Do you ever get that empty feeling? Like you are yearning to create more meaning or be more meaningful in life? At one time or another many of us experience that feeling of not knowing our place and/or impact in the world. Feeling like an itty bitty piece of a gigantic puzzle might make one feel lost, lonely or inconsequential.
With a wonderful family, supportive friends, great job - an all-around good life - there were days when I felt like I needed to make a bigger footprint in my community. I felt a hole in my happiness and, after some reflection, realized I needed to make some kind of contribution to this big world.
What I found was the missing piece to this puzzle of emptiness…PURPOSE. And, the most important thing about this revelation was that living a life of purpose is about giving not getting.
Viktor Frankl was an Austrian psychiatrist and Holocaust survivor. Through his experience as an inmate at concentration camps he came to learn the importance of finding meaning in life…even in the worst experiences. He said, “Don’t aim at success. The more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one’s personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one’s surrender to a person other than oneself.”
In a nutshell and summarized from Jakob Sakol, author of “Living on Purpose – An Uncommon Guide to Finding, Living, and Rocking Your Life’s Purpose.” “You want love from people? Love people! You want more money? Help people make money! You want more joy in life? Give joy to people! Sounds so simple, right?”
Before I personally did any research about living a life of purpose I accidentally stumbled upon my missing puzzle piece. Through Vela Adventures, I became very passionate and personally invested in growing our Women in Adventure Speaker Nights. Sharing the stories of the remarkable women out there…with the intent to empower other women and to donate funds to a non-profit…became my purpose. I realized that these nights were deep labors of love and realized that the swell in my life was from having this purpose.
While I already had all those wonderful ingredients to a “charmed” life (the above-mentioned family, friends, community, etc.), and appreciating how lucky I am to have these cherished ingredients; being able to make an impact - no matter how small - added something more that I needed.
Living for a purpose doesn’t have to be a challenge or a huge undertaking or some big initiative. Dedicate a purpose by giving something of yourself…be it your time, your humor, your friendship, your money, your knowledge. Start small and figure out which of your gifts you’d like to share and purposefully share those gifts with your world. You can complete your puzzle and be someone’s puzzle piece to a happier life.
Vela is all about fun and adventure!