Life Purpose- Find It and Live it

If you feel like something in miising in life, you are not alone. I felt that way until 2000 when I died in the hospital after receiving an overdose of pain medication the doctor administered.. The brief death was a sacred experience.  Moreover, returning to life brought me strength and resolve to get on with “my work.”

Have you discovered your life purpose yet?

If you haven’t, don’t feel alone. 

I didn’t know what my work, my calling, or my choices were around “working with parents and families.” I had already been a teacher, a counselor, a therapist, and an author with parenting books.I expected my purpose to manifest easily as if someone walked through my door and presented me with options. You are right if you guessed that it didn’t happen that way. 

Don’t feel alone if you have not yet discovered your purpose. The reason is likely due to the fast pace of everyday life. When do you have time for yourself…to think about changing jobs, or even going it on your own and working from home? It can be easy to find yourself going to a job that you don’t like and feel meaningless at times.

The first step to discovering your purpose is taking some time for yourself. When you turn inward and take time to ponder, write, meditate, or review your options, you open feelings associated with passion. One technique I used was to state my intention aloud:  

I want to know without reservation how I can best earn a living by loving what I do!

  Living your life in a way that serves your purpose is extremely important if you wish to be happy. There are several ways you can attempt to discover the meaning of your life:

  1. Describe your ideal day. Project yourself several years into the future and imagine that your life is virtually perfect. How would your life look?  Are you working? What type of work are you doing? What do you do all day? Who is in your life?

Now that you know what the end looks like, what can you do today to take the first step in that direction?

2. Try austerity. Go camping in a remote place. Take time to enjoy nature and sit with yourself. When you’re alone and have clear intention, sometimes the answer become apparent.

3. Volunteer. Find an organization in your community that interests you. Doing something worthwhile can be an excellent way to discover your purpose. Even if you come up short, at least you’ll have done something significant.

4. Assume you can do the impossible. When anything is possible, what would you do? Take action to bring your dreams to life.

5. Write. Perhaps the most efficient way to discover your life’s purpose is to spend an hour writing. At the top of your paper write, “My life’s purpose.” Now spend the next 60 minutes writing whatever pops into your mind.

I did this exercise and wrote from a stream of consciousness as opposed to focused topic. I learned that my purpose hasn’t changed from my twenties. I still like to teach as well as learn. I love to care about others and offer counsel. This stirs up positive feelings. Moreover, I can see myself doing it. 

6, Investigate a new hobby. We all have at least one activity we’ve been putting off until a more convenient time. Doing something new exposes you to new ideas and thoughts. Now is the time to jump in and get started. You might be surprised what you discover.

7. Do something that terrifies you. Skydiving? Public speaking? You might find your life’s purpose during the process of conquering this fear.

8. Spend a day inspired. From the time you wake up until the time you go to bed, attempt to spend every moment inspired. The right books, music, and movies can help you maintain an inspired mental state.You’ll believe you can do anything. What would you do?

9. Ask yourself what you would do if you had $10 million. How would you spend your time? Can you figure out a way to make a living doing one of the activities you would be willing to do for free if you had the time?

Keep revisiting these tips until you’ve found something that really excites you. When you see your purpose, there will be no doubt. Avoid spending all of your life thinking and planning. Get busy living.

Finding your life’s purpose adds meaning to your living. 

Behavioral Regulation-2-Administer Small Doses of Fun

Behavioral Regulation-2-Administer Small Doses of Fun

Administering fun in small daily doses will be the first challenge for coach and parents alike. After all, what parent thinks about fun when their personal energies are sucked into

  • A perpetual whirlwind of
  • Frequent phone calls from teachers about a child’s behaviors, and
  • Unending fears or concerns for the welfare and future of a child?

 

[ctt template=”5″ link=”CIh11″ via=”yes” ]This is precisely why activities must be re-introduced in small manageable doses, so as not to cause further overwhelm. @parent_coach[/ctt]

You can be certain that the stress the parent experiences and has experienced, has robbed them of their ability to be creative. Their tolerance levels are stuck in a stress state of inflexibility.

Coaching How To Stretch and have Fun

When, in the course of the coaching relationship, it is time to stretch a client to consider initiating a fun activity with child or family, don’t make them think about it too much. Simplicity makes for an easier transition. Trust me, having to think about it will hurt. The brain under extreme or long-term stress suffers mind-blowing effects, literally!

Stress prevents the frontal cortex in the brain from processing and accessing stored or new information. When you ask, “What can you do to bring more connective fun into your daily lives?” and your client responds with,

  • “I just can’t think!” ,
  • “I’m so confused, I can’t sort it all out!” 
  • “I wouldn’t know where to begin.”

These statements reveal that the frontal cortex is overloaded, and is not immediately capable of making a clear decision. Thus, It makes sense that your client will have a hard time thinking of part or all of a creative plan for fun in the family. Additionally, it may be a case where they just don’t feel like doing it.

When parents are stressed and exhausted, it is difficult for them to ascertain where they will access all this new positive energy you are about to require of them. Coaches make considerations as to the neurophysiology of the parent, as well as the child. Therefore, parents must begin with the simplest of activities. Recall the analogy of the overfilled glass of water or the bucket ready to tip. Use these analogies to help your clients visualize or physically demonstrate where personal stress levels are for them and their child.

Focus on Being Goal Oriented

We are helping the parent to be goal oriented. We want parent’s to experience success and see the measure of their labors. We are not just filling them up with busy time activities because there is a purpose to every action they undertake. With this in mind we:

  • Begin by helping the parent to identify the end goal of the activity.
  • Ask the parent to articulate what they want.
    • They can write it down and then read it back to you. This way mind, heart, and body are fully engaged in the process.
  • What do they want to get? What will they give? What does the outcome look like, as in these four examples:
    • I want this activity to bring our family closer together.
    • I want this activity to help me feel better about my ability to parent in this difficult situation.
    • I want this activity to let my child know how much I love them.
    • This activity will help us communicate better and show that we can still have fun together.

Setting an end goal and keeping it in sight helps the parent to resist giving up when the first few attempts do not go well.

(The prior statement is a huge clue to each of you, that this is a process. Families will experience a learning curve depending upon the amount of conflict or stress in their environment, and with their child.)

  • Discuss a minimum period for a parent to engage actively with child or family. 15- 20 minutes is appropriate.

This recommendation is tailored to the family situation, and may have to be adjusted to meet the parent or child’s needs. For instance, 10 minutes of interaction is a lot for some parents or children, while 30 minutes is a great fit for other families to begin with. A joint determination of the period of time is made by parent and coach depending on the parent/child’s level of stress, and the ability to tolerate new interactions. Keep in mind, that additions to or changes in routines, and conditioned negative expectations of interactions between family members are all transitions, which upset the balance as the child or family knows it now.

Consistency and accountability affords greater success for parents.

See also: Behavioral Regulation 1 and Behavioral Regulation 3

 

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