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Find Your Life Purpose Using These 3 Simple & Effective Strategies

Find Your Life Purpose Using These 3 Simple & Effective Strategies

Discovering your life purpose can be known as the billion-dollar question, because it can cost you time and effort trying to find it. For some, it has taken days, months, or even years of frustration.

The funny thing about purpose is that most people look for it in a job or attach it to titles, but your purpose is something that has always been with you since the moment you arrived to this earth. It is a gift that is inside of you. One of the key principles is to start by looking inside of yourself. This helps you to focus on your unique abilities and when you do, there is a flow and a rhythm that leads you exactly to your purpose and ideas naturally begin to fall in place.

While finding your life purpose seemed like it used to take a lifetime, that process is now considered a thing of the past. With the rise of coaches from all walks of life and the world wide web that has a plethora of information available for you to embark upon this journey, the process has been simplified to answer the following questions that so many like you have such as, “What is my purpose?” or “What have I been placed on this earth to do?” or “What is my calling?”

Purpose: Why Is It So Important?

Purpose can be described as the unspoken blueprint of life that gives you vision on where you want to go and what you want to be. Without it, many people wander around aimlessly like walking around in a circle going from job to job and pursuing higher titles thinking that they will find it there when all along, it was always inside of them. But the journey to uncovering it may not always seem as simple and it may not always come overnight.

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The truth is that the world we live in can be so immersed to instant gratification, that the enjoyment of the process of discovering one’s purpose can actually frustrate many and some even give up. But thank God, there are great leaders and influential figures such as Jim Rohn, Tony Robbins, Lisa Nichols, and Rick Warren who is well known for his national best-seller, “The Purpose-Driven Life.” These leaders dedicate their lives to helping others pursue their purpose by writing books, providing motivational messages, and assisting others with life coaching to help you move forward to living out your purpose.

While finding your purpose and living it out can seem like a tedious and rather daunting process, it no longer has to be. Here are 3 Simple and Effective Ways to help you get started:

  1. Consider What You Are Naturally Skilled At

When you think about your natural talents and abilities, they come to you like second nature and without any formal training. Without anyone ever giving you a compliment on it, you know you are great at this. Since talents are so diverse and there are a multitude of them in one person, a gift is a single thing that you do so well at that you are naturally sought after for it—even if you have not even formally been paid for it.

Action Item: Take out a sheet of paper and make a list of that one thing that you know without doubting or hesitating that you do naturally. This will help you focus on narrowing down what your innate gift is.

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When you focus and zero in on that one thing, which is your gift that you were born with, it will lead you into all other areas of productivity. Focusing on your gift is literally the difference between being effective, as opposed to being busy.

  1. Think About Who Your Gift Could Serve

Answering this question brings your mind into thinking about the greater good, which is wrapped up in your purpose. It helps you to begin to think of the many ways that your gift can serve a community of people.

This will also help you to begin thinking of the avenues that you can take to get started living out your purpose today. For example, if you are great at painting naturally and have dreams of having your art exhibited in museums to help others learn about culture. Perhaps, you may start at your local museum and expand the knowledge of those visiting by introducing unique pieces to be featured in the gallery and explaining the inspiration behind it.

While you are continuing to study and hone in on your craft to a level of mastery, it will also give you an opportunity to share with others and prepare for your debut of explaining your own pieces in the future. This also helps you to remain occupied and focused on your ultimate vision and attach the necessary goals to them as well. After all, you will already be living out your purpose, but on a smaller scale for the moment.

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  1. Get Your Beginning and End in Mind

Many motivational speakers, coaches, and entrepreneurs speak so eloquently of this phrase, “Get your beginning and end in mind” as it relates to one’s vision or ultimate goal in life.

When we see so many people working hard, we have learned to rationalize and reason that there is a reason for all of this and that is a goal and a vision that they have in their mind of how their future should look. Until their world begins to unfold and appear like that vision, they do not stop. Even when they have reached their destination, by this time, they have set additional goals on how to nurture their gift and remain in their purpose even at heightened levels of success.

The thing about life and success is that it always looks different for every person. Some individuals who are great at finances enjoy making a living teaching financial literacy courses to members in churches, nonprofit organizations, or even in small groups in the business world. Take for example, Dave Ramsey. After becoming wealthy himself and eventually losing it all in a matter of two and a half years, he wrote the book, Financial Peace to counsel folks hurting from the results of financial stress. Eventually his mission and vision grew and he can be seen speaking all over the world educating others on becoming free financially utilizing biblical principles, common-sense education and empowerment.

In pursuit of living out your purpose, goals will more than likely be involved as it will help you navigate to various levels in your life. Your vision will be the guide that tells you if the road you are on will take you to where you would like to be. It will also steer you, when it is time to change directions in order to help you continue leveling up.

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Ultimately, you will begin to see that you are living out your purpose regardless of the current level that you are on. Your vision and your purpose in life will keep you consistent and on the right track to get you to your ultimate goal in life.

