The truth is, most people don't know what they want in life. But chances are that if you're reading this right now, you're a personal development junkie with more self-awareness than the average person. I'd also wager that living with purpose is incredibly important to you. That said, it may require you to explore the depths of your essence to find your true calling. It doesn't happen overnight.
So, if you've ever wondered what your life purpose is, or felt frustrated as to why you haven't figured it out yet, here are seven reasons that may be—and more importantly—how to fix them.
1. You are trying to live someone else's dream.
Maybe it's your parents' dream, or maybe you're trying to mimic the life of a celebrity you admire, or you're trying to follow a lifestyle that you think is just what you’re supposed to do, as per society.
Often, people want to try other people's dreams on for size ... but like the stepsisters who tried to wear Cinderella's glass slipper, it just won't fit. Ever. So, don't waste your time. Instead, figure out what you want in life. Get connected with your own unique desires, passions, and purpose.
Journal. Meditate. Contemplate. Visualize. Soul search.
Engage in these activities to get crystal clear on your desires. Then ask yourself why you desire those outcomes. How does your ideal life taste, smell, sound, and feel? Take some time to explore this vision to help ingrain it into your psyche. How might you start working toward even one aspect of your vision?
2. You have not taken inspired action.
If you're not willing to take authentic action—even if it's just baby steps—once you're clear on what you want, then either you haven't dug deep enough or something's not in true alignment with your soul. And if you're unclear about where to start, go back to step one for some introspective assistance.
Then, rinse and repeat.
3. You still have lessons to learn.
Sometimes we're chomping at the bit to experience a major shift right away, but the timing may not be right. You may need to surrender expectations. Sometimes your best course of action is to do some inspired waiting (ha!).
If you can't discern whether to wait or take action, look within. Ask your higher self what’s best for you at this time.
We have to go through certain life experiences and learn important lessons before we can find our purpose. These always turn out to be incredibly useful (and necessary) down the road.
4. You've settled for less than you deserve.
Although you yearn for more in life, you feel like you're "OK" for now and don't want to "stir the pot."
It's up to you if you want to live that mundane, mediocre existence. Just know that the universe will constantly poke at you and throw obstacles your way if you choose to ignore your true calling. Trust that greater things await if you're willing to put forth some effort, have patience, and be open.
5. You keep making excuses.
You play into a false story about how you have no time, have a family to focus on instead, don't have enough skill or education, or [pretty much insert any sabotaging excuse here].
Well, the time has come to stop deflecting and embrace a new story.
6. You are afraid of your own magnificence.
Although almost everyone fears failure at some point in their lives, many of us also fear success. (Yeah, it's pretty ridiculous.)
Soulpreneur Marie Forleo states it perfectly: "Follow your fear. It's a GPS for where your soul wants you to go."
So, step up to the plate and face your fears. The result may be pleasantly surprising. And did you ever think that it's actually pretty selfish not to share your gifts with the world? Go ahead and shine your bright, unique light already!
7. You haven't asked yourself this question: What will be your unique contribution to humanity before you die?
This doesn't have to be grandiose. Maybe you're a teacher who continually inspires your students to follow their dreams, or maybe you make it a point to have meaningful conversations with strangers you pass on the street.
Never underestimate the power of the ripple effect. Seemingly small actions can undulate out to have a tremendous impact on others and the world.
When you wake up feeling excited, inspired, and even a little scared all at once, you know you're on the right path. And when you're willing to take action and do something you wouldn't normally do for the sole purpose of actualizing your, ahem, soul purpose, then you know you've found it!