Finding Your Unique Purpose

September 8, 2017

The woman directly in front of me in aerobics class collapsed to the ground. I stood motionless in my white Reebok high tops shocked and conflicted – wishing I could help but knowing I’d do more harm than good. Another woman in our class moved with command towards the woman on the floor. She began giving CPR. If only I’d paid more attention in the lifeguard training class I took years before. The ambulance would arrive five minutes later, and the paramedics would comment the woman who administered CPR saved a life that day.

This event would become my college speech class topic. I started out a bundle of nerves but once I got beyond myself, I passionately shared how normal moments can flip upside down in an instant. We either stand helpless as I did that day or we can step in and save a life. Over half the class would get CPR certified.

Recently I got to speak to a group of 550 children’s healthcare providers to encourage them to be a bright spot in the lives of their patients. As I stood on that stage sharing our story, that amazing feeling of “I’m doing EXACTLY what I was created to do” overwhelmed my spirit again.

And to make things even sweeter, on the same day I made that speech my husband Douglas also got a job offer that is a perfect fit for his passion.

Have you ever experienced knowing you’re doing exactly what God designed you for? It’s the elusive feeling many long for but often fear moving towards. Status quo feels safer and at times seems easier.

Here are 3 key ingredients for anyone thinking about making a big, bold life change:

01.  Clarity

Before you take a huge leap, you need some clarity to “find your why”. I’m not talking every single detail spelled out in Times New Roman bold font on a perfectly pulled together frame-able powerpoint file.

What you’re looking for is something much simpler: high level clarity on your natural strengths, passions, and interests. Shoot for a goal of spending 80%+ of your future time doing things you enjoy.

For me, getting clarity on my “why” started several years ago with some “what” questions:

  • At the end of my life, what do I want to be remembered for?
  • What are my unique God given gifts?
  • What gives me energy and what drains me?

Inspiring growth through words is my personal mission. Once I had that statement written down, the future started to get clearer as writing, speaking, and encouraging others to grow naturally fit into it. Friends and family who know me best confirmed… yes, that sounds like you.

For my husband Douglas, he loves cars. He enjoys anything with an international vibe. He’s a good listener and likes helping people. For years he’s struggled to figure out what to do career wise. Nothing seemed like the right fit.

Then one random day nine months ago he said, “I think I might enjoy selling European cars.” The light bulb went off. Of course! How had we not seen this ten years earlier? We would mention it to friends and family and one consistent line keep coming back – “That is a great fit.”

Like a pair of well tailored pants, you look and feel your best when you’re wearing something that fits you properly.

02.  Courage

For my fellow planners out there, this word can stir up the heebie jeebies. We plan, contingency plan, and then develop contingency plan B, C, and D. But you can’t be courageous if you spend all your time planning behind a desk and never move.

“Beyond the fear lies everything we want.” — Benno Dorer

Real courage comes from resting in the confidence where God guides, He will provide. Stepping out without all the i’s dotted and t’s crossed. Moving towards the future.

You’ll never get to a new destination with your feet super-glued to the ground. At some point you have to jump.

Phil Knight founder of Nike put it this way in his book “Shoe Dog”:  “I was following a path that felt like my path, and though I wasn’t sure where it would lead, I was ready to find out.”

Even though we rarely know exactly where the path will take us, unless you step out you’ll never be on your way to a different future.

03.  Community

As you move towards something new, you’ll be best served to become a student again. Learn, learn, learn. Mastery comes from new knowledge and lots and lots and lots of practice (did I mention practice?).

Who can become a new mentor or guide on your journey? Who can become a new friend pursuing something similar that you can connect with monthly to share ideas, lighten the learning curve, get feedback?

“Two are better than one, for they have good return for their labor.”  Ecclesiastes 4:9


You can make a change with some clarity, courage, and community to support you along the way. Find your why.


Categories: Courage Faith Growth Inspiring Purpose Transformation
Tags: clarity, community, courage, find your why, god's purpose for you, great fit, growth, life purpose, living your calling, purpose, speaking, unique purpose,

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