Life is difficult and challenging and there will always be times where it will put you up against the wall, in tough situations. From a young age we are learning lessons of life’s realities. On the flip side life is very beautiful, fun, loving and a wonderful experience. Life difficulties impact our mental state the most, how we handle these situations molds our brains to future decisions and actions. Humans are very interesting creatures, we like social interactions, we build emotional bonds, we create habits for almost everything, we live off of past experiences and emotions and much more. There is one thing that I have found the human brain searches and strives for…. PURPOSE.
The webster dictionary defines purpose as the reason something is done, the feeling of being determined to do something or achieve something, the aim or goal of a person. Purpose is what drives human beings to act and to do what they do. Without purpose what is there to do, what is the meaning of life, what is there to look forward to? People need purpose in their lives, people need something to strive for and be about. We see it often in society where people lose the will to live, they wither away and have no meaning in life, their emotions dwindle, they have no care for the world around them. It is sad to see that happen to people, and it happens daily. Life’s difficulties put this to the test over and over again.
There will always be times in your life where you are going to feel no purpose, those are among the darkest times you will experience, but setting your intention during those times will help push through. Now I cannot speak for anyone else, each individual reading this has their own experiences in life, their own troubles, struggles, tough periods of time. But what I can tell you is that without direction you get lost, and at times its okay to feel a bit lost and be lost. But as people we have to look at the big picture, the reason why I am standing on this earth? Why am I here? What purpose do I serve?
Having purpose gives the brain motivation, it gives it a goal to obtain and look forward to, this in turn releases neurotransmitters that affect how we feel and can turn our perception of things into something positive. It also helps our health, those who are optimistic in times of pain and struggle will be stronger when it comes to what they are facing. For example the famous Viktor Frankl stated in his book that once people lose their will to live their time was limited in the concentration camps and their health declines rapidly. There is a strong correlation with mental health and how the body functions if you throw in the towel and quit the body will follow the same path. In the words of Nietzsche “ He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how”, the why to live is your purpose.
Take time throughout each day and reflect back on your life and think about what your purpose was for that time, then look ahead and set up a purpose for the future. We always need to have a purpose going forward. In times of writing this we are in the aftermath of the Covid19 Pandemic of 2020 and things were shut down for a year or more in some cases. The ability to keep purpose in a temporary lifestyle has been an interesting battle for many. Each day being almost similar, limited places to go, working from home everyday, limited socialization, all the things us humans love doing was taken away. Suicide rates went up, domestic abuse went up, divorce went up. These are the realities that can come from negative thoughts, emotions and feelings building up over time. We learn to find different purposes in tough times and still have an overall purpose. While yes, life is full of suffering, it's also not the end of the story. Have purpose each day, set your intention when you wake up and find meaning in the way you live your life.