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Posted by Jason Fonceca on Oct 8, 2011 in Artistic Inspiration, Artists, Confidence, Life Coaching, Life Purpose, Marketing Is An Art, Personal Growth, Purposeful Art, Self-Improvement, SpiritSentient.com, Value | 16 comments
There are all kinds of exercises that help you find your life purpose.Tribal leaders have been helping the next generation with it for ages. In our current fast-moving society, we still have leaders helping us with this, and now I’m throwing my hat into the ring.
My method is inspired by a combination of valuable exercises by these guys: Jonathan Mead, Mark Silver, Tad Hargrave and Steve Pavlina. They’re brilliant and each focus on their own specific styles.
"It’s something that, at the end of the day, makes
you feel like you’ve made a difference." – Jonathan Mead, Reclaim Your Dreams.
"Your deepest wound is your truest niche." – Tad Hargrave, Your Deepest Wound Is Your Niche.
"It has to do with your core essence and your deepest passion. It’s also your biggest need, and the key to your spiritual development." – Mark Silver, Getting To The Core
"If you want to discover your true purpose in life, you must first empty your mind of all the false purposes you’ve been taught" – Steve Pavlina, How To Discover Your Life Purpose In About 20 Minutes
I’ve taken what I’ve learned from these leaders in their field, and refined it into 3 steps (and a couple sub-steps.)
*Update: There is someone out there who seems to have a very similar vibe about this that I do. Her name’s Emilie Wapnick and she runs PuttyLife.com, and she is all about helping Multipontialites create a cohesive, supportive business out of their many, many passions. Incredible! She calls them Renaissance Businesses, and I’m very eager to check out her stuff. She’s all about integrating a number of qualities + passions, and so am I. She refers to creating an Over-Arching theme, which is very similar to my Common Thread concept.
It’s fun to list things you like, have, or are good at!
If I asked you right now, "what unique things do you have to offer your corner of the workd?" would you be able to answer smoothly and confidently?
This exercise will help you get clear on your unique value, which is vital to finding your unique purpose.
Grab a piece of paper, divide it into 3 columns, and jot down any strengths you have in these three areas: physical strengths, mental strengths, and spiritual strengths. Doing this will give you a very clear snapshot of what unique blend of value and skills you offer the world. More on this in Secrets Of Starving.Artist Syndrome.
For now, here`s an example which we`ll be using for the following steps.
Like a word-search, crossword, or a game of Guess Who?, finding the common threads is fun too!
Looking through your list may look like a chaotic mish-mash of all kinds of skills. The beauty of life is that it gives us very unique blends, and when people nail theirs just right, the whole world appreciates. Eccentric Catholic-raised burlesque-dancer, Lady Gaga has a very unique blend of characteristics, that many people would dismiss. As does outcasted and bullied horse-farmer, Prince Poppycock (his Bohemian Rhapsody cover will blow your mind). As does childhood cocaine-dealer Jay-Z.
You and I have our own unique blends as well, waiting to propel us to our own personal success, the trick is to find the common thread.
For Gaga the common thread is art-freak: a unique blend of music, art, sex, and celebrity. For Poppycock it’s theatrical, operatic dandy. For Jay-Z it’s hip-hop mogul and trendsetter. These things all seem normal now, but when these people were finding their purpose, it was anything but. They had to find a common thread that allowed them to explore their passions, no matter what they were.
Look for common patterns and trends that unite and harmonize your mish-mash of qualities. Life gives them to us for a reason, nothing is wasted.
By looking at our example list, I was able to find many qualities that related to teaching, many qualities that related to comedy/performing, and many that related to computers/internet. There were a few that were super-general like "love" and a few that were super unique like "obsessed with cars and girls". That’s fine. You want to narrow it down as much as you can to about 3 patterns, but a couple tricky one’s is fine. In fact, in this case, I used the unique obsessed with cars and girls trait to really guide the entire vision, centering it on a Men’s Magazine.
The guy who had all these qualities would probably feel very confident publishing an online magazine. He has most of the tools, he has strengths in all the right areas, and it lets him express about his obsession all at once.
Finally, have fun refining your purpose into something sexy.
So you’ve listed your qualities and gotten clear on your unique value-blend. You’ve found the common thread and you can tell what you’re meant to do and who you’re meant to help. The last step is to polish it. Tighten it up. You want to craft a mission statement and refine it into an a pitch. (Note: pitches are just a way of communicating a lot of clear things about you and your art, in a very short time.), which is a basically a sentence that summarizes your purpose in an appealing way. Finishing this step is really what gives you the confidence needed to live life on your own terms.
When someone asks what do you do, or if you know why you’re here, you can falter and mumble "Oh, well, uh…I help people with my cooking, and my computers, and my music, and um… I’m really smart." Or you can respond "I’m DJ Food and I help caterers and concerts come together, expanding their craft through technology." – The polished version is punchy, effective, and peaks people`s interest, the unpolished version… not-so-much. The polished version = confidence for you, the unpolished version equals awkward conversation, unclear communication and insecurity.
In our example, I polished "I run an interactive online men’s mag from my apartment" into 3 powerful pitches.
So follow the 3 steps above, and share your creative pitches with the community here! For everyone who posts a pitch below, I`ll personally give feedback.
The world can use more clear-minded people, who know their own value, and offer it confidently, and this exercise is provided to help you be one of them. Rock on, World-Shaper.