Do you get out of bed in the morning so full of energy, excited for your day and your future? (this is not your first journal prompt 😊).
Do you live a life that’s full of meaning, purpose, and fulfillment?
Or, is it the opposite? Do you find it difficult to get up in the morning because you’re unmotivated? Your life lacks meaning? Something feels like it’s missing?
This is more common than you think. If you’re reading this article, chances are you’re feeling something is missing in your life, too.
A few decades ago, a man would typically get a job, earn a living, find a partner, start a family, and maybe have a few hobbies. His job would last until retirement age. Women typically stayed at home. That was their “job.” Their purpose was caring for the kids and for others generally.
Times have changed. You no longer have job security. Many people don’t choose to stay at their jobs for a long time. There are some who try to make it as a solo- or entrepreneur.
People want more now. They want more out of life than just grinding away at a job they don’t like, working with people they mostly don’t care for, spending their days in a hectic and stressful pace; so out of balance and touch with what’s real and true for them.
People want to experience what it’s like to have a sense of purpose. They want to have more meaning and fulfillment in their life so that when the end of their life comes, they’ll feel satisfied they’ve lived their best life.
Many people want to find their sole purpose in life – the thing they’re meant to do, to create, to achieve in their life. They look at others who have done so, and wonder if and when it will ever happen.
They think to themselves that they have this life – how can they use it and make the most of it so that at the end there are no regrets?
This rising of awareness of “how can I find my purpose?” is wonderful. More people, doing wonderful things, not taking their lives for granted, but instead living purposefully. Think of what a difference that makes in the world!
But it raises the question, which ignites a fire (or angst, or underlying dissatisfaction) in one’s soul:
How do we find more purpose in our life?
How do we find more meaning and fulfillment? What are those activities that make our lives more meaningful, happier, and so that we’re filled with a sense of peace and direction?
You’re about to find out.
First you’ll need a journal and some time for self-reflection.
A journal is a wonderful tool for discovering your purpose(s). Discovering your purpose doesn’t come from other people telling you what it is. It’s something you discover. This requires you to go within, to connect with your interests, your passions, and desires. You learn to pay attention to your intuition and then allow it to express itself through your thoughts, ideas, synchronicities, and the like. These are all clues, puzzle pieces if you will, to creating meaningful goals, dreams, your mission and vision.
This may require some patience. The process will require time to explore and to refine your results, but it’s so worth the time and focus you put into it.
Have you noticed the amount of options for careers, passions, and interests? It can be overwhelming! It will take time to identify and tease out what you gravitate toward and that really matters for you – not for someone else or what they think is best for you.
Life is too short to spend it taking it for granted, to end up at the end of your life full of regrets. Take the time to do these journal prompts. You’re so worth it!
Before you get started, there are a few things you should know beforehand:
- Buy a journal or open up a word doc on your computer. I personally think the energetic action of writing is more powerful than typing on a computer, but it really is your choice.
- Write down the following 8 questions you’ll find below. Instead of writing out the answers, I want you to instead read them to yourself in the morning. Take a moment to pause between each to consider what the answers might be – but don’t write anything down. You’ll be priming your brain in the morning to unconsciously go over them throughout the day.
- Go about your day. If you get any insights, write them down. If your journal isn’t nearby, write them down on a piece of paper or record a voice memo so you can write them in your journal later. Your mind will keep running, like a software program searching quietly in the background. You’ll want to capture those insights as they pop up.
- Evening reflection. At the end of your day, spend some time reading the questions again in the journal and then write down any ideas or insights you’ve had. Try not to censor your insights – just write down what comes to you. Let your ideas flow. If you find this interferes with your sleep, you may want to adjust the time you do this. For some, journalling before bed primes their mind to go over the questions during their sleep. For others, they may be too excited about all the ideas coming up for them so that their mind has difficulty shutting down and relaxing.
- Rinse and repeat this process for 7 days. At the end of the week, look over your notes. Look for common themes. Look for where your interests, insights, ideas – where all of these come together and intersect to point you toward where you find meaning and fulfillment.
Journal Prompts: 8 Questions to Reflect On
- What are you most passionate about?
- What are you good at? What are your skills?
- What are you naturally drawn to?
- What would you do if you weren’t afraid?
- What activities would you pay to do? Why? What do these activities provide you with emotionally?
- What events in your life have you found to be the most inspiring? What type of people inspire you the most? Name 3-5 of them.
- What kinds of movies make you cry? Why? What resonated deeply for you and moved you?
- What annoys, frustrates, enrages, or saddens you? What is it that brings out these intense emotions in you? Which of your principles or values are being violated?
The first 3 questions are pretty standard issue.
“What would you do if you weren’t afraid?” asks you to put aside your fear for a moment or two and consider passions and desires that are buried under your doubts and angst.
“What activities would you pay to do?” asks you to pay attention to those things that mean so much to you that they have a monetary value. Ask yourself why this is so and then, I think the more important question, what feel-good emotions arise from these activities? A sense of accomplishment? Peace-of-mind? Love?
The inspiration questions simply ask you to consider who inspires you. You see in others aspects of yourself that you have the potential to be as well. For me, I am inspired by Joanna Gaines. I love that she’s incredibly creative, had no formal training, and is very family-focused. Plus, she’s not glamorous by any stretch of the imagination – rather the opposite, she’s down-to-earth. I can relate to this so much. Who can you relate to? Who do you aspire to be more like (remember: you are one-of-a-kind so don’t waste time trying to be like someone else. You’re looking outward at others to assess your own greatness in their traits that you see mirrored back to you).
The movies making you cry question is to have you reflect on what deeply moves you. This is a clue to what may be meaningful and fulfilling in your life. Relationships, a fulfilling career…dig deep on this one and see what you come up with.
What annoys you? This series of questions asks you to reflect on what triggers these emotions for you? These deeply felt emotions are linked to what moves you in regards to your values and principles being violated. This is important. Your values and principles are like guideposts for you. They’ll lead you to your life purpose(s) and direction as well.
Those are the 8 journal prompts to get you started on your life purpose quest. I know that when you spend time over the week reflecting on these questions, you’ll have a lot more clarity at the end of the 7 days. A lot of people spend their entire lives not aligned with their life purpose. They’re not consciously choosing a path. They’re living unconsciously. And that’s okay. That’s their choice and I honor that.
Really, I think if we simplified the whole life purpose thing for everybody, it would be one thing:
Your life purpose is to love…
But, we’re all unique and that purpose is expressed in so many different ways. You’ll find your own way of expressing it.
In the meantime, do this exercise and see what comes up for you.
I have one last recommendation – a coaching tool I use with my clients who are seeking their life purpose: They’re called CALLING CARDS.
They’re available for purchase on Amazon. Using them is super simple and goes really nicely with this exercise as well.
Disclosure: This page contains affiliate links, meaning I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you.