The Aware Athlete       

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Five Tips For Clarifying Your Purpose In Life

Posted by on September 3, 2018 at 11:45 AM

  1.  Ask questions such as: What would you do if money was no issue? What do you enjoy doing? What is stopping you from doing what you want? What comes naturally to you? What are your values? What things have you done in the past that demonstrated gift or leadership, that perhaps created enjoyment, encouragement understanding, comfort, or inspiration for others? What do you find yourself doing with your spare time? What do you really hate doing and why? Is there anything you feel compelled to do or be to make the world a better place ??? hint don't look for only big things or think only of the whole world, think of the deep things inside you, they may be small and delicate as well as big and fierce.
  2. Make time for mindfulness In todays busy world with most of us spending 40+ hours/ week at work, 8 hr/day sleeping, and several hours eating, commuting, preparing for work, and then coming home and paying attention to family an entire week can go by quickly and with no real downtime. Try to build a little time into each day to focus on your inward needs instead of only the external concerns we all have. Time in nature, running, hiking, camping or simply sitting on a bench to eat lunch in the glorious sunshine can have a healthy restorative effect. Take a quiet vacation even a short one occasionally. Nothing dulls our awareness of our own spirit more than habitual constant business.
  3. Embody Strength. Find out what it is like to live with a neutral balance posture that carries over into a balanced life. Dr. Feldenkrais, a pioneer in neuroplasticity defined good posture as a posture that allows you to move in any direction and any time without prior preparation. Unlike the common idea of good posture as a static rigid verticality, Feldenkrais saw a vertical standing achieved through good use of, that is good balance on the bones of the skeleton so that posture could involve minimal use of the muscles and thus minimal effort as a starting place for human movement. From this poised, relaxed position a person could move, up, down, left, right, forward, or backward or combinations of these with ease. In fact due to the unique human high center of gravity in standing and narrow base of support on only two legs humans can initiate movement in any direction just by allowing their center of mass located just above the pelvis to move in any direction. Try standing and allowing the ankles to bend just barely enough to feel that you must move forward. That was very easy wasn't it? Just to slightest hint of allowing the center of gravity to move forward, just a little thought and you are walking. Actors know that how we hold are bodies is indicative of emotional states. They will hang their heads to express a difficult emotion or they may stand taller to express something like confidence. By deliberately and constantly using an easy standing that relies on a tall torso balanced over the bones you have a powerful tool that can be used to create a more balanced inner life, one not totally distracted by external concerns. Experiment with this way of standing and moving through a day or read some of Dr Feldenkrais' books to go deeper.
  4. Don't go to far afield in your search When we begin to think in terms of purpose and personal destiny we are sometimes looking for something big and outside ourselves, something that we can't quite grasp, something that needs to be revealed to us. While it is true that most of us use only 5 or 10% of our true potential and there are so many things available for us to learn in life and the amount of personal expansion that we can do is unlimited, there is another thing to consider when you begin. The reason you were put here has never been so far away. The things that you have always wanted to do, the things that you were always naturally inclined to do have been with you since you were a child. We often negate our gifts, and inclinations because society says that we can't make money doing that or that is not of much value. So we look elsewhere and we find nothing. Look close to home. I remember stories I could tell about being what I enjoyed as a child. I remember going to my grandmother's house for a day or two and I would have to take a sketch pad and perhaps a book. In all the years. Through all my years of making a living I have always wanted to come back to my love of visual art and through it the expression of certain ideas. I have come back to that and now make time for painting. I could look back to my childhood for examples of leadership, the foundations of ability to teach and a love of nature among other things. I will leave you with one other example. Mark Allen, six time world Ironman champion may have been looked down on by some because of the amount of time he devoted to the very new sport of triathlon. Who could make a living doing that? Years after winning all of his titles Mark Allen has made a career of inspiring and coaching others. He is still at the top of a profession that might not have existed except for athletes like himself who chose to dedicate themselves to it. Mark Allen's love of endurance sports has been with him all his life. Don't look too far afield when you begin to explore your purpose it has been right in front of you in the little details all your life.
  5. Life is a process There is a certain simplicity in finding your purpose. There are two real factors that make if complicated. The first is that we are taught from and early age so many things that will fit us into society but will dull us to the knowledge of ourselves. It is a difficult thing to remove by stages the mask that society has placed on us. The second is that life is a process. We don't know all of life's twists and turns until we get there. Life itself is complicated. Please don't think that you can fully and ultimately know the fullness of your purpose without a lifetime of exploration. I leave you with a final word, keeping digging, keep learning, keep listening, keep asking, keep expanding.

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