The great Ralph Waldo Emerson reminded the world that, “Life is a journey, not a destination.” You may find these truths to be self-evident on your journey to living out your purpose. The time and effort that you put in to perfect your gift will all be worth it, as well as the life lessons it brings along the way.

Finding your purpose and living it out can be tough, but when you choose to stay on the road, it will eventually lead you to your placed called, “there.”

Featured photo credit: minghui.tv via minghui.tv

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Last Updated on April 17, 2019

10 Essential Soft Skills That Will Help Advance Your Career

10 Essential Soft Skills That Will Help Advance Your Career

What’s the secret of professional success? Some of it lies in the mastery of your discipline and all the technical skills you have to carry out your job; but a much bigger part lies in the soft skills list you possess.

Soft skills are your people or relationship skills—how well you get along with others and your ability to communicate and collaborate—as well as the personal characteristics you bring to the job, such as optimism, a can-do attitude and the motivation to work hard. These skills are not always easy to point out, but their absence can cause serious problems and negatively affect the whole work atmosphere.

They say that hard skills will help you get the job, but soft skills will help you get along—and get ahead. With that in mind, here’s the top-10 essential soft skills list to help you advance your career.

1. Communication Skills

Communication skills are hands-down the most sought-after soft skill that bosses want, and this one ability covers a lot of ground.

To communicate well, you have to listen carefully, interpret the context of the conversation, express yourself clearly, persuade others of your point of view, check your body language and use an engaging presentation style that won’t intimidate or bore your audience. That’s a big ask!

Your personality traits can influence the way you communicate with others. For instance, some people get straight to the point and center their arguments around facts and logic; others are cooperative and sensitive to how others feel. Both these approaches are equally valuable but there can be misunderstandings if you don’t understand where the other person is coming from.

Taking a comprehensive personality test can help you understand why you communicate the way you do and where your blind spots are. It can also help you understand other communication styles is so you can tailor your communication to the person you’re dealing with.

After all, connecting with your conversation partner is the hallmark of good communication.

2. Flexibility

Change is an essential part of any business. Companies need employees who are flexible enough to work with new initiatives, open to new ideas, and generally are able to tough it out when things don’t go as planned.

Research has found a link between job performance and flexibility over the long term because there will be times when you have to step outside your routine and rise to fresh challenges that didn’t exist before.

Being flexible doesn’t mean you have to hop into a new task or job role like an expert. Rather, it’s about showing you’re willing to accept new responsibility and learn different things.

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Bosses look for people who are prepared to step outside their comfort zones and are open to alternative solutions when their first idea doesn’t work.

3. Being a Team Player

Working on a team can be challenging but learning to do it well can definitely help you get ahead in your career. Employers look for people who can negotiate, cooperate and manage conflicts with other people to achieve a common goal. That includes the ability to build lasting relationships with customers and clients.

What makes a good team player? Essentially, it’s someone who knows the goal and knows her role. Employers look for evidence that you know your strengths, your responsibilities and how you can best contribute to the team, then put those skills into action by sharing ideas and communicating in a respectful manner. That’s the definition of being a good team player.

This is another area where taking a personality test can help you get ahead. When teams work together, each member brings a unique set of skills and qualities to the group. Research has shown that different combinations of personalities affect how teams collaborate and how productive they are.

Knowing who you are, and how you work on a team, can drive new insights and open the door to better teamwork.

4. Positive Mental Attitude

There are plenty of things you can’t change at work, like the people you work with or the fact that the printer is broken again. The one thing you can change is how much you let these things bother you.

Bosses like people who are calm, rational and upbeat—those who diffuse tensions in the workplace, not get all grouchy and go around slamming doors.

Studies show that people who maintain a sunny disposition have better relationships at work, are happier in their jobs and make better decisions than those who whine and complain. Some suggest that a positive mental attitude can also make you live longer—which means it’s beneficial for every area of your life![1]

It’s not always easy to keep a “glass half full” mentality when work is stressful and the deadlines are piling up. But there are some things you can do to help maintain a positive attitude. Laughing at your unfortunate circumstances keeps the work environment positive, and taking “sanity” breaks can help you keep your cool in high-pressure situations.

Managers look for positive mental attitude in a team member that is ready for a promotion, so it really does pay to keep your cool in challenging situations.

5. A Strong Work Ethic

People with a strong work ethic are committed to the role, persevere when things get tough and are inspired by challenge. These people are ambassadors for the organization, and will always be seen as top talent and ideal candidates.

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If you can exhibit this skill, then expect to be seen as a great candidate, eligible for new opportunities and positions throughout your career.

Since a strong work ethic can mean different things to different people, it helps to show specific examples of your exceptional work ethic during a performance appraisal or interview. For instance, you might talk about:

  • A time when you persisted in the face of challenges and did not shy away from hard work.
  • How you volunteered to help with projects even though these tasks did not form part of your job description.
  • The networking, workplace learning and skills betterment you’ve undertaken, which shows ambition and drive (people with a strong work ethic have those qualities in spades).
  • How you own your mistakes and never, ever point the finger of blame at others.

