I’ve been writing a lot about purpose – what it is…why it’s important…and how to find it.
(You can find those previous posts on my blog here: https://soulfireshift.com/blog)
😩 I’ve felt drawn to this subject because feeling a lack of purpose in our lives is often a painful experience.
It was for me before I found my purpose, and I see it in my coaching clients, as well.
To me, purpose is that thing that lights us up and gives our lives direction and meaning.
☀️ It’s the way we express the best of who we are, and it’s our unique way of bringing light to the world.
What I haven’t yet written about, though, is how to actually define your purpose and how to get it right.
Let me start with the latter part, and then I’ll give you 3 ways you can define your purpose.
❓ So first: what’s the 1 rule you need to follow to get it right?
👉 It has to feel true to you.
Let me show you with some Q&A examples:
Q: Can my purpose change over time?
A: Does it feel true to you that your purpose can change? If so, then yes.
Q: What if I define my purpose one way, but then later feel like that’s not accurate. Is that ok? Does that make me flakey if I change it?
A: Does it feel true to you that you can define your purpose one way and later change your mind? If so, then yes, it’s ok.
A: Does it feel true to you that it makes you flakey if you change your mind? If not, then no, it does not make you flakey. (Maybe it just makes you an evolving, growing human being?)
Q: Can I have more than 1 purpose?
A: Does it feel true to you that you have more than 1 purpose? If so, then yes.
Q: Does my purpose have to be something big that changes the world?
A: Does it feel true to you that it has to be something big that changes the world? If not, then no.
Q: Do I have to know my purpose? I’m happy with my life and feeling like I need to know my purpose just feels like pressure and existential angst.
A: Does it feel true to you that you have to know your purpose? If not, then no.
You’re in the driver’s seat! You get to decide what’s right and true for you!
🔥 There’s no way to get it wrong unless you let culture or other people impose a purpose on you or rules about your purpose that don’t feel true to you.
Ok, now that we have the 1️⃣ rule out of the way, here are 3️⃣ ways you can define your purpose, if that feels important to you:
1️⃣ Define It By Your Values:
Famous Example: Nelson Mandela
“I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and achieve. But if need be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”
❤️ Nelson Mandela defined his purpose through his most cherished values of freedom, harmony, and equality, and they were the backbone of all of his actions.
What are your most important values and how do you apply them in your life?
Here are some examples of how you could use your values to define your purpose:
✅ “To spread love and joy everywhere I go.”
✅ “To show up as my genuine, true self no matter the situation, and encourage others to show up authentically through my words, actions, and state of being.”
✅ “To stand for justice and the equal application of the law to all people regardless of financial position, social status, race, religion, or any other personal quality.”
✅ “To make the world a brighter, happier place through all my interactions with others.”
✅ “To connect people and create community in a world that’s becoming increasingly isolated and fearful of each other.”
2️⃣ Define It By Your Vocation:
Famous Example: Oprah Winfrey
“[My purpose is] to inspire, to teach, and to lead people to the best of themselves.”
💲 Oprah’s purpose is tied to the way she makes money, but anyone can see that her work is simply the actionable expression of who she is at her core. It’s not forced or fake or disingenuous.
Her work is an expression of her best qualities – her natural gifts, the key skills she’s honed throughout her life, and her most altruistic beliefs and values.
💛 If your work is an expression of your true self, like Oprah, you might define your purpose through what you do.
Here are some examples:
✅ Spa Owner:
“My purpose is to help people relax, renew and restore so that they can go back out in the world with a full tank and exude a more peaceful energy.”
✅ Business Development Executive:
“My purpose is to build bridges between my company and others and to create win-win partnerships that result in greater abundance for all.”
✅ Home Builder:
“My purpose is to use the materials of the earth to create beautiful spaces for people to live and flourish.”
“My purpose is to tell stories that create more compassion in the world by helping people connect to their own humanity and the humanity of others.”
“My purpose is to be a check on lies, corruption, and unethical behavior in the government so as to continually drive our nation towards being that ‘more perfect union’ we aspire to be.”
✅ Stay-at-Home Parent
“My purpose is to create a safe, nurturing, and loving environment that supports the growth and development of my child.”
3️⃣ Define It By Your Spiritual Beliefs
Famous Example: Martha Beck
“To achieve a level of consciousness where I’m conscious of the presence of the divine and to let that spread out from me if it decides to happen that way.”
Perhaps your connection to Source/Spirit/Universe/Divine/Braham/Allah/Yahweh/God/______ (insert your name for it here) is the most important aspect of your life.
💫 In that case, your relationship to your spiritual beliefs might define your purpose.
Here are some examples of how you might do that:
✅ “To allow Source to use me as a vessel to spread more light in the world in whatever way it sees I’m best fit to do so.”
✅ “To live the teachings of the Buddah through my thoughts, words, and actions.”
✅ “To follow in Jesus’s footsteps and see and treat all people as living embodiments of God.”
✅ “To connect so deeply with nature that I feel a oneness with all of creation.”
✅ “To achieve a level of faith in ______ (your name for the higher power here) such that I can release my fears and trust that all is as it’s meant to be, even if I don’t understand it.”
For me, I currently have two ways that I define my purpose – one that’s inspired by Martha Beck, but that’s based on my values instead of my spiritual beliefs, and one that’s based on my vocation as a coach.
💜 Here’s the first: “To connect to my own courage and confidence so deeply that it inspires other women to connect to theirs, if that’s how it’s meant to spread out.”
🤩 And the second: “To help purpose-driven women take the bold dream that lives in their heart and make it a reality that lives in the world.”
Notice that they both have to do with courage and confidence. The first one focuses on my own inner-work and the second one focuses on my work in the world.
I hope this gives you some ideas for how you can define your purpose in a way that’s most meaningful to you.
But if none of these resonate, define it in any way that feels true to you!
⭐️ Remember – that’s the only rule that matters when it comes to getting your purpose right!
🔥 P.S. Looking for 1:1 guidance on finding your purpose, or bringing your purpose to life? Let’s chat about coaching! Book a free Meet & Greet call with me and let’s see if we’re a fit! ===> https://calendly.com/soulfireshiftcoaching/30-minute-meet-and-greet