Photo Cred of the one and only Iris Apfel: One Kings Lane
Want to glide into – and through – your sunset years without the unpleasantries we all assume will come with the aging process? Don’t we all!
What if I told you that a secret to great health benefits not only today, but also down the road has nothing to do with what you eat? It’s true!
Living with a sense of purpose and bringing it into your daily routine results in successful aging!
Here’s the scoop: A research study published in the journal Development Psychology reveals that the benefits of living with a sense of purpose include reduced depression, improved overall mental state, and increases indicators of successful aging. (In this context, successful aging means you are physically healthy and functioning, you’ve got your wits about you (no mental deterioration) and can move around, and you build and maintain social relationships and activities)(Psychology Today).
In short, purposeful living contributes to health and well-being both now and when you’re 80.
I don’t know about you, but I would love to age gracefully and with ease! I’d love to look, act and feel as young as possible for as long as possible with minimal chemical or cosmetic treatments while also living in overall bliss for all of my days. Even better if I can get started now! Sign me up! Wouldn’t you agree?
So, how do we do it?
Defining Your Sense of Purpose
For our discussion, I’ve defined Sense of Purpose below after a Google search left me unsatisfied.
Sense of purpose: the reason for being; the pursuit or expression of which makes you come alive. Innate gifts that you alone can offer to the world, fueled with heartfelt passion.
Ask yourself, your family, your friends, “over my lifetime, when do I seem to be my best self? What am I doing at these times? What activities or pursuits ignites my inner joy and energy? What natural talents do I seem to have that I enjoy pursuing and practicing?”
Make a list. Take time to hone in on what your sense of purpose could look like.
After you’ve gotten clear on your purpose, bring it into your life on a regular basis.
Look at your job responsibilities and duties or where you spend your time socially and in your “off” hours.
Where are there opportunities to infuse your purpose into the seemingly mundane?
For instance, if you are creative, look for ways to create presentations or other communications collateral. Layout or design tips add flair, which differentiate you and your company from competition in the marketplace.
Make the business case to your boss to get involved, or just start volunteering to help.
Can’t find the time during the workday to put your passion at play at the office? Have you tried delegating?
Check out this post for tips to create time and bandwidth. Make the business case for why your unique skills and strategy (aka, applying your sense of purpose) will benefit the team, Client or company. Cite increases to business efficiency, employee satisfaction, team moral or motivation, Client retention, etc. to help bolster your argument…
… or just start doing it! Delegate where appropriate, and get involved.
Fortune favors the bold, and you have unique gifts and talents to bring to the world.
If you can’t get the buy-in at work, volunteer outside of work to put your passion to use for a non-profit, small business or community organization. You may even be able to get paid for it!
In the words of Eminem, “You only get one shot, do not miss your chance… This opportunity comes once in a lifetime.”
This one wild and precious life you lead is The Opportunity for you to express and pursue your sense of purpose!
The health benefits to your body + mind are compelling, and it is your responsibility to share your unique goodness with the world like no one else can!
Small or large, start infusing that sense of purpose into your life. There’s no better time than NOW.
If you have a friend who might be hiding her (or his!) unique brand of goodness, afraid or unsure to let it out, share this post with him or her.
A rising tide lifts all ships, and we love to hear how you bring this conversation to life! Let us know how you’re bringing your sense of purpose to your day-to-day or how you’ve been inspired by someone you know who does it well by leaving a comment below.
As always, wishing you a life of greens and grace, my friends!