Feeling stuck? Here’s 3 ways to start exploring your purpose

Lisa Messenger is as bold and captivating in real life as she appears in the print magazines, books and online courses of her disruptive platform, The Collective Hub. Anyone who sits in her presence (as I had the pleasure of doing this week) can’t help but be inspired and uplifted by her purpose: To be an entrepreneur for entrepreneurs, living her life out loud so that she can show others that anything is possible while living her best life.

On every level, (or as Lisa says, with every cell in her body) she’s nailing it. But not just through the traditional avenues of achievement. In a competitive world of success strivers, Lisa sees “failure” as an opportunity for growth and change as a spark to ignite the next flame. Her ‘Live in Conversation’ series is real, honest, insightful, daring and disruptive, and I had the pleasure of joining in on one at one of our much loved local stomping grounds, Bills Fishhouse Port Macquarie. 

As the conversation exploded, my mind buzzed with the creative burstiness in the room as I began piecing together themes to all the wonderful examples of Lisa’s Purpose Journey (if you’re meeting me for the first time, I’m a bit obsessed with helping people connect to their purpose, and feed this obsession through my work at The Posify Group). Lisa’s take-home message was loud and clear: 

If your purpose is driven by an emotional force, something that evokes a feeling and is meaningful, then you can pivot and shift in as many ways needed by which you’d like to deliver it.

In other words:

Be attached not to your product or service, but to the reason you need to put it out into the world. 

 
Lisa Messenger quote.jpg
 

When people lead from a position of purpose, regardless of their background, experience, status, religion or gender, the world leans in. For those embarking on their own purpose journey, now could not be a better time to be alive. The conversation around “How can I find what I’m here to do?” is gaining remarkable air time in workplaces, communities, schools and events like today, and in answering it, Lisa Messenger has the following three tips:

  1. Journal. Everything. Now. Even if you don’t know what you’re journalling, why you’re journalling or where it will go. Just start. In the unknown is where it all begins.
  2. Listen to other people. Other people will recognise and celebrate your strengths looooong before you do. If they’ve spotted something you enjoy doing, then do more of it.
  3. Embrace pain. Creatives, disruptors and innovators are recognising that the lessons are in the pain points. Growth and self awareness are the precious gifts that pain leaves behind.

Without realizing, Lisa spoke directly to three positive psychology interventions being considered beneficial for the development of meaning and purpose:

  1. Journaling: Journalling has long been supported as a way for people to boost their wellbeing, construct meaning from their thoughts and gain insight into the stories that shape their journey
  2. Character strengths: Knowing which of the 24 character strengths are uniquely in your top five can help you direct your purpose goals
  3. Growth out of Suffering: Those who move out of trauma with post-traumatic growth can report a greater sense of meaning to their lives than before they were impacted by the event (although to be clear, this does not mean we must all go through trauma to experience a thriving life, but rather that growth instead of stress can come as a result of traumatic experiences). 

Finding and creating meaning is a yearning all humans have always had. People who dare to be bold and live their life out loud like Lisa start the conversation from which those who are trained in the human sciences can start to gather the themes and build the research. We are all just people, figuring out how to make our way through this wild and wonderful life. For us to contribute positively to the significant changes happening around us, we will each need to bring our ideas, experiences and failures to the table. Thank you Lisa Messenger. And thank you to my courageous friends, old and new, who dare to continue the conversation. 

Mariane Power