Helping people uncover their purpose, giving them a sense of why they are here, and how to live a life of significance, should be a part of every CTE students journey. We tend to use passion and purpose interchangeably, but our passion is the fuel that keeps us going as we live into our purpose, and our purpose never changes. How you live into your purpose might look differently depending on what season of life you are in, that’s your vision, but your purpose will always be constant.
Why is purpose important? Let me offer an analogy. What’s your favorite meal? Mine is a nice medium rare steak, seasoned just right it’s hard to beat. Well I use a knife and a fork to eat that steak. That fork was designed with a purpose, to use the tines to pick up food. Now what if I gave you a spoon and a knife, could you still eat that steak? Listen, you could give me a hammer and I’d still get it done but using a spoon or a hammer to eat a steak is going to be much more difficult, and I’m certainly not going to be efficient or happy about it. You and I are like the fork, we have a purpose we were designed for, and knowing that purpose will allow us to put ourselves in the best place to be successful. Are you a spoon trying to do the work of a fork? It’s why we find some work much harder to do than others, because we aren’t doing what we were designed and created for. Helping our students discover their purpose will add meaning to the learning they are doing, and the life they are leading.
How do you find your purpose? First, you must believe you have one, something that is designed only for you, and if you don’t discover it and live into it, the world does without it. Second, understand that it’s an inside job. It’s going to require some inner work, quiet space without distraction to connect with you and get into your heart space, that’s where you will find some answers. Third, identify your passions and your values. Where does your mind naturally drift off to when you aren’t focusing on something? Who are you with? What are you doing in that space? What are you seeking? These are all clues to what you are passionate about and what you value. Finally, capture it in a short sentence or two. For example:
Through my positivity, humor, and empathy, I widen the awareness of leaders to encourage, love, and value the people they lead.
Then put it to action. Your purpose is supported by your vision and your goals support your vision. Your vision is how you are going to live into your purpose, what do you have to do to be in alignment with your purpose, and then set the goals to achieve that vision. Are you going to touch the lives of 500 people, and you are sought out to provide cultural transformation for organizations? Will you write a book that sells 1 million copies and be globally recognized for your contributions? It’s your future, you decide and then set the goals to achieve that future. Together we can achieve anything, we are CTE.