49 Chapters
Medium 9781605095233

Chapter 10 Why Do I Get Up in the Morning?

Leider, Richard J. Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.

Rainer Maria Rilke

Living on purpose is a choice. It is a way of living in which you are aware each moment of each day that you have a choice about what to say and do and how to be. Every situation presents you with a new purpose moment—an opportunity to show up on purpose—and you are conscious of the opportunities.

In other words, living on purpose simply means becoming aware of who you are and what you are bringing to life during each day.

A good place to start living on purpose is to ponder the ultimate purpose question: Why do I get up in the morning? For many of us, this question is as tough as it is inevtable. Ideally, we should not let a day pass without spending some time reflecting on the question.

This chapter will explore answers to that question and discuss the link between purpose and happiness.

Often we are so busy trying to answer the questions that we fail to take time to acknowledge, even celebrate, the questions themselves. We believe meaning comes from the answers, from knowing. In fact, our quest to know may make it harder to find meaning. We can so easily sit down at the computer and Google the answers that we rarely take the time to push the pause button and live in the questions, the big questions that matter. Technology has accelerated life, we are in a hurry, we have lost respect for the mystery embodied by the big questions.

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Medium 9781605095233

Chapter 5 Uncovering Your Purpose

Leider, Richard J. Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

We can discover this meaning in life in three different ways: (1) by doir, deed; (2) by experiencing a value; and (3) by suffering.

Viktor Frankl

Where do you start? How do you decide where to commit yourself? How do you uncover your purpose or calling? Many of us are starved for alignment in our lives. Purpose can serve as an aligning focus for our gifts, passions, and values. The most effective people know how to focus their daily activities while keeping their eye on a longer-range purpose, the ideals they want to align their lives around.

Purpose has a way of focusing time and energies around itself; that is the real power behind the purpose! It often involves refocusing our lives in order to bring out our voice and full music. This chapter will help you identify what moves you, show three ways to find your purpose, and challenge you to simplify your life to focus on your purpose.

Our life work is the purpose we live by transformed into action. If we open our eyes to the world around us, we often notice the endless ”work” that calls for our energies and talents.

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Chapter 1 The Purpose Moment

Leider, Richard J. Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

I was just trying to get home from work.

Rosa Parks

Purpose is fundamental to human life. It is what makes us human. Purpose is not only what makes us human, it is the one thing that cannot be taken from us. Purpose gives us the will to live or to persevere. It gives us a reason to get up in the morning. Purpose gives us courage.

Most of us want to know that there is a purpose to life—that our being here does mean something and that what we do matters. Most of us want our lives to matter, and we want to live courageously.

Purpose is one of the chief requisites for courage in life. A constant in the lives of people who experience a sense ofcourageisthe ”purpose moment” —moments of meaning. This chapter shows the importance of purpose moments to the purpose quest and helps you to recognize and create such moments in your own life.

Rosa Parks had a purpose moment that ultimately changed a nation. She was arrested for refusing to give up her bus seat to a white passenger in Montgomery, Alabama, on December 1, 1955. This single act of courage sparked a bus boycott that led to the integration of Alabama’s bus system and paved the way for the civil rights movement in the United States.

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Chapter 5 Repacking Your Work Bag

Leider, Richard J. Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

Since our only possession is our life, or rather our living, our most fundamental question is “How will I do my living?”

The quest for the answer is a lifelong journey. But people don’t fully commit to it until they’re ready — not one moment sooner. Being ready usually means feeling a level of pain or frustration for which repacking is a remedy.

Readiness emerges at various times during our lives. The common theme is a period of transition. We find ourselves in that in-between state in life, leaving behind an outgrown but still perfectly serviceable past, and moving toward a future that resists all efforts to bring it into clear focus. As we contemplate what’s ahead, we feel a strange combination of disorientation and excitement.

Gazing back on our lives is more than just sifting through memories. It also involves poring over images of what the good life has meant to us at various points along the way. We recall the happy times and wonder how many more of them there will be. We review our achievements in life and work and wonder if our best days are behind us — or perhaps, ahead.

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Chapter 4 Repacking Your Relationship Bag

Leider, Richard J. Berrett-Koehler Publishers ePub

In decades of regular “inventure” treks to Tanzania, Richard has had numerous opportunities to live, work, and play with the Hadza, one of the last hunter-gatherer peoples still extant on the planet. The Hadza live essentially as they have for tens of thousands of years, in kin groups of several dozen, hunting and gathering food from their environment. It has been, for time immemorial, a completely sustainable lifestyle, one in which every person has a role and purpose and is supported by the entire group of which they are a part. When Richard and his fellow “inventurers” spend time with the Hadza, they inevitably feel a sense of “coming home” to a way of life that seems remarkably familiar, in spite of how different it is from how we in the contemporary world live our lives.

But, of course, that’s really no surprise. The way the Hadza live is how human beings survived together for almost all of our common history. The bonds they share amongst each other are, to a great extent, “hardwired” into us. We are built, in other words, to form deep and abiding relationships among those close to us that enable us to survive and thrive together in the world. We are defined to a much greater extent than we tend to acknowledge in our busy, 21st century lives, by our “tribe.”

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