The ability to choose how to live your life is one of the greatest gifts you can have as a human. The decision to be a parent or not to be a parent; the decision to attend college or to pursue an apprenticeship; or the decision to defy the odds by designing your own future. Sure, the benefits of making the right decisions are enormous, and the sense of fulfillment is even better.
But how would you react if you were forced to live a lie? As an example, consider the following:
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You are compelled to learn how to be a hair stylist and make it your profession. No, it's not your side job. Worse, you are told to forget about your loved ones and marry someone you despise. Forget everything you've learned and loved, and focus solely on this career and relationship.
The amount of anguish and physical pain you may experience is comparable to someone taking away a valuable object or your livelihood. This could result in anxiety, depression, self-doubt, and a downward spiral into a negative web.
However, there are people who, willingly or unwillingly, live their lives in accordance with the dictates and preferences of society. I'm referring to people who are constantly living outside of their purpose and are dissatisfied with it. While sadness is an equally common emotion as happiness, a constant state of sadness will cause you to fall into a pattern of automatic negative thoughts that will be more difficult to break.
So, how do you go about fixing this? How do you transition from a life of false identities to one that honors your own calling and beliefs?
Without further ado, here are 13 ways that living with a sense of purpose can make your life happier and more fulfilling:
1. You have a sense of being grounded in a larger-than-life calling
While living with purpose does not guarantee higher pay or fancy property, it does foster a desire to be a part of something bigger than yourself. You want to be a part of movements that make a positive difference in the world and leave a legacy for future generations.
Call it faith, mindfulness, or whatever you want to associate yourself with. This sense of anchor allows you to navigate through life when you can visualize your existence on earth for a specific reason, allowing you to devote more time to finding your calling.
2. You assist others in living their purpose by empowering them
Living in your purpose has the advantage of revealing your strengths and making you more willing to serve your community. This is nearly impossible if you lack self-awareness and are unable to apply your skills to helping others.
Even if you have the skills to assist others, living an unintentional life can cast a cloud of pessimism over you, blinding you to the opportunities to assist others in growing.
3. You interact with others from a place of high self-esteem
Your experiences shape your personality and attitudes as you go through life. Negative events, on the other hand, make you more vulnerable to self-doubt and crippling mindset challenges, which can cause your self-esteem to plummet.
Living with a sense of purpose is a powerful way to heal a low sense of self-esteem. When you change your perspective on how adversity affects you, your confidence grows and you feel competent enough to deal with setbacks and even act as a change agent in situations with unknown outcomes.
4. Your Physical and Mental Health Will Appreciate It
Yes, your mental health is as vital as your physical health. Living a non-chosen lifestyle can lead to serious mental health problems. Anxiety begins to attack when you notice an increase in excessive worry, irritability, and lack of concentration, among other symptoms.
According to a Harvard article, researchers studied the risk of cardiovascular death in people who reported living with a sense of purpose versus those who did not, and discovered that the risk of death was 20% lower in those who reported living with purpose.
5. It's Easier to Let Go of Failure
Because you are living with a purpose, life becomes easier to navigate. It's worth noting that I didn't say “easy,” because it's never easy.
This is because pursuing a life aligned with your purpose will stretch you and demand more of you. You will be expected to grow and to commit to ongoing personal development.
However, because you can approach life as an adventure rather than a “all or nothing” mindset, it is easier to let go of failure without allowing it to fester into an emotional wound.
It is easier to let go of failure when, despite a few setbacks, you believe you are on a creative, professional path that is tailor-made for you.
6. It Becomes Easier to Forgive Others and Let Go of Bitterness
When you no longer have to carry year-long grudges and misunderstandings that have caused you unhappiness, life becomes more peaceful. This is not to say that you should become numb to injustice or deliberate disrespect from others. Forgiveness does not absolve a wrongdoing or action. People who live a purposeful life, on the other hand, are more likely to prefer peace over conflict.
According to Andrea Brandt Ph.D. M.F.T., you may feel unwilling to forgive even though you know you need to.
However, acknowledging that what has been done is done, releasing the hurt and suffering caused, and growing from the ordeal takes time.
Living with a purpose makes this process easier because you are more likely to recognize that there is no such thing as a “perfect” human.
7. Gratitude Becomes an Important Aspect of Your Life
Surprisingly, living a meaningful life allows your heart to be grateful. When gratitude comes before your wants and desires, you are more likely to live fully in the present, savoring and enjoying the relationships and possessions you do have.
When you live a purposeful life, you recognize the distinction between needs and wants and make a daily effort to shift your focus away from what you don't have.
