Once you find it, it's a magical thing. New levels of passion, success & fulfilment all stem out of higher levels of purpose in our lives. Equally, without it - without purpose in our lives - our life can often feel like you're wandering through a confusing maze, unsure of the right way to go, or right things to do. So, how do you find it? That's a question my students ask me all the time.
''How do I find my purpose?''
And my answer comes from an early mentor of mine, Brian Tracy. He explained this, something he titled, ‘’The Corridor Principle’’..
Imagine you’re walking down a corridor. And along that corridor, you see many doors left & right. Many possibilities... many rooms (opportunities) that you can step into. A lot of people just walk down the corridor - move along the path of life - without ever really walking into any of the rooms.
They ignore the rooms & just walk straight ahead. Or worse, they do not move at all and stay stuck. What they don’t realise is that these rooms are the opportunities for greater passion & purpose in their lives.
One room might represent arts & crafts. Think Picasso. Van Gogh. Michelangelo. That was their life purpose.
Another room might represent science & innovation. Think Einstein. Nikola Tesla. Bill Gates. Ada Lovelace. Charles Darwin.
Another room representing... finance. Another... basketball. Another... music.
There are so many different ‘’purposes’’ and things we can go out and pursue in our lives, however the key is to find what we are passionate about and what gives us purpose in our lives. What might make one person wake up super excited every morning, might make another want to stab themselves in the eye with a fork. We must figure out what works for us.
So, you’re walking down this corridor of life. Your goal is to test. Figure out what works for you. You walk up to the first door. And walk through into the first room. Metaphorically, you start something new. A new business. A new hobby. A new area of study. And maybe this becomes something that you completely fall in love with and want to do for the rest of your life, ‘’your purpose’’..
Like Warren Buffett and investing. Roger Federer and tennis. George Lucas and making movies.
However, often, the first thing you test will NOT be the thing that you want to do for the rest of your life. So, what do you do?
You walk out of that room. Close that door. Then, you keep walking down the corridor. And instead of whining & complaining that the first opportunity - the first door - didn't work out, you let that go, and move onto something new.
You walk into the next door. A new possibility. A new event. Something new. Maybe this is your thing. Maybe it’s not. Either way, you're testing. You're figuring it out. And that right there is the key. So, what do you do?
Again, you walk out, keep walking down the corridor & enter the next door. And you keep testing new doors - new opportunity, areas of study, passions, hobbies, etc - until you finally land on the one that you become near-obsessed with. Something that you love so deeply. That doesn't feel like work. That feels like play. Something that when you do, time feels to fly by.
That thing. Your passion.
Test what works for you. Walk down the corridor & be willing to open many doors until you find the room that you want to stay in. Once you find ''your room'' (your passion), you stay in that room and do that. Because you love ''that'' so much. The principle symbolises the journey of life each one of us goes on during our lifetime. Until you find the door that is right for you, you keep opening more doors.
Allowing yourself to experience more.. Doing more will rapidly speed up you finding your passion. Being open to more opportunities. And you go through many different activities until you find something that you can't see yourself ever NOT doing. Something that you are so damn passionate about. Something you think about all the time. That you love. That drives you. That inspires you. Equally, don’t fall into the trap that many people fall into..
The trap of ''getting stuck''..
Many people go to university to study a particular topic, quickly realise this isn't what they want to spend their life doing, but they stay stuck justifying that 'I've already spent so many hours on this' or 'I can't quit now..' And they spend the next 10, 20, 30 years miserable... doing something that they have no passion for.
Remember, there are always other options… other doors to step into.
Any moment you can decide to leave the room you have unconsciously trapped yourself in & enter a new door. The right door for you.