you'll be able to deal with everything the roller coaster of life throws at you with that balance inside and outside of you. Keeping yourself on the rails if you like analogies.
If you're ready, we'd love to help you un-peel those layers carefully, and with our full support discover your life purpose. They are simple steps but it may not be easy. We make no apology for that. I'm sure you know a lot of quotes about going outside your comfort zone to see the magic? Yep, it's a lot like that.
We're running a live course starting 14th July. If you're ready then join us. If you're not, keep in touch and we'll be here when you are. Any questions, please do ask. It's not woo woo. This is real life and I'd love for you to start loving living it as much as I am now I know my life purpose - my Joy Of Being 🙂