Many of us are so busy wearing masks so we can play roles for others that we have lost touch with who we are and our purpose. Society tells us to sit down, follow the rules, and graciously accept the toys for which we spend our lives working. We are left to figure out how to quiet the inner aching that keeps us awake during empty, endless nights.
We do not dare follow our dreams. The confusion and uncertainty of following an aspiration without knowing or seeing the bigger picture are daunting. Undoubtedly, if there is no path outlining a course to safety and financial security, then it cannot be ours for the taking. It will remain a dream, a regret we pick up like a heavy rock from our death bed, if only I had considered walking that path, even once in my lifetime.
My journey took many years and a lot of un-doing. That is how, at the age of 32, I found myself in Asia, following my dream. It was a “now-or-never” moment. I realized that I needed to align my life with my work, my talents with my career, my purpose with my entrepreneurial drive.
What is Purpose?
Purpose is not as elusive as we have been led to believe. Quite simply, we are all here for a reason. We came into this life to reach another level, to do more with what we have been given, with our talents, gifts, and brilliance. Purpose can be a simple as leading a healthy life (not so easy today) or having a happy family, but for many, there is an urge that they were made for more.
Living in a material-based world, we rub up against realities; financial, health, family. While these can be obstacles, they are often the very keys to unlocking purpose.
It is not a mistake that you are sitting where you are sitting right at this moment, doing what you are doing for work, in the relationships you are in, living in the city you find yourself, so on and so forth. You have consciously or unconsciously designed your life to be what it is. And it is serving you as an awake person, tuned in with your inner guide, or your higher self is doing its very best to guide you to where you need to be.
The question is – are you ready to listen to your higher self? Do you care? Do you want to remain asleep to your truth (which is cool, no harm, just a different choice), or are you craving more out of this one life?
“This is the only dance there is,” ~ Ram Dass
It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to understand that purposeful entrepreneurship occurs when your work aligns with your life’s purpose. This can manifest in so many ways and doesn’t mean giving up your day job to pursue your dreams.
Steps to Begin Unlocking Purposeful Entrepreneurship
- Determine you are in control of your life’s design. If one or more of these things ring true than it might be time for a conscious redesign of your life.
- Are you happy with your life – truly happy?
- Did you consciously choose what you are doing with your life/career/etc.? This can be a complicated question, especially if you are not aware, you are still unconscious. I’m happy to assist.
- Do you ever get the sense that your life or career are running away with you, or that you are on a runaway train that you can’t seem to get off?
- Are you living for everyone else (your spouse, your children, your family), except you?
- What is your purpose? If you’re not aware of what it is (you might have several), it’s time to get in touch.
- What is something you have always been extremely good at? A gift or talent you have but shoved aside because society or family told you it was a “nonsense” career?
- Is there an activity you love doing (because you have a knack for it) like thrift shopping or making gourmet cappuccinos, but you have never considered a purpose because that would be absurd?
- Write down all of your talents. Yes, all of them. C’mon, even if you have 100 – I dare you. What five things stand out to you on the page? Why do they stand out? Are they talents you are particularly good at, or ones you stopped practicing when you were younger for one reason or another?
- Do you want to make a living from your talents to build a prosperous life? By now, hopefully you have uncovered an innate gift from which others can benefit. You deserve to gain financially from your soon-to-be side hustle, but the question now is whether you want to prosper from your purpose?Ask yourself the following questions:1. Does your day job allow you the time and space you need to explore your purpose? This is a great way to test the waters and figure out if you would enjoy partaking in your passion part-time. If that feels like too much, it’s probably not going to churn the kind of green that will bring about unbound wealth, but it’s worth exploring in your time off.2. If you do have time outside of your paying gig to explore your innate gifts and you love the idea of prospering from them, what about setting them up as a side-hustle to start?
- Cappuccino designers
- Konmarie joy keepers
- Urban gardeners
- Vegan bakers
- Mala makers
You get my point – We live in a most magical world, and whatever you wanna be, you have the potential to create an epic enterprise that aligns with your inner truth. Now, how fuckin’ dope does that sound?
Feeling Lost Doesn’t Mean You Are Purposeless
You have always known what your purpose is. I knew, but I pushed it aside for years. Similar to many of you brilliant, talented leaders who are excel in so many areas of life, I was too often lost. “But I can do anything!” I would lament. Too many choices left me chasing everyone else’s dream, but never my own. Spending my days, weeks, hours, and years building someone else’s business, making millions of dollars for someone else, while my own faded into stardust. My talents wasted, my master’s degree cast into the gutter, a piece of used rubbish that had become a burden when it was not useful to my functions as an employee.
Then I slowed down. I walked through the steps above, which helped me tap into my talents and my truth. I journeyed into my soul and remembered my purpose had always been with me, but I had let society dictate how I would spend my years on this planet. The moment I chose me, life felt easier, began to flow better, and the universe began to conspire with me. I heard from a company in New York, The Culture-ist, that wanted to promote my brand.
The moment I knew, without a doubt, that I was building a purpose-aligned business came when I learned that I was 1 of only 3 people in the world utilizing an extraordinary, ancient spiritual protective piece in modern jewelry design.
I sat beneath the bright, full moon, in the south of Thailand, wondering how it was possible. Before that night, I was feeling lost despite all of the positive support for my brand. Wandering, searching, believing there was a higher purpose in life for me (despite all the evidence to the contrary). I had begun to lose hope. Then, as though answering my calls, the proof of purpose came through, and my being was shaken to the core with alignment, confidence, understanding, belief for the first time.
Connecting With Purpose
I was very sick as a young child with a chronic, rare, seemingly unidentifiable autoimmune disease. While living in the hospital at the age of ten, I taught myself how to make jewelry from a small, plastic box of beads. Day after day, I created pieces of art for nurses and my hospital guests as a healing practice. It soothed my mind, a distraction from the madness of traumatic captivity. Over the years, I tapped into this healing practice when I found myself stuck at home, sick. The entrepreneur inside me was impatient and unsatisfied when I saw jewelry at local boutiques. Regardless of my health, I took to the pavement, cold-calling on stores to sell my jewelry, which led to hosting trunk shows, and selling to boutiques around the country. I was eighteen years old.
With zero business acumen in my early years and by-the-book parents, I was ushered into a proper J-O-B. Stuffing my creative and entrepreneurial dreams and into the closet, along with my Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology. Who are we and what are we in this world without a “proper income” (translate = 9-to-5 office job with a steady paycheck)?
Don’t get me wrong; I wholeheartedly value income and the need for it. We cannot live without it. At the same time, taking the opportunity to build my purposeful business, Zahara + Jade, was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Now it is time to help others do the same.