How to Find Your Purpose: The Questions You Need to Ask

How to find your purpose: Questions you need to ask yourself

I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching this week; digging quite deep to discover what my purpose really is.  When I started this exercise I thought I knew what it was, but the more I’ve taken guidance & really started to reflect, the more I’ve realised how unclear I’ve actually been.  

Which I’ve now come to understand is a big reason why I ended 2019 a bit disappointed.   Yes, I had a good year & there was much to feel grateful for, but I wasn’t where I had seen myself being.  I can now appreciate where I went wrong.  

My biggest error was not being clear on what I wanted…  

It’s like approaching a McDonald’s drive-thru & not giving your order. The likelihood of them giving you exactly what you want when you reach the next window is next to no chance.  Alright, you’ve got something but it wasn’t really what you wanted to drive away with.  (Mines a quarter-pounder with cheese, fries & a diet-coke, in case you’re interested.)

This year (as I spoke about in January Well-being Focus: Purpose) I’m getting clear on where I want to be by the time the Champagne bottle pops on New Years Eve 2020.  I appreciate that might be a tall ask – I am a bit of a big-dreamer – but I at least want to end this year full of the benefits of starting it with a clear purpose.  

So as I said, I’ve been doing a lot of research into this and there’s one piece of learning I want to share with you before I share the all-important questions to help you find your purpose.

One key bit of advice for when you’ve found your purpose…

Your inner GPS will guide you along the right path once you've found your purpose

Finding your purpose is fantastic for a whole bunch of reasons.  It’s going to give you focus, motivation, increased self-worth – ultimately it’s going to connect you with a life you’ll feel much joy living.  

However, just because you’ve worked out what your purpose is it doesn’t mean you’ll immediately understand all the steps to take to achieve it.  

But there is good news, as Jack Canfield, America’s #1 success coach & co-creator of ‘Chicken Soup For The Soul’ explains, we all have an inner guidance system.  This ‘personal GPS’ if you will, will help guide us from where we currently are to where we want to be.  

“Once you clarify and then stay focused on your vision, the exact steps will keep appearing along the way in the form of internal guidance, creating ideas, and new opportunities.”  

Sounds good right?  I think so!  But in order for this to work, you first need to be clear about what you want! 

Life’s big questions…

I’ve pulled together a list of questions* I’ve been answering to work out my own purpose and put it into this downloadable worksheet for you.  Clear some time (& find some peace) in order to work through it.  

Find Your Purpose Worksheet

Purpose-Worksheet-2

Good to know:  There’s no pressure to discover all the answers in one sitting.  I recommend reading the questions through, going off for a walk or a bath or something. Have a little ponder before coming back to answer them fully.  For question 2 you might find it helpful to ask trusted friends their opinion. Their insight might be eye-opening to you.   I was surprised by what my friends said about me! 

Going forward with purpose…

I hope this exercise is helpful to you & it leads you to find your purpose. If you’ve managed to outline your dreams & really visualised a life which sees you living them, you’ll no doubt experience that spark of joy & excitement within your belly.  For me, it’s been the highlight of this whole process.  Please don’t feel a dream is too big or too late, the only limits lie in your mindset.  If you don’t try you’ll never know, so go for it! 

Good luck everyone! 


* Source Credits: Jack Canfield.com; My Inner Creative.com; Kristina Karlsson (2018) – Your Dream Life Starts Here: Essential & Simple Steps to Creating the Life of Your Dreams.

Recommended Further Reading:

How to find your purpose: The Questions you need to ask. Includes FREE printable worksheet. #purpose #lifegoals #wellbeing #lifehacks #livehappy
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Do let me know how you get on with the worksheet or if you have any questions you think I might be able to help with. If I can’t answer them I can always point you in the right direction! Have you ever tried anything similar? Any hints or advice you can offer? Whatever you’d like to say, I’d love to hear it, simply enter your comment in the box below

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17 thoughts on “How to Find Your Purpose: The Questions You Need to Ask

  1. A brilliant post Alex. I love the free printable – I’ve just printed it! And I didn’t know you were a fan of chicken soup the the soul books – after my dad introduced me to them years ago I’ve got a nice little collection going. I think your purpose has definitely got to be helping people and giving them direction & advice. 💪🏼

    1. Thank you Lauretta! I hope you enjoy completing it. Yes, I became aware of Jack Canfield from reading The Secret so followed up with his Chicken Soup book. I’ve just bought his Success Principles book which I’ll be delving into next week – have you read it? I really appreciate you taking the time to give me your thoughts on my purpose, it means a lot – people used to say that about my mum & now it seems I’ve adopted that too – not a task to be undertaken lightly, but I do feel connected to it xx

  2. I am happy where I am work-wise. I like cleaning and finally I am working for two different employers who both treat their employees as you would expect to be treated.

