Perspective of purpose

Stopping to put things in perspective can make a big difference. When you work at getting to the core of what your life is all about, you begin to understand that most of those external things you see as necessities are not really necessities at all. Each one of them is merely one way, one way out of many, of expressing a deeper purpose. Even if you did not have your job, even if you could not afford your current lifestyle, you would still be you. You would still have the same driving purpose, and you would most certainly be able to find some other way to express it.

If you’re at the airport waiting to travel to another city and you miss your flight, there will be another flight to eventually take you where you want to go. You may have to experience a little inconvenience, you may have to wait until the next day, you may have to buy another ticket, but you have not forever lost the chance to get where you want to go. It’s important to remember that the flight is not the destination. If you miss the flight you have not lost the destination. There is another way to get there. Even if the airport is closed because of bad weather, you can rent a car and drive to where you want to go. Likewise, your job is not irrevocably tied to your purpose in life. It may be a great way of expressing that purpose, but it is not the only way.

If you feel that you’re working at your job because you have to do it, because you’re somehow forced by fate to be toiling at this particular activity, it can work against you regardless of what happens. With such a negative attitude, when you’re working at the job you resent it and if you were to lose the job you’d be in danger of becoming completely lost.

On the other hand, when you see your job as something you’ve chosen to do, and you understand how you yourself have connected that choice to the things that are truly important to you, it frees you from the resentment. It also frees you from the sense of dependence.

The purpose of your life does not depend on the external things, whatever they may be. It is the other way around. You have connected to those external things precisely because of your purpose, precisely because you have some reason to do so. Those external things are sure to change over time, because that is their nature. But even if you lose them completely, you have not lost your purpose. You have not lost that which is truly important to you. When the day-to-day complexities of life are assaulting you from every direction, it’s important to remember that.


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