Do you have a purpose statement?
I thought about this while doing some planning for The Bold Life and a round of life mapping for myself over the weekend. I was working on an overall mission statement when it occurred to me that I needed this for *myself.* What is my Purpose Statement? What is it that is driving me forward? I took some time to dive in and define mine:
My purpose is to steward my gifts to tell stories, be a light in a world that can be dark, and encourage women to live the bold life they are worthy of.
Be a light.
A tall order and most certainly not something I can accomplish in a day, but my purpose statement can serve as my north star. I can measure the actions I take each day against my purpose statement to ensure I’m in alignment with my overall goals.
Do you have a purpose statement?
If not, here is how to create your purpose statement.
Identify your purpose.
You may not know your purpose when you sit down to write your purpose statement. At least, you may not think you know your purpose. It took me years to identify my purpose and it took even longer for me to get bold enough to pursue it. But I have a theory that we all know what we were put here to do. It’s that thing we do in our free time or when we know we should be doing something else, we just can’t pull ourselves away from it. It’s that thing we daydream about while we’re at work or sitting in traffic, that thing we find ourselves wishing we could do or telling people we would pursue if a very specific chain of events fell into place.
If you’re still struggling to pinpoint your purpose, try asking. Sit in prayer and ask God. He may not answer right away, but He will answer. If prayer isn’t your thing, try meditating or even ask your friends a couple of simple questions: “What do you think I’m good at? What is that thing you would pay me to do for you?” You’ll start to see a pattern in your answers. Do they turn to you for career advice? Are you the one they ask to make a special gift for someone they love? There’s your purpose.
Identify the action words.
Now that you know your purpose, what action words can you associate with it? Is your purpose to help people plan celebrations of big life events? Then maybe your action word is “celebrate.” If you’re like me and your purpose involves coaching others, then maybe your word is “lead” or perhaps “direct.” Make these action words words you identify with, that make you want to get moving, words that make you want to take – you guessed it – action. They should fire you up and resonate deeply.
Write your purpose statement.
Start drafting. Start writing out sentences and trying out different turns of phrases. You might sit down and write out your purpose statement in one fell swoop. You might need to come back to it a few times. Just start drafting. You’ll know when you nail it.
Don’t be afraid to edit it.
I happen to believe that we have different purposes for different seasons of life. My purpose now has shifted from what it was ten years ago. If I wrote a purpose statement in my twenties, it would have still had something to do with telling stories, but not in the way I feel called to tell them now. I wouldn’t be coaching women on their bold life, either, but rather in fitness and nutrition. As you change and grow as a human, so will your purpose statement. Don’t be afraid to edit it.
Now go on. Write your purpose statement. Then, place it places where you can see it. I wrote mine in my journal, on a post-it note at my desk, and even in dry erase marker on my mirror so I can read it every morning. Putting it where you can see it is a visual reminder to align your actions with your purpose. And once your actions start to align with purpose… watch the magic flow.