By Marc Beauchamp
In my last article I shared 10 distinctions that are foundational to becoming a high performer. The first distinction is to live from a place of alignment with your values and purpose. People who have gotten the results they were striving for don't just know their values and purpose: they live them.
To discover your purpose, you must first determine what core values and ideals will guide you. Values are what we stand for, the compass by which we live. Every decision and action is filtered through our beliefs and value systems. Knowing what you value most and living accordingly will eliminate indecision in your life.
Milton Rokeach, a well-known values expert, defines values as "modes of organizing conduct – meaningful invested pattern principles that guide human action. They are real determinants of behavior, acting as the criteria by which goals (and means) are chosen among alternatives…Values and their hierarchical arrangements thus are observable as choices; they provide a means of studying all human action in a way that culture in its strict normative sense cannot".
He also made five assumptions about the nature of human values:
Your values are sets of beliefs and convictions that let you know what matters most to you. Values are critical because they determine what actions you take along your path. Living by your own high ideals or principles gives you a foundation and a sense of consistency. Knowing your core values opens the doorway to the mind.
Once you understand the importance of values, it's time to discuss your purpose, which can also be called mission, quest, grand purpose, philosophy, creed or calling. Many of us still struggle to find our true purpose let alone live it. Your purpose has always been with you. You just may not have uncovered it yet. Or maybe you've known what your purpose is but let your limiting beliefs, thoughts and feelings stop you from pursing it.
Most people live a divided life. They spend their time between what they have to do to earn a living and what they want to do to find joy or meaning. They are choosing to make a living rather than designing a life. Their business or career is not in alignment with their life purpose. This creates duality and unfulfillment.
People living their purpose do what they love and love what they do. There is no separation. They have a "mighty why," described by George Bernard Shaw, as follows: "This is the true joy of life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one, the being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; the being a force of nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy."
Your purpose isn't work, a have to do, a burden or a responsibility. It is your life, your reason for being on this planet, the direction you are moving. Your purpose is your inspiration, motivation and sense of who you are as a human being. It's the reason the creator brought you to this place at this time.
Your purpose should excite and inspire you to action. It should make your heart beat faster, and expand your mind. It is the essence of who you are. Ultimately, your purpose aligns with your individual pursuits and your loved ones, those people who mean the most to you, the ones you'd sacrifice everything for.
To gain fruther clairty on your purpose, values, goals and the legacy you want to leave the world, please access my complimentary Lifestyle Design Workshop at www.surviveandthrive.biz/resources.
Marc Beauchamp is author of Survive and Thrive in the Merchant Services Industry and founder of Bankcard Life, a community for payments professionals. He is offering a free copy of his book to all payments professionals at www.bankcardlife.com/greensheet. Marc welcomes your comments and feedback at email@example.com.
The Green Sheet Inc. is now a proud affiliate of Bankcard Life, a premier community that provides industry-leading training and resources for payment professionals. Click here for more information.
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