8 things you don’t realize you’re doing because you lack purpose in life

There are times in our lives when nothing seems to make sense at all. You’ve tried many different things, none of them worked, and you wonder if there’s anything else that could help you regain momentum.

Do you feel a bit lost and directionless?

If you identify with any of these six behaviors, it might be an indication that you are lacking purpose in your life.

Keep reading to uncover these subtle signs and learn how to navigate your way towards finding your true purpose and momentum in life.

1) You’re always seeking external validation

People lacking purpose in life often find themselves in a constant chase for external validation.

They might not necessarily realize this, but their actions and decisions are often influenced by the opinions of others.

Whether it’s constantly checking social media for likes and comments, or changing behaviors to fit into certain social norms, these are signs that your self-worth is heavily dependent on external approval.

This pursuit for validation often stems from a lack of inner purpose.

When you don’t have a clear sense of what you want in life, you tend to look outside for affirmation.

Engaging in self-reflection and introspection can help you understand your own desires and expectations. This is a crucial step towards finding your true purpose.

Without this self-awareness, individuals can end up feeling dissatisfied and unfulfilled, despite receiving praise and approval from others. They might also experience feelings of emptiness and dissatisfaction, as their actions are not aligned with their authentic selves.

So if you find yourself constantly seeking validation from others, it might be time to take a step back and reevaluate your life purpose. Remember, the only approval you truly need is your own.

Over-relying on the outside affirmation has one more drawback…

2) You’re frequently indecisive

Individuals who lack purpose in life might often find themselves engulfed in indecisiveness. This isn’t about struggling to choose between a latte or an iced coffee – it’s about feeling constantly unsure about the bigger decisions in life.

When you don’t have a clear purpose, making decisions can feel like an uphill battle. You may find yourself wavering between different career paths, unable to commit to a long-term relationship, or even struggling to decide where you want to live.

This indecisiveness often stems from not knowing what you truly want. When you don’t have a clear sense of your life’s direction, every choice can seem overwhelming and fraught with potential regret.

If you’re finding yourself paralyzed by indecisiveness, it might be indicative of a deeper lack of purpose.

Taking time to reflect on your values, passions, and goals can help clear the fog of uncertainty.

Remember that it’s okay not to have all the answers right away. Finding your purpose is a journey, not a destination. It takes time and patience, but the clarity it brings makes the journey worthwhile.

Another sign of a lacking purpose can be seen in how you manage your time…

3) You’re constantly procrastinating

People often associate procrastination with laziness, but that’s not always the case. If you find yourself repeatedly postponing tasks or struggling to complete your work on time, it might be a symptom of lacking purpose in your life.

When we have a purpose, we are driven and motivated. Tasks related to our purpose feel meaningful and we’re naturally inclined to complete them. However, when you lack this driving force, even the simplest tasks can feel burdensome and easily put off.

Procrastination can also be a form of self-sabotage. Subconsciously, you might be avoiding tasks because they don’t align with your true desires or interests.

If you’re constantly procrastinating, it might be worth considering if your current path aligns with your authentic self.

Remember, though, only you can determine it within yourself — don’t look for answers in how others live their lives…

4) You’re stuck in a comparison trap

signs a man has low self esteem in a relationship 8 things you don't realize you're doing because you lack purpose in life

In the age of social media, it’s easy to fall into the trap of comparing ourselves with others. However, if you find yourself constantly measuring your life against others’, it might be a sign that you lack purpose.

When you know your purpose, you understand that everyone’s journey is unique. You focus on your own growth and progress rather than obsessing over others’ achievements.

But without a clear purpose, it’s easy to feel lost and start comparing.

The comparison trap can lead to feelings of inadequacy and discontentment. It distracts you from focusing on your own life and discovering what truly matters to you.

If you find yourself constantly caught in this comparison trap, it might be time to step back and refocus on finding your own purpose.

Remember, your journey is about you, not anyone else. 

That said, you might want to be careful when your personal journey gets too repetitive…

5) Your life feels monotonous

A sense of monotony or stagnation can often signify a lack of purpose in life. When you’re living with a clear purpose, every day feels meaningful. You wake up excited, eager to engage with your day and contribute to your purpose.

However, without a sense of purpose, days can blend into one another, creating a feeling of monotony. Even new experiences or opportunities may fail to excite you.

