In times of massive change, when even our most carefully-laid plans seem to fly out the window, we can easily feel like we’re on shaky ground, about to lose our footing.
Fortunately, even in those times, certain constants remain hearty and true in our lives. One such thing: Your purpose.
If you are feeling a bit wonky these days, perhaps one or a combination of these ideas will help you return to your ‘true north’ whenever you feel the need:
1. Pause before speaking / acting.
One of the greatest life distinctions we can learn is the one between ‘react’ and ‘respond.’ This can be especially helpful in times of tension or high emotion. Practice pausing – even just for a few moments – and choosing, with intention, your response.
2. Plan and prioritize your day.
Changing times can make planning a challenge, but the fact of the matter is, we always were and always will be adapting to changes. Mapping out key components of your day, such as identifying your Daily Top 3, can bring focus and deliberate action into your schedule.
3. Look for meaning.
Whenever we embark on something new, we often experience a burst of growth and energy at the start, followed by a dip, before reaching the goal or moving to the next level. That dip might include uncertainty, feeling stuck, discomfort … I often refer to this as the ‘messy middle’ with coaching clients. Seek meaning in the mess by asking yourself, “What am I learning? What are the lessons here?”
4. Help someone else.
“There are countless people out there who need the gifts that you and you alone are here to give,” writes Marie Forleo in her empowering book, Everything Is Figureoutable, and I wholeheartedly agree. Teach a skill, offer a kind word, donate time or treasure, share a social media post, ask “How can I help you?” You can make a difference in more ways than you know!
5. Review your Purpose Statement.
I do this on a daily basis and it never fails to bring me back to center. You may not always feel like you know what to do, but your Purpose Statement reminds you of who and how you wish to be in the world regardless. Let this serve as your guide when making decisions, choosing actions, or even simply returning to a place of calm knowing. (If you don’t have a written Purpose Statement, join my email community for upcoming opportunities!)
6. Connect with your core values.
One of my core values is growth, so I make sure I am growing and/or helping others grow on a daily basis. This growth could take place in any number of ways: reading, teaching, practicing a skill, trying something new… Define your core values, then look for and design ways to honor them.
7. Continue, or begin, your own morning practice.
How you start the day can set the tone for your day, so choose to start it on purpose! This can be as simple as a 2-minute gratitude practice before emerging from bed to a more detailed mindset/heartset practice. There’s no one right way – the best morning practice is the one you will actually do!
8. Engage in other daily practices, too.
We’ve been discussing this in the ASPIRE Success Club and helpful daily practices might include anything from meditation to going for a run to creating a meal plan to making your bed. Determine which actions help you feel strong and purposeful, then make a point to engage in one or more of them daily.
9. Move your body.
Stretching, lifting weights (or weighted items, like a bag of flour, at home), jumping rope … however feels good to move, move! I have gotten into the practice lately of what I call ‘mantra walks’: I choose a brief phrase and repeat it over and over with each footstep. Your body/mind/spirit connection is an important component of purposefulness.
10. Imagine yourself as ‘advisor’.
When you find yourself in doubt or questioning what to do, ask yourself, “What would I advise my child / partner / best friend to do in this situation?” This brings a level of objectivity while keeping you connected to your own inner wisdom, values, and purpose.
With all of these ideas plus those you generate for yourself, you might weave one word throughout: grace. Do your best. Seek your answers within. And shower yourself and others with extensive amounts of grace.
What helps you feel purposeful? Add your ideas below!
Christi Hegstad, PhD, PCC is the Certified Executive + Personal Coach for difference-making achievers! Clarify your vision, free up time, and confidently reach bold goals with meaning and purpose! Contact us today for coaching, speaking, and Mastermind opportunities, or click here and fill in the blue box to join our email community.