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The Pursuit of ‘PURPOSE’


It is end of December again and with year-end comes the reality of setting goals and planning for the upcoming year and beyond.   I have come to accept that writing goals is fundamental to me but converting dreams to actions and ultimately results could be a challenging task.

I have a dream, and the dream is to live a ‘purpose driven life’ but that comes with fully understanding the true definition of ‘purpose’ and embracing mine.  The other day, I read a profound quote which stated: “if you lack wisdom, go on your knees and if you lack knowledge, go to school” thus I picked up a book to increase my knowledge about the pursuit of purpose.

"You and I will never be fully successful in being what we were never born to be.  Your mother or father probably told you that you could be anything you want to be if you put your mind to it.  I don’t want to be the bearer of bad news, but in your opinion, do you think Jack can be a dog if he puts his mind to it?”

Too many of us have given up our perfect, intended selves to become a cheap imitation of others – and yet without any fulfillment.  Who is the real you that has never existed in the world that you have created?  When you know who you are, you won’t try to be what you were not meant to be.  You might be asking, ‘so how do I decide who I am meant to be, given the plethora of choices that are available?’.  The answer is simple: know your purpose".  Excerpt "from Dreaming to Becoming" by Dr. Phinehas Kinuthia.

I am learning that the journey to fulfilling my purpose is a process.  It begins with a commitment to embrace transformation of the inward being and managing my perception-gauge.  My journey to purpose and developing my leadership skills has been transformational because I am learning great lessons and the most valuable of them all is that “great leaders invest in personal, professional, emotional and Spiritual growth because they understand that ‘growth and development is the highest calling of purpose’.   

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An Encounter with ‘Purpose’

An Encounter with ‘Purpose’

During a coaching session with a client recently, she looked around in my office and asked; “what all are you involved in? In other words, what is everything you do for a living”.  My natural tendency whenever this question is asked leans towards listing everything I do and because the list is long, she said; “you do a lot”.   She took it a step further by asking a follow up question; “how in the world do you find time to do all of that”?. 

Even though “doing a lot” could be a measuring gauge for success in our society, I was challenged to re-think and re-consider how I brand myself.  I recognized quickly that branding is all about ‘packaging’ which also requires wisdom.  I was reminded of a statement I once heard which basically said “If you lack knowledge, go to school but if you lack wisdom, go on your knees”.  Needless to say, I went on my knees to pray for understanding and wisdom on how to articulate what I do without sounding overwhelming in the future.   “Sure enough, help came from above.  After persistent prayers, actively listening and patiently waiting, the revelation came.  I was finally able to sum up what I do in a meaningful way. 

Yesterday, I was meeting with the same client and after the session, she said; “Even though I know I need to do something with my life, there’s no way I can even dare to go your path.  I don’t even have the capacity to do everything you do; you are such a lady”.  This was my moment to define my ‘purpose’ and awaken her soul so I seized the opportunity.   “I do only one thing”, I stated.  With a bizarre look on her face she said, “you are kidding, right”?.   I leaned in gently and with a smile on my face I said; “This is the one thing I do.  ‘I am a servant leader who influences people to identify/nurture their strengths and overcome their fears and in doing so, they come to their own truth and are empowered to live a life of purpose and impact”. 

Her reaction was a real “Kodak” moment.  Oh, how I wished I could capture it on camera!  She gave me the most confident look she has ever worn since I met her and with a sigh of relief she said; “how do you do what you just profoundly stated”?“This goal is accomplished through coaching, speaking, teaching, leadership training, consulting, mentoring, writing and ‘walking the talk’”, I replied.  What came next was totally unexpected for me.  With tears rolling down her cheeks she said; “I completely agree with you.  Now I understand why I was so drawn to you and why every time I leave our session, I tell myself I have to return for more”.  I knew that one day, I will come to ‘my own truth’ and find my way out of my dark world”.    

My personal ‘take-aways’ from this experience cannot be numbered however; I would rather give you the opportunity to find the morale for you.  I was deeply touched and reminded of an insightful statement I once heard; “The return on your investment should not only be measured by the wealth you build but by the lives you change in your journey”.

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