    But away from that, I don’t feel I have achieved my full purpose in my private life and I am making changes this year after how awful last year was, which will air soon in a few days,when I reveal my whiteboard I bought and what I have put on it to motivate me when going through difficult patches. I have long and short term goals.
    Short term goals will be something for me to look forward to, while working on the long term one.
    I would like to aim my long term one in 2 years, but realistically it may not start to happen until 3 years and that’s buying my own home. I want the feeling of my own home, which then that happens, once settled in when finding a place, I then want to adopt another cat from Cats Protection, like I have always wanted to do since my last cat’s passing who also came from there. I want to give a home to the cats that get overlooked. Just one, or two at the most.
    If buying doesn’t happen and I don’t get the unexpected chance of a council property, then I will move to another private rented property that is ideal for cats and a landlord that will allow pets.
    My life is at my happiest with pets.
    Regardless of how last year was, I found as I blogged about recently my achievements of last year. The list length surprised me to say what last year was like of achievements I had. So my positiveness and gratitude is going well over the years.

    1. I love how much clarity you have Liz. I think your white board/vision board will really help to keep you focused & motivated. I’m sure if you stay positive & connected to what truly makes you happy, listening to what your instincts are telling you with which actions to take, then you will get what you want. There will always be speed bumps & tough times – such is life, but everything you’ve said you want is achievable – I hope you realise more of it this year than you ever thought possible x

      1. I know I really want this and I think after last year I had it has made my wants more stronger than before, although a little seed of doubt tries to get in my head, is this too late? This would be an out of my comfort zone too, diung something like this. But again the want is stronger than out if my comfort zone.
        I want to put a certain minimum amount of deposit down, which is more than minimum and I want to pay my mortgage off in 10 years preferably but no longer than 12.

      2. The fact that it’s out of your comfort zone means you’re reaching for your dreams. As the famous quote says, all progress take places outside your comfort zone. Plus it’s never too late Liz, make your sense of self-worth stronger than your sense of self-doubt. Many people before have achieved what others would have said was impossible and you’re not asking for the impossible x

        PS a daily affirmation I find helpful is ‘Today I choose courage over comfort’ maybe this one might help you too?

        Go for it Liz x

  3. Thank you for this Alex. In my experience, it sometimes takes time to find out our purpose, as this is multi-layered with different aspects that nonetheless interlink, for example, having an emotional purpose is crucially linked to our physicality and spiritual purpose. I have recently found I have a creative purpose which is relatively unexplored, as it is in drawing/painting. A gift I was given with watercolour markers is helping me with calmness, positivity and creativity, as I draw and paint I feel a deeper spiritual connection with God and those around me, something I hadn’t really anticipated – a precious multifaceted gift indeed!

  4. Good Morning! I submitted a story once to Chicken Soup For The Soul! I was taking a writing class and she suggested it to me – I never heard back, but I will try again. Finding one’s purpose is really difficult. This has me thinking that maybe some days our purpose is only for the one day? I know that for 30 years, my purpose was my kids. Then when in search again, I started writing this blog because I felt my purpose was sharing my story. I am a huge believer in following your inner voice or I like to call messages from God when somebody says something to me and the lightbulb goes off – listening lead me to both of those things. I am currently stuck wondering how far I am supposed to take it? There is a nagging feeling that I am supposed to do more, but then when I get messages from people with thanks for helping them and sharing, I think maybe that’s enough? I am hoping to figure that out this year. Meanwhile, I printed your sheet and will let you know how it goes! xoxo

    1. You should definitely try again! I hear you about how difficult it can be, as I said I thought I had it clear but was far from it & it’s taken a lot of soul searching & reflection. I agree with you that our purpose can change throughout our lives & it’s important to be receptive to when we may need to reflect again. As to how far to take it, I personally believe you should just go with your gut, you won’t always get it right but at least you’ll learn. What do you think? Thanks for sharing Sandy & I’m rooting for you – please do let me know how you get on xx

  5. I loved this post, Alex. Your McDonalds analogy is great and one that I’ve never heard before. I downloaded your worksheet and I’m really excited to fill it out. This was a great post to read at the start of the year, but also at the start of a new life-stage for me as I finish my grad program and begin to apply to new jobs and hopefully work in the career field of my dream.

    1. Thank you! I hope you find the worksheet helpful. Let me just wish you all the best & much success with where you’re headed now – it’s fantastic to make such a positive move forward into your next exciting chapter! xx

  6. I loved this post! I will have to download this worksheet! I tend to enjoy and try out different things, so it’s been difficult for me to narrow down what my purpose is. I’ve been trying to reflect more often (which the worksheet will be helpful with) so I can develop a clearer understanding on what makes me happy and motivated. Then I can hopefully work towards that in the future!

    1. Thank you, and yes, please do download the worksheet, focusing your thoughts in this manner will help. I think you’re approaching discovering your purpose in a really positive way & I’m sure you’ll unlock it. Just remove the ‘hopefully’ from your work towards it – you were meant to fulfill your purpose, trust in yourself, have absolute faith you will get there xx

  7. I love this Alex, especially the printable. I THINK I know what my life purpose is but it is still possibly somewhat vague….I’m planning a full Saturday soon to get really clear on my purpose and goals. Your worksheet will come in handy, thank you 🙂

    1. Thank you Alison, that’s very kind of you to say. I can relate – it’s definitely worth investing the time to gain the clarity – everything kind of works itself out from that point. Good luck with your planning session xx

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