An Exercise in Living with Purpose

Obligations via work or family, global, political and economic concerns and our personal health are some significant issues to living with intention and working with purpose. Our obligations require us to spend time, money and resources. Global events involving politics and economics distract us. And the pursuit for personal health consumes our attention. As we age these factors collide with increased frequency and challenge our ability to live with intention and work with purpose.

But our age provides us with a greater source of knowledge and experience from which to define and redefine our purpose. The key is to not let these issues, or any others for that matter, distract us from achieving our destiny. As William Jennings Bryan once wrote, "Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved."

So, how exactly can you identify your destiny or purpose amidst the convergence of issues? How can one determine a way to live with intention and work with purpose while simultaneously fulfilling their obligations? It is possible. If you make defining your purpose a priority, all you have to do is complete a simple three-step exercise called A.I.M. for Your Purpose.

To complete this exercise you will need to answer three questions using the AIM acronym for (Action, Individual and Mission). If you wish to have more than one purpose, and most people are capable of doing so, then complete this exercise for each purpose.
  • What Action do you want to take?
  • What Individuals do you want to help?
  • What Mission do you want to accomplish?
Below are two of my examples:
  • I want to teach (action) high school and college students (individuals) that their school, major and GPA play a secondary role in their future success (mission).
  • I want to help (action) small business owners (individuals) understand that their small business will only grow as much as they grow personally (mission).
Once completed, post this exercise somewhere you will see it each day. As you develop both personally and professionally, challenge yourself to update your purpose. After all, you just need to A.I.M.!


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