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Published on October 1, 2019

5 Steps to Create Self-Fulfillment in Times of Adversity

5 Steps to Create Self-Fulfillment in Times of Adversity

You will never find self-fulfillment if you are struggling.

That is the lie I felt like we are all told. If we struggle, we cannot be happy and therefore cannot be fulfilled.

But the problem isn’t the adversity itself, it is the way we look at it. We see struggle as bad and, to struggle is to fail. But it’s not.

To struggle is to progress, to learn, to improve, to grow.

Self-fulfillment is an elusive concept at the best of times but when faced with adversity, it seems near impossible to find. Life is hard, messy and doesn’t ever seem to go the way we plan. Life just keeps getting in the way, seemingly throwing new obstacles for us to hurdle over in order to reach fulfillment but it’s like with every hurdle, the finish line just gets further away.

We still search for self-fulfillment, that feeling of pure happiness and knowledge that we are doing the right thing at the right time. That feeling that no matter what, we added value into the world today and we are so proud of us.

In this article, you will discover what true fulfillment is, and how to achieve self-fulfillment even during tough times.

What Is Self-Fulfilment?

Self-fulfillment is the fulfilment of one’s hopes and ambitions.

Sounds simple enough, to feel fulfilled, you have to achieve your hopes and ambitions and at a glance, that doesn’t seem too hard. But isn’t fulfillment just long term happiness?

Fulfillment vs Happiness

Fulfillment and happiness are not the same thing. Happiness is a temporary state, it happens and it goes away until the next thing makes you happy.

Fulfillment is much more long term, more about the bigger picture. To feel fulfilled doesn’t mean to be happy and joyous all day long everyday. Some days are going to be bad, but if you are doing something you believe in, something you want to do be doing with all of your soul, you will be fulfilled.

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It is not a feeling of happiness or sadness, it’s an underlying feeling of complete love. You can love someone and still be annoyed at them, but you know you love them. That is fulfillment.

Why Is Self-Fulfillment Important?

You are reading this because you are struggling, you don’t feel like fulfilled in your life and you are looking for the answer that you’re missing.

When you feel fulfilled in your life, it’s like you are never looking for the emergency escape door, and it is a delicate balance to get it right. When you do find it, you get that warm cosy feeling all the winter movies promise.

5 Steps to Create Self-Fulfillment in Times of Adversity

Here’s how to create self-fulfillment in your life in the face of adversity:

1. Work out What Your Core Values Are

What are your core values and why are they important?

Our core values are the qualities we value most in the world; characteristics we admire or cherish in others.

If you meet someone and they are your type of person and you can’t explain why, you have met someone whose core values are in alignment with yours. For example, if one of your core values is honesty, you will value and like an honest person. Just like if you meet a dishonest person, you will have an unspoken aversion to them.

But how do your core values affect your self-fulfillment?

Who you are defines how you will find fulfillment. If you want to achieve all of your hopes and dreams, it is much easier to find out where to go if you have a road map. Your core values affect every decision, interaction and build up the person you call yourself. You can’t feel fulfilled if you are doing something that goes in direct contradiction to them.

If you are an honest person and you are doing dishonest work, you will not be fulfilled and you will without doubt, be facing adversity within yourself.

How do you find your core values?

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There are several ways to work out what your core values are but a quick way is to look at a list of them and pick the ones you relate to the most.

The first key to fulfillment is to live in alignment with your core values, once you start to find them and make adjustments to your life to cut out anything that goes against them, your will start to find your adversity fading away as you embrace a life that you want.

2. Work out What Your Real Hopes and Ambitions Are

Notice I mean work out your own hopes and ambitions, not the ones you have been told to have.

Now you know what your core values are, you can move forward on working out what is it truly that you want to do. Who do you want to be? What do you want to do? Play a banjo in Bali for a living? Giving up your corporate life to start a charity? Or do you want to give up your charity to take a corporate job?

We all grew up being influenced by so many factors and people. None so more than our parental figures, who in most cases, only wanted the best for us. They told us who we were going to be so we could be successful and we didn’t have to struggle as they struggled. But nowhere, down the line, did anyone actually stop to ask what you wanted and who you wanted to be?

We aren’t born with the knowledge of what makes us feel fulfilled, we have to find it through trial and error but fear stops us from searching. At some point in our lives, we get ashamed for our interests and choices. To avoid pain, we conform to what the populus want us to do and we stop experimenting. Our dreams get confined to the back of our heads and life gets too busy for us to worry about them. We take the jobs we don’t really care about and fill the void with fun activities, food and material goods because there is something in our hearts that is missing.

