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Last Updated on November 27, 2020

7 Reasons Why a Life Without Purpose is Unfulfilling

7 Reasons Why a Life Without Purpose is Unfulfilling

Every motivational speaker preaches the importance of having a purpose in life. They all tell you that a life without purpose is not the right way to go.

None of them are wrong. In fact, what they say is 100% true. But it’s not the easiest when you’re struggling to find the motivation that you need to find a purpose. It takes a lot to take a step out of your life without purpose to change the way you live and think.

What bigger motivation can there be than to tell you all the reasons why a life without purpose is hurting you?

Here are 7 fundamental reasons that will give you just enough motivation to get on with the search of your life’s purpose because living without one is affecting you beyond your imagination!

1. A Life Without Purpose Has No Meaning

Have you ever dreaded living a lifeless life? If not, you probably don’t know how excruciating such an existence is.

Imagine not wanting to wake up every morning but also not wanting to go to sleep at night. No will to work, no excitement to spend, no friends’ company to enjoy, and no reason to continue living. A blank mind with nothing to think about. The lack of emotions—negative and positive. Nothing to look forward to.

Yes, it’s clearly a depressing life. That’s exactly what you end up feeling without a purpose in life.

A lack of purpose means a lack of goals. This means nothing is leading you to an imaginary final destination. You literally have nowhere to go, you find it absolutely torturous to be on the way, and you don’t even like the route.

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Why even would you want to go on such a journey?

Even if you have goals, they are very haphazard. One goal contradicts the other. You’re all over the place with no sense of direction at all. A life without purpose is as meaningless as this.

However, once you have a clear idea of why you’re living, you get an idea of the bigger outcome that you can look forward to. Every step of the way is meaningful. Your journey is not just a wander around without an aim. Instead, even the strolls become enjoyable because you know they’re leading you to where you’re supposed to be.

2. You’re Full of Anxiety

Do you find yourself stuck in a cycle of an anxious life? Well, there’s a high chance it’s because of your lack of purpose.

A life without purpose is senseless. Nothing you do in life is connected. Since nothing seems to be coherent, your mind is unable to comprehend why everything is happening.

Anxiety is triggered when a person’s mind thinks their life is in danger. So, in the case of a purposeless life, your brain translates the lack of connection to be a threat to your life. Anything that doesn’t seem to be a fit is automatically a danger as per your brain.

On the contrary, if your mind can link your doings with a coherent purpose, everything tends to make more sense. Hence, you feel more at peace and less anxious. Your mind is at ease because the path to the final purpose isn’t pointless anymore.

3. Motivation Is a Long-Lost Dream

One thing that pretty much every human who wants to be successful needs is a lot of motivation.

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For a clearer picture, look at it from the perspective that you do have a defined purpose in life. You trust in every way that life leads you to. What does that do? It boosts your brain to work harder. Every step of the way makes you feel closer to your final destination. This automatically encourages you to perform better.

Without a purpose, you can never scale your achievements. Since you don’t know what it’s leading you to, you consider it to be meaningless. But when you’re well-aware of the expected results, the smallest progress is a motivation booster too.

You can try out all the motivation boosting tips but the one that will work the best is to find your life’s purpose and live by it.

4. Lack of Focus Keeps You From Growing

Every field, career, part of life, and relationship requires growth. Human life is ultimately the name of progress—if nothing else, at least your mental capacity and knowledge grow.

Where does this growth come from? You could have access to the best knowledge sources. Yet, you won’t learn a word unless your mind is in a state to absorb that information. Similarly, if you’re focused, you can learn something valuable even from the most non-happening events.

Basically, the way this works is that a life purpose keeps you working in one direction. You may take a few turns here and there, but the ultimate output is known. So, all the hard work you’re putting in is intended for your life’s purpose in the bigger picture.

This focus is unachievable any other way. With a purpose, you’ll choose a career path, people around you, relationships, friends, living space, and even your daily commute accordingly. So everywhere you go, your focus remains undisturbed. The end goal in mind is consistent.

With a clear focus on the right things, you can easily get past the minor inconveniences. The important things are always in your focus no matter how small they are. So, overall, it gets way easier for a person with a defined life purpose to work well, harder, and more effectively.

