Discover your authentic self and reclaim the life of your dreams

I decided to share a bit about what makes the Making Shifts Happen 10 session coaching program special.

It’s easy when life feels very full to get into a routine of simply managing  your many tasks and responsibilities, maybe even with an attitude of doing it just to get done with it.

But I have learnt over the years, through my own experience, and lessons taken from my favourite people on the planet, like Deepak Chopra and Robin Sharma, that the richness of life is in the little moments, so I’m writing this to help you be more present with whatever your engaged in.

You may have seen quotes by Vietnamese Buddhist monk and peace activist, Thich Nhat Hanh. His teaching on washing the dishes is one of the most quoted passages on the topic of mindfulness, and I could listen to it, or read it, and share it a million times:

Thich Naht Hanh teaches: 

“There are two ways to wash the dishes. The first is to wash the dishes in order to have clean dishes and the second is to wash the dishes in order to wash the dishes. . . . If while washing the dishes, we think only of the cup of tea that awaits us, thus hurrying to get the dishes out of the way as if they were a nuisance, then we are not ‘washing the dishes to wash the dishes.’ What’s more, we are not alive during the time we are washing the dishes.”

Thich Nhat Hanh

The consequences of mindlessly washing the dishes may be minimal, but what about the consequences of mindlessly eating, mindlessly doing our job, mindlessly surfing social media, mindlessly playing with our kids, or mindlessly messaging or communicating with our family?

A life without our presence – because we’re just trying to get through it – is devoid of magic moments, connection, and the grace that make it worth living. 
In the MAKING SHIFTS HAPPEN program, a 10-session coaching adventure to discover your authentic self and reclaim the life of your dreams, I would take you on a journey that will show you how to have the life you have always wished you could live.

There are a number of ways to change this outcome-focused orientation. One of the most potent, which I share in Making Shifts Happen, is identifying your life purpose. We do this activity in the first 2 weeks of the program, so that the growth that then comes with the remainder of the coaching ‘treasure hunt’ are sourced from a deep space within, and are more profound and meaningful.

When you have a purpose, you’re conscious that you’re serving a bigger function than meeting your own needs.

When you’re “on purpose,” energy arises to support your work. Opportunities appear everywhere.

And, most importantly, you spend more of your life right here, right now, alive and clear. 

Various methods exist for determining your life purpose, but what it really simply comes down to is that it’s a matter of guessing and/or using your intuition for what you’re meant to do, feel out, and choose to pursue it.

It’s okay if you later decide to modify that choice.

Switch off the world, take a good sip of water or a nice tea, get yourself a pen and paper and write a few sentences in response to these six questions: 
  1. What times and places in your life did you feel you were making a meaningful contribution?
  2. What value do you bring to a community? 
  3. What inspires you? 
  4. What would people say your strengths are? 
  5. When/how do you feel called to serve mankind or the planet? 
  6. What are your highest values (eg. kindness, generosity, honesty, service, integrity, beauty etc.)? 
Based on these responses, craft a statement that expresses how you intend to serve the world. Here are some examples:
  • My purpose is to help people heal through creative expression.
  • My purpose is to build healthy communities. 
  • My purpose is to help people use their voices and awaken their power. 
  • My purpose is to facilitate playfulness in adults.
  • My purpose is to teach people how to live in harmony with the environment. 
  • My purpose is to help people realise their potential. 

Don’t worry about getting the statement perfect on the first round. For now, choose a statement of life purpose and read it out loud and with intention.

How does that feel?

Ideally, making this statement should feel powerful and right, or as I put it, it should feel like a “hell yeah!”It might even give you goosebumps or tingles. If it feels a bit intimidating, that’s ok, too, as long as it also feels true. 

If it doesn’t feel like a “hell yeah!” change some of the wording. Consider making it less specific.

For instance, if a statement such as, “My purpose is to help children to become healthy adults by learning to process their emotions” doesn’t feel as inspiring as you hoped, you could start by broadening it to something like, “My purpose is to help children process their emotions,” or even just, “My purpose is to help children.”

Just get it as accurate as you can manage and then write it down.
  • For my clients now they would use some creativity, writing it in a special way on a nice piece of paper, and add some meaningful symbols or drawings to surround it.
  • Put it somewhere where you’ll see it and say it every morning.
  • More importantly, try to keep it in mind throughout your day, applying it as often as you can.

Track this process.

  • What changes when you’re on purpose?
  • Is it easier to make decisions?
  • Do people respond differently to you?
  • Is there more energy available?
Consciously living your purpose is the only way to know if it’s right.

As you live your purpose, you’ll get insights that will help you refine your purpose statement.

I’d love to hear about your experience with this process if you’d like to share either via the contact form below or in a 1-1 session booked online. 

Meet Susan Dunlop, Women's Coach and Mentor

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