Processing Your Purpose in Life: 3 Steps to Help You Slow Down and Focus on The Good Stuff


The idea of finding a purpose in life might seem overwhelming sometimes, but by taking some steps to slow down and focus on true happiness (whatever that looks like for each of us!) the good stuff in life is within reach.

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Topic Of Discussion

“Life comes at you fast. If you don’t slow down and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” Ferris Bueller was on to something…and he didn’t even know what the 2020s would have in store! With the pressures and stresses of life today, it can be easy – maybe even a good idea sometimes – to just go with the flow. But if we let life come at us fast all the time, we might not only miss it… We might lose our sense of purpose in all the hustle and bustle. 

The idea of finding purpose might seem overwhelming sometimes – even lofty or a little woo woo. But studies have shown that finding a purpose in life plays a big role in not only improving mental health, but physical health too. Taking time to connect with the values and passions that give each of us an individual purpose might not only be fulfilling, but essential to our well-being.

So what to do if you’re feeling out of sync with your purpose? Or maybe you’re unsure of what your purpose even is to begin with?! You’re not alone. For many people, finding purpose is a process. These three steps might help life come at you slower and make your process easier.

Get in touch with your feelings

The tough thing about opening ourselves up to our feelings is that doing so forces us to face not only our happy feelings, but the sad or bad ones that might cause us discomfort too. Still, our feelings – when we’re able to be vulnerable enough to reflect on them – can tell us a lot about our purpose. In other words, weeding through what makes us feel sad or bad makes room for the things that make us happiest to grow! So try daily journaling, mindfulness practices, or visual tools like the feelings wheel to take a good, hard look at what your feelings are telling you.

Reflect on what makes you happiest

Once you can identify what’s making you feel happiest, the process of getting back in touch with or finding your purpose gets more fun. When you know what aspects of happiness (or emotions) you value, you can better prioritize the experiences that create the positive emotions you desire. That’s why getting clear on your happiness values (or emotional values) is a key step on the pathway to happiness. In simple terms, once you know what makes you happy, you can really start doing the things – or connect with the values and passions – that make you feel happy. 

Put it all into practice

So, imagine you’ve gotten in touch with your feelings and identified the values and passions that make you tick…. When you really think about it…the sky’s the limit from here. Of course we all have responsibilities to ourselves and others whether they be personal, professional, or financial. But by cultivating our joys and drawing focus to them, we’re free to explore opportunities (no matter how big or small!) that can align our happiness with those responsibilities. With a focused, true sense of purpose that’s ready to grow and evolve with us…we might just want life to come at us fast.

Wrapping it up

When life gets messy and just getting through the day makes it hard to even think about finding your purpose, our supportive therapists here at Tri-Star Counseling can offer you guidance as you pave your path towards a happier life. Schedule an appointment today, so you can start focusing on the good stuff.

Brent Metcalf, LCSW

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