Life purpose and soul purpose are very closely connected to living a meaningful life, in fact, a meaningful life is just a synonym for a purposeful life.

Firstly, I want to ask you a few questions.

How do you feel when you wake up in the morning? Do you feel energized and enthusiastic? Are you looking forward to the day or do you just want to roll over and go back to sleep? Do you get Monday morning blues and yearn for Friday to come?

I think it’s worth recognizing that if we wake up in that kind of mood, the chances are we’re not getting a great deal of joy and meaning out of our life. I know we all have bad days but ultimately, if you think about it, how many people are going to a job every day that they really don’t enjoy; they have no passion for it.

We’ve all been subjected to programming and indoctrination to work for the elites, the so-called rat race, the Deep State agenda, and some people haven’t been able to break free from that programming. So they go to work every day, perhaps have a very boring, repetitive, uninteresting job, and they’re enduring it for the sake of getting a paycheck at the end of the month and being able to pay the bills. Then they get home at the end of the day, they’re too exhausted to do anything other than slump in front of the TV and get more programming.

Also, how often are people pushed into doing things to meet other people’s expectations, rather than following their heart and doing what they really want to do? Many children are subjected to this when they’re growing up. They have this wonderful ambition to achieve an “out of the box” career or path and the parents say, “No, you can’t do that. It’s not secure. It’s not responsible. You’re never going to make enough money.” And so they get shoehorned into the conventional path of working to live and living to work.

Other people have been programmed into thinking that they have to do certain things to achieve a certain status, rather than doing what really brings them joy and happiness. You see it in the corporate world; people climbing the corporate ladder and getting the bigger car and the bigger house and accumulating “stuff”, but deep inside they’re going through inner conflict because they’re not doing what they actually came here to do.

Your Soul Contract

To dive into a metaphysical perspective, we come here with a soul contract and we’re here to evolve and do certain things. If we don’t do that, then we have this conflict within us between our ego and our higher self.

Our ego is the part of our psyche that is linked to our physical incarnation, the part of us that thinks we’re purely physical, that we’re vulnerable; the ego is fear-based. The ego wants to project an image that will get admiration and validation. It’s the higher self that really knows what our purpose is, and knows what we came here to do.

When we get that conflict between the ego and the higher self, it really makes us uncomfortable and this is often what causes the “dark night of the soul” where the conflict within us gets so great that we get to the point of saying, “I can’t live like this anymore. There must be something better.” I certainly went through that in 2009.

After transitioning out of corporate life because the values of the organization weren’t in alignment with my values and then starting a business as an internet consultant, I had a major shift that really led me to discover my purpose and to take a completely different path.

If you’re feeling that inner conflict, that feeling within you of tension, unhappiness, and frustration perhaps it’s saying you really need to look at yourself and decide whether you’re doing this for the right reason.

There are people in the Law of Attraction community who say that when you discover your purpose, everything is plain sailing, everything goes smoothly, but that’s definitely not the way it works. The reason is that, as Viktor Frankl said in his book Man’s Search For Meaning that I quoted from in Part 1, we’re here to answer questions. We’re here to make choices and the choices we have to make are often difficult. If we don’t get those questions, if we don’t get those challenges, we’re not going to change and grow.

Victor Frankl says that meaning doesn’t come from a situation of homeostasis, in other words, from things staying the same. Meaning comes from having a “why“. As Nietzsche said, “He who has a why to live for can bear with almost any how.” There’s a well-known quote that says, “If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll end up somewhere else”.

Life Purpose & Soul Purpose

Purpose and meaning are very similar. With that in mind, let me explain the difference between life purpose and soul purpose.

Soul purpose is who you have come here to BE – it is your spiritual and personal growth. Who are you? Who are you here to become in terms of self-growth?

Life purpose is what you have come here to DO. Some people come into the world and they know from a very early age that they want to be a doctor, or an actor, or a lawyer, or whatever it may be. That’s the path that they choose, and that’s the path that they follow.

In my experience, while our soul purpose is unchanging, our life purpose, what we do, can change over a period of time and the reason for this is because life purpose is what provides us with the environment and the situations that present the challenges that we need to fulfill our soul purpose. When you know your purpose, when you know you’re on the right path, you have the determination to keep going even when things get tough.

When I look back, and I look at what I’m doing now in relation to what I was doing in the past, I can see a theme running through all the things in my life that were related to working with people. All the jobs and roles I was playing were providing me with the knowledge and experience I needed to do what I’m doing today, which is coaching and teaching people how to become empowered and fulfill their life and soul purpose.

