Sunday 2:02pm 15June08
Today’s podcast (Episode 3) from Dr. Eric Maisel is on Life Purpose Statements
His podcast is Purpose-Centred Life - A Plan for Authentic Living. His podcasts and others can be found at Personal Life Media
I have to admit that he tests my belief in how you can find inspiration and/or something you can use from all angles and beliefs. I cringe everytime he mentions that he is an atheist but in the same breath I hear him offer something meaningful or something I can use and it brings up the question that I heard or read once, "Do you know what kind of person wrote that cook book you use? Does it matter?"
So I have to ask repeatedly, does it matter that he is an atheist? Not really. He offers some thought provoking work. And as always, I take what I can use and leave the rest. But I thought I should mention it in case you decide to check out his podcast and think, "What the heck? The guy's an atheist and you go into all your issues about whatever."
The torrential downpour begins outside and I chuckle at how, if I hadn't made myself sit down and work on my weekly Support U promise to myself that I'd be standing in the middle of the distillery district with my wet clothes clinging to me like band-aids.
Anyhow, Eric Maisel callse them life purpose statements I know them as mission statements. I think they are pretty much the same.
He discusses his 5 steps for a Creative life as:
1 - Decide to matter
2 - you must make meaning
3 - Identify your life purpose and articulate your life purpose statement
4 - Hold the intention to fulfill your life purposes
5 - Passionately act to fulfill your life purposes
For number 3 - identify and articulate your life purpose, he has you ask, What are my life purposes? (know, articulate, memorize, & believe in them). What are your reasons for living? What roles do you intend to play in life? Those roles have to be about the stuff that's big enough to count, like fighting against injustice or eradicating poverty.
Then he gives the 5 components for your life purposes:
1 - Make use of your talents/ gifts/ abilities.
2 - Do so every day
3 - Do so in the service of truth telling and other important values
4 - Get satisfaction out of life
5 - Get satisfaction through love and work
and from all of the above make a Life Purpose Statement.
What I really like the thought of is choosing the roles I intend to play in life. I know most of the people like myself who identify themselves as caretakers often say so grudgingly. I certainly do. It can be exhausting being a caretaker to grown ups but when I take that natural disposition and target it somewhere else like on animals or children it's something that warms my heart. As most people know about me, if I could have an animal sanctuary I would! I'd be way too happy knee deep in animal shit knowing that I saved another animal's life and improved its quality of life. What's a little shit? Or even a lot? ha ha!
Clearly that's something that needs to go in my Life Purpose Statement.
What are my reasons for living? For me responsibility has always been another value that has cropped up. As I mature (will I ever really?) I see that not everything has to be my responsibility nor does what someone else says should be my responsibility. So the question I want to ask is, what will I choose to be responsible for? I neither have the motivation and stamina nor the financial abundance to save the world but to be responsible for my little patch of the earth. That's an idea I can work with. Because, of course, if we all took care of our little patch of the earth, giving, sharing, loving (and those who can go further than that actually do) -- we could heal the world in a day.