The dreams we have are the key to fulfillment.

If you want to feel like you are achieving your hopes and dreams, then you have to actually be doing something to do with your hopes and dreams, not the dreams you have been told to have because of fear.

3. Accept Your True Self

Whatever it is you want and whatever your core values are, you are never going to reach fulfillment without self-acceptance.

Who you are is who you are, and there is nothing wrong with who you are.

Sure, you’re not everyone’s cup of tea. But I have some news for you, some people out there, don’t like drinking tea. Most people drink turmeric lattes nowadays!

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The reason we deny accepting ourselves as we are is because at some point or many points in our lives, someone has told us we aren’t good enough, we aren’t worthy and who we are is wrong.

To that person, that may have been true to them. But here is the long hidden secret about people, flaws are subjective. Your flaws that you have been criticized for aren’t flaws at all, they are just incompatibilities with certain people. That flaw you were criticized for (shall we say Honesty), you were once too honest and someone told you it was bad. Someone else might appreciate your candor while you hung onto the negative that no one will like you if you’re honest.

Your flaw is actually a benefit in the eyes of somebody else. Which means, you can’t have flaws at all, you just have qualities that some other people don’t like. Some people will and some people won’t and that is okay.

Accept yourself for who you are, worts and all. You don’t have to change the world to be important or special. But by embracing who you are and accepting yourself, you can change somebody’s world.

4. Understand That Change Is Not Only Important but Inevitable

Fulfillment is fluid.

I have spent the first 2 steps telling you fulfilment is based on who you are and your core values but, can you honestly tell me you haven’t changed?

You grow, learn new skills and unlock new possibilities, you level up. You are always changing, you grow new core values, your dreams and goals grow and evolve as you do.

A common adversity we face is our own obsession with avoiding change. We hate change, change isn’t safe, survival instincts kick in and we don’t know what could happen, we aren’t prepared and we lose control.

The core of anxiety is our lack of ability to control the uncontrollable.

We hate change but one of the most dependable things in the world is that everything changes. We all change, all the time. We suddenly decide we like marmite now, we buy new hats to mix it up a bit. When we control the change, we are fine; but with the stuff we can’t control, we go a little bananas.

But how is this relevant to self-fulfillment?

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Well the thing about fulfillment is, it is the feeling of achieving your hopes, dreams and goals and they are always changing. By trying to hold onto your old self’s goals and thinking hitting them will make you feel fulfilled, is just silly.

You are evolving to become a new person all the time and you can’t feel fulfilled if you are hitting someone else’s dreams, hopes and goals. The old you is holding you back, it’s time to let them go and embrace this new ever changing you.

Which leads us to the next step.

5. Understand That Fulfillment Comes from Living in the Moment, Not Hitting a Goal or a Task.

To be fulfilled, you have to embrace the journey, with all its ups and downs and all its adversity.

We have this idea that once we hit a goal, buy that house, marry that spouse, that is it, we will feel fulfilled forever. But fulfillment is deeply personal, it is a reflection of who you are and who you want to be. It’s an ongoing process; it can’t be achieved through one event.

You don’t buy a house, have kids and get a dog and then just go Bam, Fulfilled Forever! That is not in human nature, humans are driven to constantly seek better and more. We are biologically programmed to do so, which means one event or one goal cannot possibly help us create fulfillment. Fulfillment has to be a daily process of embracing what you are doing and working towards your dream by offering value in a way that only you can.

Final Thoughts

You will always face adversity, but you don’t always have to struggle while you face them. You have the opportunity to change your life at any time, change the adversity you are facing or change the way you look at the problem and situation.

By working out what you value, what you really want, and understanding that it could all change at any moment, you have to accept yourself for who you are and live in the moment. This is the swiftest way to self-fulfillment.

Self-fulfillment needs gratitude, self acceptance and understanding to thrive. Without them, it is hard to really embrace that feeling of unlimited contentment.

The most important thing you need to know is that you can overcome any adversity, no matter how big or small. The biggest illusion about self-fulfillment is that it is eternal and endless, it’s not. It comes and goes with the tides but embracing those key moments and really appreciating them are what give you the energy and strength to overcome any adversity.