There’s a really good book by Dan Millman entitled The Life You Are Born To Live – A Guide to Finding your Life Purpose.  His definition of life purpose is what I refer to as soul purpose. The book uses the numerology of your birthdate to determine what your purpose is, from a personal growth point of view. When I looked up my birth date, I discovered that I’m here to work through issues of abundance and power.

I grew up in a situation where my family was quite affluent until I was seven years old. Then my father left and my mother had to bring up three children on her own. My mother struggled to put food on the table and keep a roof over our heads. I was experiencing scarcity, which led me to want the opposite, which was abundance. I also had experiences at school, which were very humiliating and disempowering. I realized later that our early experiences set out the curriculum for what we’re here to work on as our soul purpose. That’s why I became so passionate about helping people to become empowered and create a life of abundance and prosperity which is at the heart of what I’m teaching and coaching now.

Please remember that if we’re here with a soul purpose of self-growth, we’re not going to get it over and done in a flash. It’s why we come here for a lifetime. We’re going to be peeling off multiple layers of the onion, as it were, in terms of our core issues in those particular areas.

I was in my mid-50s, when I really started delving into personal development, awakening, if you like, and starting to learn much more about the Universe and how it works. When I started to recognize what I was carrying in terms of my inner (limiting) beliefs and started to work on them that was really the start of my journey.

In 2010, I moved from the UK to the US to create the Festival of Enlightenment and took a leap of faith. As I said at the time, I jumped off the cliff and hoped the parachute would open! My why was that I felt that I’d been given a mission to accomplish in terms of putting on this festival. In a meditation, I saw the vision of what the festival should be and what it should consist of, that it should be in nature and it should have music, art, and speakers on personal and spiritual development.

The experience of coming to the US from the UK and taking on this project to create the Festival of Enlightenment challenged me on so many levels. It challenged my limiting beliefs – “Who am I to be doing this festival?” and “Why would people want to come to it?” and it also challenged my continuing fears around money. It brought back those experiences in my early life where I felt under threat of not having money, of not having food on the table, and of not being good enough.

So, even though I’d done a lot of inner work, I was still carrying a lot of fears related to money. There were many times during the year leading up to June 2011, when the festival actually happened, when I was challenged to the nth degree, and there were so many situations when I could have just thrown in the towel and said, “Oh, the hell with this, I’m not going to do it. It’s too hard.” But I felt like I’d been given a divine mission, so failure was not an option.

I had to find a way to overcome every challenge and in doing so I was facing up to all the core issues that I came here to resolve as my soul purpose. And things are still coming up to be healed – as I say, it takes a lifetime to overcome these things. But the reason this is important is in relation to meaning. Having a meaningful life, a purposeful life means that when you’ve discovered your purpose, you have a level of commitment that, regardless of the bumps in the road, and the major challenges that you’ll face along the way, you won’t give up because you’ll know deep inside that this is what you’re here to do. That’s how I felt when I was creating the Festival of enlightenment.

It really comes down to the why.

When you know your Why, the why rather than just the what, you won’t be doing things to meet other people’s expectations, or to achieve a certain status, or work on meaningless jobs. People who do that probably haven’t thought through the why of what they’re doing. Some people just drift from day to day without any goals at all. They’re just running on the treadmill of the rat race, just trying to keep going and make ends meet and perhaps they don’t recognize the importance of taking time to really step back and say, “what is it that I want from this life? Is what I’m doing now actually fulfilling that? And if not, what do I need to do to move forward”?

As Viktor Frankl said in his book Man’s Search For Meaning, having a Why was really critical for people to not lose hope, not give up, and stay committed to their future goals.

I invite you to download a free copy of the Dream Achievers Success Kit – The Top 20 Mistakes That Stop You Manifesting Your Dreams. One of the key things I say when it comes to setting goals is to start with the why – the importance of setting goals from the heart, not the head because the why is in your heart and the how is in your head.

This article is an edited extract from the transcript of the Cosmic Creating Show on December 14th, 2019. You can read Part 1 HERE and listen to the show on YouTube.

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Jan Shaw – The Success Alchemist, is a Spiritual Empowerment and Intuitive Success Coach, Success Strategist, Mindset & Manifestation Mentor. She delivers intuitive guidance, spiritual and metaphysical teaching, plus practical life and business success strategies, to support you in fulfilling your Soul Mission and Life Purpose and achieving your highest potential.

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