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5. Success Seems Unachievable in a Life Without Purpose

Everything that you’ve read so far directly contributes to your success or failure. So, mental peace, motivation, and focus are all important to be successful in any part of your life. But there’s more to the picture.

You may have a vision in mind even if you don’t have a life purpose. You might even push yourself to the maximum to stay focused in the direction that you think is right for you.

Look at it this way:

You head out for New York but you got on the wrong road. You’re welcomed with a narrow road that is too dark to even see around—but you keep going. Your car breaks down and there’s no workshop nearby. Yet, you push the car as far as possible. You can go for as long you want but you’ll never reach New York.

So, without even knowing what your life’s purpose is—no matter how hard you work—it will be useless. If you know the right path for you, you might not even have to work half as hard to get to your desired results.

6. Affects Physical Health

A life without purpose affects more than just your mental health. It can impact your physical wellbeing too.[1]

First of all, the strain on your mind automatically translates to your physical body. Continuous stress is likely to cause hair loss, acne, weight loss, weight gain, etc. But there can be more serious consequences as well.

Studies have proven that people with a clear sense of purpose in life live longer than those who continue with a life without purpose. People with their life purpose well-defined were able to tolerate more pain and also had a lesser risk of heart diseases.

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What’s more astonishing is that people without a purpose in life are 2.4 times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease, too.

The reason may possibly be that people who don’t have a life purpose lose hope and don’t have anything to look forward to. So, the psychological effect gets to their physical wellbeing. Whatever the case, if a defined life purpose can save you from all this hassle, why wouldn’t want to have one?

7. Nothing in Life Is Enjoyable

Social inclusion is a huge part of one’s purpose in life.[2] People who are living a purposeless life tend to be more lonely. Even if they join social gatherings, they are lesser likely to enjoy it.

Since such people do not have mental clarity, they just cannot enjoy the fun things around them. Their brain is unable to comprehend emotions. This doesn’t necessarily mean that their circumstances aren’t good enough. The same environment and people can be enjoyable for a person who feels content mentally.

Conclusion

Every single one of these reasons is proven to be a result of a purposeless life. Every single reason leads to a chaotic lifestyle. Nobody would purposely want to live a life like that.

We’ve been given a very short time to live in this world. So instead of wasting it living a life without purpose, it’s time you start making an effort to improve it.

Getting out of this hurtful life is right within your hands. Go through the hassle and short-term struggle to live a worthy life till eternity!

More Tips on Living a Life With Purpose

Featured photo credit: Maria Teneva via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] University of Minnesota: Why is Life Purpose Important?
[2] NCBI: Alone and Without Purpose

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Leon Ho

Founder & CEO of Lifehack

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Last Updated on April 14, 2021

How to Find Your Core Values to Live a Fulfilling Life

How to Find Your Core Values to Live a Fulfilling Life

Everyone has things that are important to them. It can be getting in that morning coffee, going for a run after work, spending time with friends and family, or volunteering. The things that are important to you can give you a clue as to what your core values are in life.

This is important, as, according to The Atlantic, 7 out of 10 Americans say people’s values have been getting worse in America over the past decade.[1]

Let’s first define core values and then dive into discovering what yours are.

What Are Core Values?

Your core values are a testament to your true self because they are what matters most to you when it comes to your personal and professional life. Your values influence that little voice in your head that tells you whether or not to care about something and how you should prioritize your time.

Your values are the things that you believe are important in the way you live and work.[2] They help determine what you truly want out of life while simultaneously acting as the measuring stick you use to tell if you’re satisfied with your current situation and living in a meaningful way. Core values define who we are while helping us find our purpose.

Here are a few good examples of values:[3]

  • Reliability
  • Loyal
  • Committed
  • Teamwork
  • Caring
  • Adventurous
  • Listening
  • Diversity
  • Humility

Some of these values are instilled in you from childhood. They can be cultural or learned through watching your family and hearing their discussions about things they’re passionate about.

Perhaps now, in adulthood, you realize you’re passionate about those same things. It’s not a bad thing to share core values with those around you, but it can be detrimental to live a life that doesn’t honor those core values once you’ve identified them.

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How Core Values Affect Our Daily Decisions

We make decisions based on our values every day, but we sometimes forget about the important decisions we face, big and small, and the potential stress those choices can create.