More About Finding Fulfillment in Life

Featured photo credit: Candice Picard via unsplash.com

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Jade Nyx

Qualified Life Coach

5 Steps to Create Self-Fulfillment in Times of Adversity

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Last Updated on October 16, 2019

What Is the Purpose of Life and What Should You Live For?

What Is the Purpose of Life and What Should You Live For?

In society today, knowing your purpose of life and what you should live for has become the major criteria for measuring how happy your life is. There is a lot of pressure to know your purpose in life, becuase if you don’t know, then the chances of you living a fulfiling and happy life are nil.

This is absolute rubbish.

Ralph Emerson’s states in his quote that our purpose in life has nothing to do with happiness but more to do with how well we lived our lives.

“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”

That is the secret recipe to living a happy and fulfilling life.

A Story About My Friend John

My best friend John suddenly passed away a few weeks ago. John was a person who lived a purposeful life that was centred on his commitment and love for his family and serving others.

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John did not seek out his purpose in life. He didn’t read personal development books on how to find your life purpose and he never asked the question “what should I live for?” He just knew what gave him joy and that was to serve his family and the people who were in his life.

John was that person that Ralph Emerson was referring to in his quote: a man who showed compassion and kindness and who lived a full life with purpose and commitment.

John was not a famous man who had achieved world recognition for his amazing feats. He was my long-time friend, a truly great man who to me lived his life purpose to the fullest.

Not all of us are like John who just knew what his purpose in life was and then just did it. Some of us need guidance as to how we can start this journey…

3 Steps To Finding Your Life Purpose

Here are 3 very simple steps that if you follow will help you to attain purpose and fulfilment in life.

1. Disconnect from Social Media

With social media, we are relentlessly exposed to thousands of people who present a life where they seem to be living incredibly fulfilled and successful lives with purpose.

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It seems to be for many people that figuring out your life purpose today is complicated and a drawn out process that can take forever. This is in fact not true at all.

On social media, you only see the fabulous and fun parts of peoples lives, you do not see their true life that can be as challenging and as complicated as yours. No one escapes the realities of life – those life curveballs that come from nowhere.

If you are comparing your quality of life and your happiness with those people on social media, then you need to stop. You need to find your own measures of success as to what a fulfilled happy life means to you.

Social Media will not give you what you are seeking when it comes to finding what it is that will bring joy to your life.

When you are consistently experiencing joy in your life, you are living a purposeful life. You know what the kind of life you want to live that is important to you. Using other peoples experiences of joy on social media is not best way for you to determine your life purpose.

2. Ask These 3 Key Questions to Define Your Life Purpose

To start your journey to figuring out your purpose in life ask yourself these 3 key questions:

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  • What is the legacy that I want to leave behind?
  • What will people say about me when I have gone?
  • What difference have I made to other peoples lives?

The answers to these 3 questions will help you determine your purpose in life.

Once you have defined these answers, the next step is for you is to take action and consistently demonstrate those qualities you believe are important for you to attain living a life with purpose and joy.

3. Focus on the Specific Actions That Bring You Joy

“You do not write your life with words. . . You write it with actions. What you think is not important. It is only important what you do” — Patrick Ness

Discovering your purpose in life and what you should live for is the same for everyone in the world – rich or poor. Everyone has the opportunity to live life to the fullest. It is not complex, difficult or out of your reach.

Finding your life purpose is very achievable. All you have to do is decide what it is that living a fulfilled happy life means to you and then you go do it. Go and be kind to others and live your life the best way you can every day.

Acts of kindness, generosity, gratitude and love are the core actions of living a life with purpose. If you focus on these actions on a daily basis, you will be living your life with purpose. It is at this point that the feelings of happiness fill your life.

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The more you do for others, the more happy you will be.

A Word of Warning

When you are living your life with purpose, it does not mean that you will transform into living the life of an angel.

Remember your reality – you will still have your faults, make huge mistakes, fail and have to navigate your way through the challenges that life throws at you.

However, living a life with purpose and commitment builds your resilience and enables you to deal with life challenges from a place of strength and certainty.

Your power of choice is the only thing that you have that enables you to live a life with purpose and joy. My friend John knew how to use his power of choice to the fullest. He chose to live a life with purpose and he knew what he had to do to bring joy into his life and to those people he loved – a very simple recipe to living life to the fullest.

The journey to knowing your life purpose and living your life purpose is within your reach. You are the only person who can do it and you have control over how you want to live your life.

Remember that nobody else does – it is all down to you. I suggest that you go do it now!

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Featured photo credit: Timothy Paul Smith via unsplash.com

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