If you’re feeling stuck in a rut, it could be because you’re not living in alignment with your true purpose. Take some time for self-reflection and introspection. Ask yourself what truly motivates and excites you. Finding your purpose can bring color and excitement back into your life.

Speaking of excitement and the lack of thereof…

6) You’re frequently experiencing boredom

Boredom is a common feeling we all experience from time to time. But if you find yourself frequently feeling bored, this could be a sign of lacking purpose in life.

When you have a clear purpose, you’re naturally inclined to engage in activities that align with your values and interests. These activities bring fulfillment and satisfaction, reducing instances of boredom.

However, without a purpose, you may feel disconnected from your activities. Even when you’re busy, you may experience a sense of emptiness or dissatisfaction, leading to feelings of boredom.

Boredom might also be a sign that you’re not challenging yourself or stepping out of your comfort zone. When we engage in activities that push our boundaries and stimulate our minds, we feel engaged and alive.

If you’re frequently experiencing boredom despite being busy, it’s worth taking some time to reflect and discover what truly excites and motivates you.

Finding your purpose isn’t about being busy all the time; it’s about finding activities that bring meaning and fulfillment to your life.

There’s one more thing that can make or break a good momentum in your life…

7) You have a hard time setting and achieving goals

Setting and achieving goals come naturally when you have a clear purpose in life. Your purpose acts as a compass, guiding you towards your aspirations. However, if you’re struggling to set or achieve goals, it might be an indication of a lack of purpose.

Without a clear purpose, your goals might feel arbitrary or unimportant. You might find it hard to commit to these goals, leading to a cycle of setting and abandoning them. This can lead to feelings of frustration and failure.

Your purpose gives your goals meaning. It provides the motivation you need to overcome obstacles and persevere in the face of challenges. If you’re having trouble with goal-setting or achievement, it might be time to explore your purpose.

And lastly…

8) You’re avoiding commitment

warning signs a man has low self esteem 8 things you don't realize you're doing because you lack purpose in life

A fear or avoidance of commitment can often be a symptom of lacking purpose in life. This doesn’t just apply to romantic relationships, but also to jobs, friendships, and personal goals.

When you have a clear life purpose, committing to people, jobs, or goals that align with that purpose feels natural and fulfilling. However, without this sense of purpose, making long-term commitments can feel daunting.

You might find yourself jumping from job to job, avoiding long-term relationships, or frequently changing your personal goals.

This pattern of avoiding commitment is often a subconscious attempt to keep searching for something that feels right.

If you recognize this behavior in your own life, it might indicate that you’re still searching for your purpose.

Remember, discovering your purpose is a personal journey that takes time and self-reflection. It’s okay not to have all the answers right away. The important thing is to keep exploring and stay open to new experiences and possibilities.

In conclusion: The power of purpose

The complexity of human behavior and our responses to life’s challenges is deeply intertwined with our sense of purpose.

Famed psychiatrist and Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl, in his seminal book “Man’s Search for Meaning,” wrote, “Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how’.” This profound statement underscores the importance of having a purpose in life.

Living without a clear purpose can lead to feelings of restlessness, dissatisfaction, and a sense that something significant is missing from our lives. As we’ve explored throughout this piece, this lack might manifest in various ways – from chronic indecisiveness to an inability to set and achieve meaningful goals.

However, the beauty of being human is that we have the ability to self-reflect, learn, and grow. If you’ve seen yourself in any of these six behaviors, don’t despair. Consider it a call to embark on a journey toward self-discovery and finding your unique purpose in life.

Remember, discovering your purpose isn’t about reaching a destination. It’s about setting out on a journey that leads you closer to understanding yourself and what truly matters to you.

It’s about finding your ‘why’, the driving force behind your actions and decisions.

As you navigate this path, take solace in knowing that everyone’s journey is unique and it’s never too late to find your purpose.

Take the time to explore your passions, values, and dreams. And most importantly, be patient with yourself.

Finding your purpose is one of the most rewarding journeys you’ll embark on. It’s not always easy, but it’s certainly worth it.

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Picture of Tina Fey

Tina Fey

I've ridden the rails, gone off track and lost my train of thought. I'm writing for Ideapod to try and find it again. Hope you enjoy the journey with me.

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