When you can identify your values and make choices that align with them, life suddenly becomes a little easier. But when you’re running on autopilot and not allowing your values to coincide with your choices, you can find yourself becoming incredibly unhappy, and maybe you don’t know why.

Discovering your core values don’t help with huge aspects alone; they impact seemingly small things, too. Think back to that new phone you bought that you didn’t really need. You decided that spending money wisely was not valuable to you, but is that truly how you feel?

Now it’s the end of the month and bills are due. Perhaps it would be really helpful to have that money back, so it has created stress. That disconnect stems from living a life that doesn’t correlate with your core values.

When you begin to make those choices that seem small at the time knowing what you find valuable, you begin to feel less stress in other aspects of your life. This has a snowball effect that leads to better choices and prolonged stress-free existence. And the best part is, there’s no hard work needed, just some introspection and self-awareness.

And if simply sitting alone for a few minutes could impact the rest of your life positively, wouldn’t it be worth it? After all, knowing your values helps you make important decisions, like accepting a job, starting a business, or making a big change.

How Do We Find Our Personal Values?

Core values are important to us. By figuring out the things that matter to us most, we can lead a better life.

To get started finding your core values, you can check out Lifehack’s Free Life Assessment, which can help point you to what you believe to be important in life.

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Then, you can try the following two ways to find your personal core values.

Start With Your Morals

Knowing your core values can certainly sync up with your morals, which you likely already have a good handle on. After all, your values have a direct impact on your standards of behavior.

Think about it: if it is morally important to you to arrive at your workplace and focus on nothing but work on company time, it will also be true that being an honest and efficient employee is a value you carry to every job you occupy.

If you’re the kind of partner who puts their phone away when on a date, this probably means you are a morally loyal person and want to ensure your partner knows you value time with them.

This is a strong indication that, as a core value, you put relationships first and work hard to show people you care. You could easily list respect and commitment on your list of core values.

Analyze Your Own Experiences

For instance, think back to a time you were the happiest.

Can you name the thing that caused you to feel happiness? Was the fulfillment you felt due to other people, and if so, who were they?

Think about when you were proud of yourself, and why you felt that pride. Your own experiences can shine a great light on what you hold important.

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Don’t be afraid to look ahead and analyze where you want to challenge the status quo. What values do you want to exemplify to your children?

If you want others to value it, it’s valuable to you.

What Should I Do With My Core Values?

Just sit down and make a list of what comes to mind, and let yourself explore those core value words. There is no set limit on how many values you can have, so allow yourself to list as many as you can.

1. Prioritize Your Values

If you wind up with 20 words, consider crossing out those that barely made the list and prioritize your values.

Personal development blogger Steve Pavlina suggests identifying the top value, then the second-highest value, and so on until you’ve rebuilt the list in order of priority from the top to the bottom.[4]

As you’re trying to prioritize the values, have this question at the back of your mind:

If I have to choose from these, which one goes first, and which one can I live without?

Some of the words may easily float to the top, whereas others might stump you. Allow that to happen, and accept that it aids in teaching you who you are.

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2. Look to Your Values Every Day

Once you’ve determined what your core values are, it’s vital to look to them every day. We all face challenging situations and decisions, and it’s important to know your core values in those instances, as they will help guide you when the best choice isn’t the most obvious one.

Let your core values be valuable to you. Everyone is on their own path, and no one can tell you what your core values are but you.

3. Don’t Be Afraid to Rework Your List in the Future

When you realize your values and begin to live by them, you may find that not all of them are as important as you believed.

Rework your list when the time comes. You’re allowed to consciously change your values as you grow and evolve as a person. In fact, it will be entirely necessary throughout your life.

Final Thoughts

You are not your values. You are the thinker of your thoughts, but you are not the thoughts themselves. Your personal values are your current compass, but they aren’t the real you.

Remember, your important values should aid in creating your best life, and your most authentic self.

You make the rules, so be patient with yourself and dedicate the time to discovering your core values. You’ll be amazed at the things you can accomplish.

More on Discovering Your Personal Values

Featured photo credit: Bewakoof.com Official via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] The Atlantic: 21 Charts That Explain American Values Today
[2] MindTools: What Are Your Values?
[3] ContentSparks: Big List of Core Value Words
[4] Steve Pavlina: Living Your Values Part 1

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