• X Questions To Help You Find Your Purpose?


     

    Abstract:
     

    I read a lot of articles and books about purpose. It’s my specialty, after all! And while there is a lot of wisdom and insight in the coaching and mentoring world, some things grate a little.
     

    One of them is the fact that people tend to use “passion” and “purpose” interchangeably. News flash, they’re not the same thing! Another is the many articles promising “X questions that help you find your purpose”.
     

    Your mission today is to learn why this isn’t the way to find your unique life purpose, and what to do instead.
     
     

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    Task 1: Why questions don’t help

     

    First of all, questions are a good thing. Coaching involves asking a lot of questions. However, this happens in the context of a broader process, is always tailored to the individual, and can’t be reproduced in a handy list in an article.
     

    One thing that can be found by questions is passions. Questions can help you jog your memory, make you think and feel towards the things that light you up.
     

    But then, passions are things you do. They’re concrete, and therefore questions are a handy tool for finding them.
     

    help you find your purpose
     

    Task 2: How to find purpose

     

    In a nutshell, purpose can’t be arrived at by asking questions and thinking about it. Jogging your memory won’t help you find your purpose, because it’s not about doing. It’s about being.
     

    Your unique life purpose is the reason why you’re here on this planet. Ideally, your work should be aligned with your purpose, but there’s never just one thing you can do that expresses your purpose in life.
     

    To find yours, I recommend radically prioritising your passion(s). Do a lot of what lights you up, and amplify that joy. This feeling, this vibration is where purpose lives, and over time, it’ll reveal itself to you.
     

    If you’d like a shortcut and support with this process, I’m here to help! It’s what my signature program is designed to do.
     

  • How A Life Can Change In 7 Years

    how a life can change
     

    Seven is a magical number. Someone once told me that seven years is a full cycle in terms of life phases. I don’t if that’s true, but the idea sounds intriguing to me!
     

    Today, I’ll look back 7 years to see exactly how much and in what ways my life has changed through a focus on passion and finding my purpose.
     

    Before I start: I know, I know. Here I am talking about passions and purpose, and you may ask whether getting financial security and organising the practical things in life isn’t more important. To which I say:

    1. These things are all part of building a life of passion and purpose.
    2. At the same time, they’re worth nothing without passion and purpose.

     

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    Flashback to 2014

     

    Holy smokes, I just looked for a picture of myself in 2014. Are you ready?
     

    how a life can change
     

    This is the only picture I could find, and that’s so telling. Here’s what my life was like:

    • I was high-functioning but depressive.
    • I had isolated myself and used junk food as my consolation.
    • Consequently, I was overweight.
    • I worked in a soulless job that required insane hours.
    • I lived in a nice place but one I had no emotional attachment to.
    • No time or energy to focus on my coaching.
    • The only one of my passions I pursued was gaming.*

    `*Honestly, it saved my life. The contact to and friendship with my gamer friends prevented me from becoming a hermit.
     
     

    What did I do to change?

     

    If you’re expecting a weight-loss story, then I’m sorry to disappoint. My story does involve weight loss, but that happened as a side effect, not because of any major focus on it. Instead, I’d like to list what I did to turn my life around.

    • I moved to a place my soul resonates with.
    • Quit the soulless job and got a work-from-home role.
    • Got lots of rest and took long walks.

    When I was healed (only then!), I added:

    • Prioritised pursuing my passions above everything else.
    • Started working on my business.
    • Put the focus of my coaching on passion and purpose.
    • Began to work out again (as part of my passions).
    • Ate delicious food that made me feel alive.

    butterfly
     

    How a life can change

     

    Looking over these lists, I’m in awe. I hardly recognise the woman on the picture above and I’m overcome with gratitude.
     

    I got this close to living out my life in limbo.
     

    So close to working for a living but not having a life.
     

    Where do I even begin to describe the changes in my life? Let’s try and summarise them into categories:
     
     

    Life and happiness

     

    I spent five years working a lovely job from home. It left me plenty of energy to build up my Coaching and my second business, my first love: working with language as a teacher and proofreader. 1 ½ years ago, I quit the job and became full-time self employed.
     

    Both my businesses happen 100% over the internet, so I’m location independent and can spend a few months a year in other places I love. This hasn’t been possible recently because of the pandemic, but it’s still very much on the cards.
     

    I’m rested, relaxed, and happy. Nothing gets me to rush around anymore. I’ve also just moved to a mountain village close to the Croatian coast and the peace here is indescribable. At the same time, I’m still close enough to the city to see my friends regularly.
     

    True, I’m no longer as slim as I got in the first rush of happiness after “waking up” to life. But I’m nowhere near overweight and still a good 17 kg (that’s nearly 3 st) lighter than I was in 2014!
     
     

    Passions and purpose

     

    My passions are front and centre in my life. This forms the foundation of the above – being successful, at peace and relaxed with no time pressure or financial worries. These things are the direct result of my decision to focus on the things that light me up: Music, piano, dancing, archery, literature, making videos, and of course, coaching.
     

