I occasionally go through “purging mode” where I feel compelled to clear out stuff that doesn’t fit my life anymore. And sometimes when we clear out old stuff, we stumble across a treasure.
That’s what happened to me.
I recently tackled my night table. This was no small feat. Its two drawers had been stuffed full for so long that I avoided them and no longer really knew what was inside. All I knew was that the drawers didn’t open or close properly anymore.
I tackled the project with gusto and found lots of stuff to give away or recycle. And in the process I found a gem – an old journal of mine from 1998.
This entry really hit me:
August 24, 1998
…It’s scary – in my daily pursuits, I’ve almost let myself forget my own needs, desires, driving force. To learn. To quest. To challenge myself. To be fulfilled. I can squelch these needs for some time, but am then given the occasional gift of nausea, headache, heartburn etc. as a reminder that I am not living to my full potential, that my soul is not fulfilled.
And I do accept these signs. And I listen. But I don’t know what to do.
…I can’t just let myself slip away any longer. It’s not fair to me, and it’s not fair to the universe… I have to believe that someday I will know my life’s purpose, but for now, I will listen closely to what the universe is telling me, and trust in my place in it.
Wow. It reminded me that for many years I felt lost and empty. Although everything looked good on the surface, there was an aching void inside of me that steadily grew and became very painful.
When I stumbled across that diary, I was proud of the “old me.” Because even when I felt lost, I listened within to find signs of which way to step next, and I did my best to trust that my path would slowly reveal itself to me. It wasn’t easy.
I am grateful to say that I now know my purpose: to inspire and empower others to recognize the good in themselves and achieve their potential. And that feels so right (my shoulders drop just thinking about it) because it’s an expression of my soul.
And I now know that although I felt lost for so long, the clues to finding what was “missing” were there all along. I just didn’t see them. I needed an outside perspective, someone to help shine a light within and guide me back to me. So I followed my inner nudges and met with a life coach, and that made all the difference for me.
That’s all we can do, right? Follow our inner nudges and take a step forward in faith. Then, listen within, and if it feels right, take another step. There’s no right or wrong direction, just amazing experiences and (sometimes very challenging) lessons learned.
What I do know is this: we each have our own purpose – our raison d’être – and when we know what it is, it becomes the foundation for everything in our lives. Then we’re able to live inspired and “on purpose.” And it’s such a beautiful thing.