8. You Exhibit Positive Behaviors
When you live a happier life, you can use healthy coping strategies to deal with stress. Stephanie Hooker of Psychology Today says:
This includes more exercise, meditation, and mindfulness, as well as less drinking, smoking, and other risky behaviors that endanger your health and safety.
9. You Broaden Your Perspective
In contrast to living in a world where everything is black and white, you become acutely aware of the nuances, undertones, and challenges that plague daily communications, intercultural communications, and even business operations.
Having an open mind leads to a desire for a deeper sense of connection and understanding of the world around us, allowing for a higher level of thinking for better results in your career and business.
10. You Gain More Empathy for Others
Rather than blaming others for their inability to “pull themselves up by their bootstraps,” you understand that life is not a race.
You are aware that everyone is equal and experiences discomfort at times. You are also aware that raising mentally strong and balanced individuals who will go on to achieve greater things in life necessitates loving and nurturing environments rather than critical ones.
11. You live a life based on your values
Have you ever met someone who lives and breathes their core values? That is what living with a purpose accomplishes.
Assume you are exposed to social issues that affect both local and global communities. When you live with a purpose, your work will naturally gravitate toward solving these issues. This integration becomes more noticeable as you struggle to separate what you do from how you are called to serve.
12. You Are More Dedicated to Your Career
When you are out of sync, you miss out on unassuming job opportunities that disguise themselves as challenges or simple introductions. You take risks and make rash decisions regarding your career and/or business.
However, success comes from within before it manifests externally, and the only way to know and acknowledge this is to live your life purposefully.
13. Despite Uncertainties, You Gain Clarity About the Future
Uncertainty will always be a part of life. However, it is in these moments that we either realize unspoken potential or allow opportunities to slip through our fingers.
A life lived with purpose, on the other hand, recognizes uncertainty as a necessary step toward achieving something greater. This encourages you to approach life with genuine curiosity and wonder rather than anxiety and pessimism.
You must be crystal clear about how you want your life to look and how you want to live it.
Whether you follow trends or break societal rules, it is your responsibility to find personal joy and fulfillment.
After all, you only get one life, and you should make the most of it.
How to Be Less Clingy: Interpersonal conflict is when two people are at odds with one another. For example, two friends are fighting because one has borrowed something from the other friend, but has failed to return it. This can be very frustrating, especially to one who feels they are in the right. When this happens, the person in the wrong will often make concessions to avoid conflict in the future. Read more.
Life Changes Be Ready: Everyone knows that life is full of unexpected surprises, but that doesn't mean that they don't come as a shock to some people. While some people are 100% okay with changes, it's not uncommon for people to feel resistance to them. Everyone has different ways of coping with change, but sometimes people need a little extra help to go through it. Content: If you ever need to change your home decor, it would be hard to move things around. While you can certainly hire professional movers to do this for you, it's more cost-effective if you learn how to use moving blankets. Not only will this allow you to transfer items that are more delicate than others, but you'll save money on labor! Note that these sentences are structured in three or more paragraphs. Read more.
How to Scare Someone: Grab a knife. Crouch out of the way, towards the victim. Make sure he or she can see you. Start subtly jabbing the knife at him or her. If the victim moves around, move with him or her. If he or she runs, give chase. If he or she hides, find him or her. If he or she fights, use the knife. If he or she gives up, leave him or her alone. Read more.
Need Change: Yes, that is correct. You do need change. You need it a lot. I even know a few people who's lives have been changed by it. But who am I? Who am I to say this? Well I am a comedian, a funny person. I am a stand up comedian coming from a place of truth. This change is going to affect you, you're going to need it. Read more.
Personal Challenges: While some people may say challenges are not for everyone, I disagree! We all have our own challenges we're facing and we face them every day. For me, challenge comes every day when I wake up and go to work. I work at a clothing store and each day is different. I get up and think about what I need to do and what I need to accomplish for the day. Then, I go to work and deal with customers and try to meet their demands and try and keep them happy and coming back! It's a fun and different challenge each and every day and I feel like I know what I'm doing more and more with each passing day. Read more.
You have heard it all before: "Live life to the fullest", "follow your dreams", "be who you are" and "if it is meant to be, it will be". These are all wonderful quotes that are meant to help you live a happy life but they miss the point. Our lives are interconnected with each other and with the world.
No matter how hard you think you try, there’s always going to be a certain level of stress in your life. And when stress gets out of hand, it can start to negatively affect your life. But this doesn’t have to be the case. There are some easy steps you can take to improve your life in the long run, and we’ve found a few that can help you enjoy a better life and get rid of stress.