Find your purpose in 5 steps

Find purpose

Purpose. A word you often hear these days. Companies, but also individuals have a purpose. In both cases it means the same: a higher goal why you exist.

But what is your purpose? How do you find out and what can you do with it?

It asks for a bit of self-reflection to figure out what is important for you in life.

With the help of these 5 questions, you can find your purpose.

Find purpose

1. What makes you happy?

Things you really like, now or in the past. For example, think about what you enjoyed doing most when you were little. Or think in extremes, like what you would do if you only had one year more to live.

Get in action

2. When do you take action?

Think about things people can always ask you for. It doesn’t matter if you are doing something else or even if you are sleeping, this is very important to you and you would want others approach you for it. So important, that you’d even want to fight for it.


3. What do others see in you?

Something that makes you unique. Something that people who are very important to you appreciate in you. Something that has led to opportunities in the past, opportunities that you otherwise would probably not have gotten.


4. When do you forget everything around you?

Something that you find so interesting that you don’t even notice what is happening around you. When you are doing it, you forget to eat or postpone a toilet visit until you réally have to go.


5. What can you learn from your past?

Those moments when you felt on top of everything, or when it went extremely bad with you and you felt down. What do these say about your strengths, what made the difference that led to those situations, what did it bring you that you find important and would like to pursue, or avoid.

Look back at all your answers and write down key words/elements that you see as a common thread regarding your life mission. Then try to make a sentence out of it. A sentence that summarizes where it all comes down to for you. Something that describes who you are as a person, what drives you. When you see it, you’ll fully identify with it. If you share it with the people around you, they will also recognize you in it and understand you better. Because that’s who you are and how you already act, whether it’s business or private. This is what makes you different.

What can you do with a purpose?

It is not something that makes you a completely new or different person. It is a new valuable insight. A summary about yourself that makes you very aware of the things that make a difference for you and make you happy. And thát, is especially useful if you want more of it. It can give you direction and help you make more conscious choices that contribute to your purpose. For example, if you are in a situation where you cannot fulfill your purpose, you will feel empty and unhappy. So, you can make your own life a lot more interesting by seeking out things that help you live your purpose. Knowing your own purpose therefore helps you to be more authentic, in life and in your work. Ensure that you act from your strength and live the way you want.

Leading from purpose

I found my purpose myself with the guidance of Nick Craig from the Core Leadership Institute, after which I also helped others find their purpose. I can heartily recommend their program. You can find upcoming programs here.

For me, the strength behind their program lies in the structure you go through, to find your purpose and live your purpose, but also in feedback from others. They see the sparkle in your eyes when you say something and can help you to see it clearer and bring it back to 1 catchy personal sentence that encompasses it all for you.

“People who have discovered and lead from their purpose experience a significant increase in their level of clarity of focus and confidence to act.”

Nick Craig – Author, Leading from Purpose: Confidence and The Clarity to Act When It Matters Most. President & Founder, The Core Leadership Institute

For me personally, my purpose has brought me a lot. You can find my purpose at the bottom of this page. It helped me make more conscious choices about how I want to grow in my role as ‘Lioness’. What kind of activities I want to do more, such as helping others to also live their purpose, and what kind of things I turn down.

Do you want a job that allows you to live your purpose?

Once you know your purpose, you can try to job craft towards it. Meaning that you seek out certain activities or turn down others in order to be able to work more from your purpose. But sometimes a job just doesn’t match with who you are or what you need. Have you come to the conclusion that your current job can’t provide you to live your purpose? Then I can help you find a new suitable challenge and make sure you get it!

Purpose Ellen Van Acker

The lioness that roars and leads you off the reservation

That is my purpose and how I stand in life.

Just like a lioness, I’m always part of a team. I don’t necessarily have to be in front of the troops, but I take the lead if necessary. I care for those I feel responsible for and will fight for their needs. I like to look beyond what is accepted. That way I lead towards innovation and new insights, for myself and my environment.

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