What Gives Your Life Meaning?

The name of my coaching practice is “TRANSCENDENCE: Living a Life of Meaning”, but what does that MEAN? I’ve previously written about Transcendence, and I will write more about that in the future, but today, I want to tackle the second part: Living a Life of Meaning.

First, it doesn’t mean that my clients and future clients don’t have meaning in their lives now. We all have meaning in our lives, Of course, we do. Our lives are shaped by meaningful relationships: parents, spouses, children, and friends. Our lives can also gain meaning through charitable work or our jobs and careers.

It’s something that people talk about a lot today. They want to have more meaning in their work. It’s one of the reasons people have given for quitting their corporate jobs during the Great Resignation . . . and I confess, it was part of the reason that I quit MY corporate job.

But what does “meaning” really entail?

The word “meaning”, according to Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary, has several definitions, but the pertinent one is #3: significant quality.

Significant quality. Not just quality (as in superior caliber), but significant quality, the kind of quality that has influence or effect. (Also from Merriam-Webster.)

Influence. In other words, making a difference.

Living a Life of Meaning is living a life that makes a difference.

But, wait! We all make a difference. We make a difference to those around us every day. We all live lives of meaning!

And that’s the point. We do. You are already living a life of meaning. You don’t have to upset your career, your family, and your world to get there.

But what if that’s not enough for you? What if you want to make a difference on a bigger scale? Or in a more impactful way? Or contribute more to your organization? Or to a problem in the world that you are passionate about?

What if you want to live of life of GREAT meaning, of DEEPER meaning?

I know I am living a life of meaning. I was living one when I was in the corporate world. But I wanted to live a life of deeper meaning, to have great influence, and to share myself and my passion in a different way. That’s why I wrote my novel, contributed to anthologies, and started my coaching practice.

Because I want to live a life of deeper meaning, and I want to help other people do that too.

It’s not that you don’t have meaning in your life. You do. But do you have enough? Do you have the right meaning? The right quality? Or is something still missing?

What gives your life meaning?

Here are five ways to start (or continue) your journey there:

  1. Faith – Get in touch with your faith, your beliefs about the unknown realm. How does that influence your idea of meaning?
  2. Connection – Connect to your faith, listen to your inner wisdom. What is your soul telling you about meaning?
  3. Appreciate – Look around you. Look at the people you interact with every day, the people you love, you work with, and you smile at in the grocery store. And appreciate that you are influencing them. How can you enhance that?
  4. Passion – What do you care about most? What’s important to you? What’s significant? How much time do you make for that? How much meaning does it provide?
  5. Self-compassion – How are you making a difference to yourself? 
    1. Are you taking care of yourself or burning yourself out? Are you judging yourself for not having more meaning in your life? Are you comparing yourself to others? Stop. Go. Back to #3. 
    2. Are you making time for your passion (and not just after you’ve already done the thousand other things on your “to-do” list)? Take a deep breath. Don’t judge. Allow yourself to recognize all the things that have gotten in your way until now. Be gentle. Then, decide. Does this passion need more time? Or not?

Creating a life of deep meaning, of great meaning doesn’t happen overnight. It takes conscious attention, boundaries, and commitment.

But it’s worth it.

Yes, you are already living a life of meaning … but is it enough?

1 Comment

  1. Paulien Meijer

    I loved how you broke down the ways to deeper meaning in 5 steps. A great way to start each morning, going down the list!


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