For help with building a strong work ethic, check out these tips: How to Build a Reliable Work Ethic

6. Public Speaking

Who’s terrified of public speaking? Pretty much everyone, since public speaking is America’s number one fear, ahead of death at number five and loneliness at number seven.

Yet, according to Warren Buffett, mastering this one skill you could increase your personal value by 50 percent.[2] That’s huge!

If you’re not natural at public speaking, you’re in good company. Buffett had to work hard to overcome his stage fright and once dropped out of a public-speaking course before it started—because he was afraid of public speaking! He eventually realized that he needed to build up his confidence by just doing it; over and over in front of small groups.

For a more structured approach, Toastmasters International teaches public speaking and leadership skills through a variety of pathways. Membership of this non-profit looks good on your resume but the real payoff will come when you can put your newfound skills to use on the job or in the interview room.

Or, you can check out this advice: The Ultimate Public Speaking Tips to Hook and Impress Any Audience

7. Integrity

From a manager’s point of view, the two integrity skills that will set you apart are:

  • Always doing what you say you will do
  • Owning an error instead of minimizing or hiding it

…even when no one is around to check up on you.

There are lots of people who have climbed the ladder without scruples, but they are not the people who others trust, respect and support when promotion time comes around.

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Behaving with integrity is a safe and consistent way to enhance your reputation and achieve your professional goals.

8. Managing Your Time

Phone calls, texts, Slack pings, meetings, huddles, side projects, multitasking—we are busier today than any generation before us. There’s no denying the workplace is an incredibly distracting place to be.

A lot of us have traded effectiveness for busyness which we wear as a badge of honor, both as a proxy for productivity and to show our value to the company. But what bosses want, what they really, really want, is someone who actually gets stuff done on time.

Time management is not merely the art of being on time, but of managing your time so you focus on the projects that really matter and add value to the business. This means prioritizing well, sticking to schedules, delegating, and not getting distracted by tasks that are easier to perform or less important. It means planning ahead and learning when it’s appropriate to say no.

Time management can be a tough skill to maintain, but not a difficult one to pick up. Monitor your actions for a few days—how long do your tasks take to finish? What’s interrupting you? What causes you to lose focus? Once you have the answers to these questions, you can set a schedule for yourself to make sure you’re spending your time wisely and this valuable asset is never wasted.

These 20 Quick Time Management Tips to Super Boost Your Productivity are also great to try.

9. Assertiveness

In any workplace, you typically will find people with the following conflict styles:

  • Passive: Those who go out of their way to avoid conflict.
  • Passive-aggressive: Those who express their negative feelings through actions rather than words.
  • Aggressive: Those who respond to conflict in a hostile and rude manner. These people get their opinion heard but they won’t make any friends in the process.
  • Assertive: People who stick up for their rights while still respecting the rights of others.

Managers look for assertiveness above all other styles because it allows decisions to be made without conflict or alienating people.

How do you use this information for yourself?

It starts with understanding your personality so you can anticipate how you will react when conflict arises and address your own shortcomings. Then, you can start influencing the team for top results, and securing your own career advancement in the process.

Learn how to be assertive and gain respect:

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How to Be Assertive and Stand up for Yourself the Smart Way

10. Creative Thinking

LinkedIn recently analyzed over 50,000 skills that employers search for when looking for candidates to find out what skills are currently in demand.[3] Taking the number-one slot on the 2019 soft skills list was creativity: the ability to solve problems and think outside the box.

Creativity is about bringing fresh, and sometimes unorthodox, ideas to the table. This helps companies to innovate, and companies that do not innovate will not survive very long.

How do you showcase your creative thinking skills? The golden rule is to participate.

Be brave and share your ideas during group brainstorming sessions. Volunteer to run a society, networking event or recruitment drive. Ask “what if” questions: “What if we add this information to the client welcome pack?” “What if we eliminate step 3 from the process?”

These activities demonstrate that you’re prepared to go beyond “business as usual” towards creative problem solving—an ability that will serve you every day, all throughout your career.

You can learn to unleash your creativity power:

What Is Creativity? We All Have It, and Need It

Final Thoughts

The good news? Every item on this soft skills list can be learned. Although you may feel lacking in certain areas, taking an inventory of your strengths and weaknesses will allow you to focus in on the areas that you’ll benefit from developing.

So take an inventory of your personality, skills, and talents. This will give you a baseline for your communication style, attitude to change, conscientiousness and more. You can then identify your weak areas and develop strategies for improving your team-building, assertiveness and conflict skills.

The better news? The effort is worth it. Developing your soft skills opens the door to a new job or a promotion, and helps you succeed once you get there.

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Featured photo credit: Rachael Gorjestani via unsplash.com

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