There are loads of coaches that promise to help us find our life purposes.
Are you wondering if you need help finding your life purpose? Maybe you don’t actually believe in a single purpose, or maybe you think you’ve found yours but you’re not totally convinced.
Either way, let’s look at what it means to have a life purpose and whether you need help to find it.
Do we have a single life purpose?
You see, I don’t necessarily believe we have a singular life purpose. The idea of a single life purpose fits neatly in a box: it means we can find something and stick to it without giving it much more care.
We can decide a specific ‘calling’ is our life purpose, like becoming a yoga teacher, raising a family or even being a life coach.
But this suggestion is too neat for me.
There are many different paths we can walk throughout our lives, meaning there are a spectrum of possibilities for what our purpose could turn out to be.
Believing in a single life purpose means believing in predeterminism, where whatever happens in the future is already fixed. I’m not for this concept.
I don’t believe our path is set in stone.
In my experience, I’ve noticed an obsession around me with people trying to improve themselves to find their life purpose.
I don’t know about you, but I feel like I’ve heard this spoken about a lot on podcasts too. It seems everyone is on a quest to discover their purpose through whatever means someone suggests.
We live in a culture of people who believe “if I just follow this advice then…”
I’m not convinced.
How can someone else help me find my life purpose?
I’ve been guilty of hanging on to the every word of life coaches because I’ve felt desperate for clarity. I’ve paid for one-to-one sessions where I’ve basically used the coach as a therapist and I’ve signed up to manifestation programmes, designed to help me find clarity on my purpose.
These experiences were helpful exercises in generally helping me get clarity on my values, goals and the direction I wanted to go in at the time.
I found value in these experiences up to an extent.
But I didn’t find my mysterious life purpose through these conversations.
I hate to admit it, but I was keen to sign-up for the course and chat to the coach because of the bold promise that they would help me find my purpose.
It’s used a lot in self-help marketing materials.
Even though I know it’s rubbish, it still intrigues me – especially when I’m feeling confused about where to go in my life. I feel like I’ll listen to anything to help me at times.
Now: I believe people in the self-help industry, who make promises to help you unearth your life purpose, are well-intentioned.
They mean well.
What does this mean for you?
Coaches and self-proclaimed gurus are out there waiting to offer you advise on how to live because they want you to live a fulfilled, happy life – like the one they tell you they’re leading.
They want to help you get on in life.
But they also want to make money. The self-help industry is worth 10 billion dollars, and the advice from self-help folk doesn’t always come cheap.
There’s a reason they live in the Maldives and it’s called expensive advice.
I see how coaches can help you with goal-setting and getting clarity, as I’ve experienced. Making notes about what you like doing and thinking about the experiences you want are good exercises.
However, it’s pretty bold to suggest they can help you find your life purpose. Don’t you think?
This goes back to my first point that it’s too neat to suggest we have a single life purpose in the first place.
It’s a concept that sounds nice, sure. But who said we had a single life purpose?
I want to know why we can’t have multiple life purposes and set our own rules.
It seems there’s an unspoken pressure to discover the keys to our personal treasure troves, housing our life purposes. What, then, does it mean if you can’t find yours – do you need to seek help?
The problem with seeking help finding your life purpose
Don’t run to a life coach if you feel like you’re not able to locate your life purpose.
First of all, start with taking the pressure off.
If you think about it, I’m sure it’s not your pressure in the first place. Whose voice is in your head when you think about the need to detail your life purpose? And who is it that you want to tell?
It’s a societal myth that we need to have a specific purpose – and one that doesn’t do much, other than make us feel like failures for not having it printed off and stuck on the wall.
I see this in the case of my brother, who’s lost in the world.
He’s 19 and everyone is piling on the pressure for him to find his purpose, but the guy just wants to live without these inputs.
It’s causing him to feel more anxious and retreat into his room, so it’s clearly not the answer.
My parents suggested a life coach for him to help him improve his life and find out which direction to go in, but I think it’s a bad idea.
I believe only he has the answer and it doesn’t need to be one set thing.
I’m sure Ideapod founder Justin Brown would agree with me.
In his free masterclass, designed to debunk the hidden trap of needing to “improve yourself”, Justin explains that the only way to create a “motor of change” is through finding our authentic connection with your personal power.
He’s a former self-help addict who’s tried-and-tested numerous approaches, so I trust that he knows what works and what’s a load of rubbish.
“It’s very difficult to build this connection when you’re constantly listening to advice from others – especially in the self-help industry”.
Think about it, by seeking external help you’re actually denying yourself of your own power.
What does this mean for you?
You’re essentially telling yourself that you’re lost and you don’t have the answers.
You see, you’re suggesting that someone else knows you better than you.
You’re literally giving your power away.
In my experience, life coaches, who want to help you find your purpose, create programmes that are designed to help you optimize your life through changing aspects.
Now: what I learned from Justin’s video is that the idea we need to improve, change and fix ourselves is a Western cultural icon.
It’s one he doesn’t agree with.
He suggests you don’t need to improve yourself to change your life.
I’m behind this way of thinking.
Instead, he promotes a different approach. He says:
“It’s up to everyone at some point in their lives to take responsibility and develop their personal power within. No-one can do this for you. It’s up to you.”
He encourages us to take the power back into our own hands, not relying on someone else to have answers to our questions and share our mystical life purposes.
Based on his learnings from authentic teachers from around the world, including the legendary shaman Rudá Iandê, he has devised a five-step process that’s all about taking responsibility for your life and not relying on external voices.
1) Creating a new culture reframing entitlement and blame
2) Find your authentic connection with power
3) Putting things into perspective
4) Taking action
5) Creating your reality and purpose
Simply put: it’s up to us to define the norms and values of our lives, and to take responsibility for every aspect of our lives, including our happiness and wellbeing.
We then need to shift our focus away from seeking advice from others and to finding our unique connection with ourselves. Building a true, deep connection with ourselves allows us to find the answers we’re looking for.
Turns out, we had the answers all along.
“Once you have that connection that’s when life changes,” Justin says.
It’s also about putting things into perspective by flipping challenges on their head and seeing opportunities in the inevitable challenges of life.
Unlike positive thinking, such as the Law of Attraction, where we’re encouraged to suppress our thoughts and just focus on the good, this step is about looking at the challenge head-on. The opportunities are the natural result of this action.
Unshackling from societal conditions and taking small steps to forge our new realities is ultimately how we come to realize our purpose – one that has always existed within us.
I agree with Justin that we need to fully take responsibility for our own lives and who we are.
It’s about taking the power back into our hands.
I hope you get as much out of watching his free masterclass as I did.