Monday, March 12, 2007

The Success Principles ~ Principle 2

Jack Canfield's second success principle is: Be Clear Why You're Here. This is a very short chapter on a rather large topic, but he does provide 2 helpful approaches. He suggests you look toward what brings you joy, and he provides a short "fill in the blanks" exercise to help you come up with a life purpose statement. I've done a lot of work in this area both for myself and with my clients. If this is an area you're interested in exploring, I have two books that I can recommend unreservedly: Finding Your Own North Star by Martha Beck and Callings by Gregg Levoy.

Getting clear on why you're here is very powerful. It can provide you with immense focus and empower you to make great decisions and set useful boundaries. It's also challenging. At least that's what I've experienced and witnessed. In my personal work coming up with a life purpose statement, I noticed that I consistently played with the words and phrasing so that it included as much as humanly possible. I didn't want to leave anything out. That often left me feeling like I was being clever but not really getting any closer to knowing my purpose.

The other thing that can feel overwhelming is believing that there's only one right answer, and it's hovering out there somewhere in the mist, waiting for you to find it. And all the time you're looking, you're in a state of anxiety wondering if it's really out there, whether you'll ever find it, and feeling incomplete without it. I'm starting to think that's a load of hooey! What's seeming more true to me is that your life purpose is that magical point where you make a decision to put the things that you're naturally drawn to at the centre of your life. That's it. Easy-peasy.

Over time, I've come to realize that certain themes in my life are consistent:
  • artistic expression
  • self-development
  • voraciously enjoying life

That's me in a nutshell, right there. And for a life purpose statement, my current one is:

I create opportunities for discovery, magic and joy.

I'd love to hear yours. Remember, it doesn't have to be perfect or written in stone. It can just be your thoughts on your purpose from where you stand today. That's a great start.


Unknown said...

Hi Jamie,
It's so great that your are mapping out high moments in his book.

I've struggled with this concept for 25 years or so. Like you, I was overstuffing the suitcase. I like you mission statement. It fits you really well, and it leaves room for the unexpected. I'll be interested to read what others write here.

Also, I loved your subway story. I have no answer. If only Glinda the Good Witch had descended from the subway ceiling...

Leah said...

that's *exactly* what you do, jamie!! love it!

i really loved "callings" by gregg levoy. great book.

i've written out my life purpose statement and i've done that thing where i tried to jam everything into it. lately, i've been writing the affirmation of, "i inspire others to infuse their life with creativity."

Anonymous said...

Such glimpses of wisdom here Jamie! You give me so much to think about - I haven't even come up with a wish yet, and here you are with life statements! ;) I like the sound of 'Callings', too. Must go in search of them...

Thanks so much for the thoughts that you provoke, Jamie, and for the positive inspiration you provide.

Have a smiley, happy day :)

Suzie Ridler said...

I'm currently going through deep transformation so I am unable to expression my mission statement at the moment but know that I am getting closer. Very exciting!

Not only do you create these amazing opportunities Jamie, you also share them with others which makes you such a blessing in all of our lives.

Claudia said...

That´s wonderful statement! Positive and full. I have made it my purpose to "Spread happiness,colour and joy and help others see the good in themselves".

la vie en rose said...

this sounds like a good book...i've read the martha beck book and really enjoyed it...