    My life purpose became clear only months into focusing on my passions. It had been there all along, but suddenly it jumped out at me and became so obvious, I wondered how I had missed it all these years. Subsequently I shifted my entire life to align with this purpose, and that’s the connection between passions, purpose, and the happiness I described in the previous section.
     

    my new life
     

    How you can change yours

     

    Here’s the good news: It doesn’t take 7 years to accomplish this. in fact, most of the elements of my current happiness were in place 5-6 months after I had started changing my life. I have since repeated the process – in different ways, because every person’s life is a different story – with my clients, over and over.
     

    Basically, it can be broken down to two steps:
     

    The outside circumstances
    This is your job, your media habits, your everyday life, and it’s about simplifying and downsizing. Don’t say you can’t because you have three kids – I promise you, it’s possible, and my clients prove it. If you don’t know how, talk to me and we’ll do it together!
     

    The passion(s) focus
    Prioritising your passion does not mean to start earning money with it. You can do that if you wish, but if your passion is something you just like to fool around with, or in my case, some things you’re not even particularly good at, it should simply be a priority because it gives you joy.
     

    To learn this goes against all our society teaches, and it’s hard. Make no mistake. It’s a process, but it’s the most worthwhile endeavor you could undertake because your life is going to fall into place. At some point, things become easy. And easier. Suddenly, joy and bliss emerge where you least expected them.
     

    Life will be unrecognisable.
     

  • Do You Need A Certain Set-up For Your Passion?


     

    Abstract:
     

    When I asked my client why she wasn’t painting more often – which is her No. 1 passion – she said: “I’m tired after work, and then I need to set up the easel and get my paints from the top cupboard with a step ladder, and it sounds silly, but some days it’s just too much.”
     

    It didn’t sound silly at all. I thought she was making a lot of sense. Your mission today is to make sure you’re set up for pursuing your passion.
     
     

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    Task 1: Caveat – Don’t rely on circumstances

     

    I’ll start out with a disclaimer. Needing a certain set-up to pursue your passion shouldn’t become an excuse not to pursue it. Don’t think that just because you don’t have the perfect set-up one day, for whatever reason, you can’t do what lights you up.
     

    This is about making things easier for you, not establishing a set of conditions. Don’t become too dependent on having the required set-up; that would be counter-productive.
     

    set-up for your passion
     

    Task 2: Create the perfect set-up for your passion

     

    The client I just mentioned ended up creating a painting corner in her home office. It was a space where her easel could just remain standing and behind it was a small chest of drawers with plenty of paper, all her paints and brushes, and everything else she needed.
     

    This is the idea. Whatever your passion is, it’ll probably require a certain set-up to pursue. If you’re a musician, don’t lock away your instrument or sheet music – have them at hand. If you’re pursuing a field of study, keep your books and desk or sofa at eye level and in a comfortable corner.
     

    Creating your own “crafting corner” or “thinking haven” has a powerful effect. You’re literally allowing your passion to take up space in your life. This doesn’t just make it easier to pursue your passion even if you’re tired or not in the mood, it also puts a focus on what lights you up.
     

  • Vlog 7: Holidays In Austria, Love & Loss


     

    Holidays in Austria, Love & Loss

     

    Holidays in Austria! In August, I spent three peaceful days in Bad Aussee and managed to take some gorgeous footage of the Ausseerland with my drone. It helped me come to terms with a recent personal loss.
     

    You better not miss the drone footage of Lake Altaussee!
     

    Also featured in this vlog: Salzburg (and the Salzburg Festival), Vienna, and my new home in Croatia.
     

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    holidays in austria


     

  • Joy Is A Profound Emotion (Not Just Sadness Or Anger)


     

    Abstract:
     

    I remember watching an interview with David Bowie many years ago, where he said that people always equate profound emotion and also deep thought with things like anger or sadness, when really it’s much more subversive nowadays to be happy.
     

    Joy is anything but a superficial emotion, and it’s well worth pursuing. Your mission today is to learn why this is so and how you can go about it.
     
     

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    Task 1: Why joy is a profound emotion

     

    I’ve spoken about our evolutionary negativity bias before, but this goes far beyond that. It’s about the way we have created almost a cult around anything negative today.
     

    News exploit the fact that people are drawn to negativity. Even academics has succumbed to the cult of the sad and angry, to the point where fictional books or movies with a happy ending are seen as shallow on principle.
     

    Historically, strong emotions have always moved artists to create their best works. However, it’s not just sadness or frustration, but also happiness, being in love, finding joy – just think of religious hymns and paintings. Joy is a profound emotion, too.
     
     

    Task 2: The challenges of focusing on joy

     

    As Bowie stated, in our culture it’s akin to a revolutionary act to be happy. You’ll be faced with all sorts of prejudices and obstacles such as:

    • People will assume that you’re superficial
    • People will assume that you’re naive and inexperienced
    • Some will try and take advantage of you
    • “Negativity-splainers” will go out of their way to tell you negative stories to make you more “realistic”

    To stand against the united forces of negativity takes a lot. Stick it out, though; it’s worth it.
     

    joy is a profund emotion
     

    Task 3: How to pursue joy and happiness

     

    Here are three steps you can take to become a happy revolutionary:

    • Stop watching or reading news for a while
    • List 3 things you’re grateful for every day
    • If you’re happy and you know it… acknowledge it. Write it down, tell others.

    Happiness and joy are habits just like everything else. If you work on it regularly, you’ll feel much more joy almost every day.