The essential question of all time is, does purpose exist? If so, how do I find my purpose?
This question was burning within me since I’ve been a young lad – and I discovered it.
Look at the nearest plant, tree, animal around you – anything in nature. We don’t need to ask these things, Do you have a purpose?
They are fulfilling their purpose spontaneously, by nature, without the external drive to find it.
The funny paradox is, you are already filling and fulfilling your purpose by even being here. It’s done. Your very existence itself is fulfilling the purpose of your existence. It’s silly, it’s crazy, its foundational, and it’s essential. It’s big and obvious, when you get it.
And when you don’t get it, it can be one of the most painful things within your being.
Many times, when we don’t feel we’re on purpose, on track with what we’re here for, or perhaps we don’t even know what we’re here for, we suffer. We may have been living years of our life, feeling somehow empty and devoid of higher meaning and purpose. Many of us aim to fill this void with all types of distractions: – food, booze, sex, drugs, TV. It’s endless. We use whatever means we have to somehow cover up this pain, and fill this emptiness of not knowing what our deepest purpose is.
Now, my friend, if we can start from the premise, the humorous premise that being here already is fulfilling our purpose, we can let ourselves off the hook to try to find something to live for.
I’m giving you permission right now: let go of the idea that you need to find something that drives you, to have some great meaning, some great, earth-shattering ‘Ah-ha!’ moment.
Now, having said that, one of the things I’ve discovered in my work with entrepreneurs, in my work with those who have a sense of leadership and strong creation, is that there’s a natural energy we all have to move forward.
So, could there be a purposefulness inherent in our nature that’s already moving forward, that doesn’t need our intellectual addition, or our emotional addition of purpose onto it?
Perhaps what our nature requires is for us to relax and feel what is wanting to emerge within us now. Not what we want to happen, but how our natural purposefulness is emerging without our effort.
A way to feel into your natural purpose, which is very interesting, is to ask yourself this question:
What did you not get enough of as a child that you wanted more of?
Did you want more attention, acknowledgement from your parental figures?
Did you want more touch, and to be seen for who you are?
Did you need more direction, and clarity, and words of encouragement?
Perhaps you felt you needed more challenge, and not so much coddling, so that you could grow some grit and self-resourcefulness in life.
Perhaps you needed more tenderness, just being loved for who you are, without needing to fulfill any contract, or get any marks, or any of that.
What did you want more of, my friend, that you didn’t get enough of? Just feel for that for a moment.
Why am I asking you this?
Because I found that it’s part of the secret to your individual purposefulness.
One of the steps lies in this search, this inquiry.
For me, as a child, I wanted more acknowledgement. My parents were lifetime entrepreneurs, working their buns off on all types of businesses, from morning till night, seven days a week at times, for years on end. As their child, I wanted to be seen, I wanted to be felt, I wanted to be acknowledged for who I was, not just as another thing to do in the day, or someone to take care of.
What’s yours? What’s your signature black hole of emotion? Your signature core wound emotionally, the thing that you did not get, that you really needed more of?
Take a moment to be honest and feel for that.
Now, here’s the secret I’ve discovered of purpose.
I wanted more acknowledgement, so guess what my purpose is? It’s to give acknowledgement.
It’s to recognize that void, and instead of trying to fill it with women, sex, booze, chocolate, cars, mansions, whatever – turn it around into a place to live from, to gift from.
What’s interesting is that these areas of our brain where we felt a lack as a child, the dendrites didn’t develop fully – so it can be hard to even appreciate getting those things that we wanted more of as a child.
Even when we get that acknowledgement or support or care later on in life, it can feel fulfilling only temporarily.
So, when people acknowledge me now, “Satyen, you are this. You’ve accomplished this,” I feel happy to a certain degree, but it becomes empty and neutral very quickly as well, because I don’t even have the dendrites of full appreciation for this acknowledgement built into my system.
If someone fully says over and over, “Satyen, you are this and this and this,” I have doubt that comes up. It feels like I don’t even trust the acknowledgement when it’s coming in. You have that side inside of yourself as well, I’m sure.
The Warrior Sage secret, the transcendent secret I’ve discovered is, this void is not meant to be filled. The beast is not meant to be continuously fed – the beast of undeserving, the beast of non-acknowledgement.
The beast of not getting what you wanted as a child is not meant to be fed forever.
Because its hunger is endless. It continuously wants to feed.
Instead, think of it as your cornucopia to give from.
Now I make my practice acknowledging others, seeing them for who they are. “This is what I see in you, my friend. These are the gifts I feel in you. These are the gifts I see in you, my son, my daughter, my wife, my teammates. These are your powerful attributes, these are the errors that you need refining.”
Because I didn’t get those things early in my life, I have a very sharp clarity around what others need to feel fully acknowledged.
Whatever you didn’t get enough of in life, you will likely have a sharp perception of others who are in similar situations. And you probably are already giving them the very thing that they need.
In other words, it’s your purpose to fill other’s void. Your purpose, my friend, is to give the very thing you did not get enough of; to not be a constant vacuum trying to fill that within yourself, but becoming a watering can, going around and sharing the very thing that you yearned for.
Perhaps you didn’t get enough direction and clarity. So, now, you offer direction and clarity as a gift to others, professionally, directly, cleanly, impeccably.
Now, when you do this well, you can turn your need for clarity, for acknowledgement (or whatever it is for you) into a lifestyle of giving. You can say, “How can I make this even stronger, better?” You can create an artistry around it, create magnificence around your ability to acknowledge, to love, to give the very thing that you didn’t get enough of.
People can make great livelihoods out of this; artisans, artists, entertainers, perhaps you yourself are making art out of it right now. That’s a way to transcend the emotional, gaping hole at the core of being.
Fulfillment then comes from seeing other people being lifted up, nourished and filled by the sharing that you have, by the gifting that you bring to their hearts, their souls, their well-being, the direction in life.
Continue to hone that art. Serve others with dedication, with loyalty, with honour. And then, when you’ve done this long enough, when you’ve done this with quality, you will be on the path of continuous fulfillment, not temporary highs and lows.
You won’t be neurotically seeking mother figures, father figures, guru figures, teacher figures, saviour figures, lovers to fill you; you’ll be the source, you’ll be the one that fills.
Finally, to really dial it in, ask yourself this: What must I do today, TODAY, right now, so that I can live, love and die completely, without any regret?
That’s a really sharp question. That’s the challenge you give yourself daily.
This is the challenge I offer myself. What must I do today to love fully? Who must I love fully? Is there anyone that could use some love in my circle that I could give fully to? What must I do to live fully?
For me, today,I’m going to celebrate with my wife. We’ve had all types of events and family members over for the last few weeks. Tonight, it’s going to be just me and her.
So, my friend, my challenge to you is to ask yourself what you must do today to live, to love, to die complete, with regret.
Go ahead and follow through on it, and watch what doorway of fulfillment opens up for you.