Tips For Finding Your Life Purpose
Articles Inspirational articles from Hay House authors
Tips For Finding Your Life PurposeDancing With The Stars Contestant Offers Career Wisdom
Editor's Note: Tavis Smiley, Hay House author of Fail Up - 20 Lessons on Failure, is on Dancing With The Stars! Tune in to ABC on Mondays at 8 PM/7 Central and call: 1-800-868-3412 to vote for Tavis!
As an entrepreneur, I encourage people, especially young people, not to go looking for a job. I tell kids to take the word “job” out of their vocabulary: “As gifted, skilled, and talented as you are, I want you to discover your calling, find your purpose, and take action.”
Our troubled world needs visionaries. Money is important, I know that. But the sole pursuit of money can lead to an empty life. Find that vocation, that calling, that purpose you are uniquely suited for — become the best at it, and I sincerely believe you will get paid.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. quoting Ralph Waldo Emerson, put it this way: “If a man can write a better book, preach a better sermon, or make a better mousetrap, than his neighbor, though he build his house in the woods, the world will make a beaten path to his door.” My refrain on Dr. King’s advice is: Build that mousetrap better than anybody else, and Wal-Mart will find you!
The point is not really about mousetraps or making money. It’s about perfecting the gift and addressing the need. When you perfect the gift, the need becomes apparent. If you are passionately driven to serve children and perfect a unique way to serve them, there is a place for you in abandoned communities throughout this country.
We can best give people what they want (and what they need) when we are authentic. If we are true to who we are, our gift will make room for itself. It will expand and open up opportunities for you to do more and to help more people. In our fast-paced, superficial society, it’s hard to get centered. It’s difficult for us to get comfortable with our true gifts. Often, as we try to keep up with the pace of the world, we attempt 10 million things and never discover our true vocation, our true purpose. The challenge is to find ways to mute the noise and hone in with laser-like precision on who you truly are.
I believe that we are all here for a reason. We are charged to discover our unique gift and use it to make sure that this earth is in a little better condition on the day we exit than it was on the day we entered. We begin that journey of discovery with simple questions: What burdens your soul? If seeing homeless people causes you to break down and cry, find a way to lift that burden. Let your soul burden point you to your calling — define your passion and audaciously set out to make a difference in people’s lives.
When my “need” met my “passion,” things seemed to flower and flourish for me. I’ve learned to cultivate my gifts and think long and hard before I change lanes. Yes, I continue to pursue countless interests — that’s how I’m hardwired — I appear on radio and TV, write books, and operate communication and advocacy enterprises. However, none of these activities falls outside of my core gifts. They are all vertically integrated pillars of my passion.
Here’s the bottom line: You can’t give the people what they want until you know what you really want, and you have to be as passionate about both your vision and its manifestation. In 2011, I celebrated 20 years in broadcasting because I had no other choice. So avoid potholes on the road of life, such as what other people think you should do, or even what might seem like the most prudent thing to do. Be still, get clarity, and always be loyal to what you love. For example - I am learning to dance at 50! Here is a video of me doing the Foxtrot- my first dance on Dancing With The Stars with my partner, Sharna Burgess.