Finding Your Life Purpose: Katy’s Journey
We’ve gotten lots of feedback at workshops and during private sessions lately that our people are searching for their life purpose. Since I have been fortunate enough to have finally connected with mine, I thought it might be helpful to share my journey.
Once upon a time…
Just kidding, it wasn’t all that long ago, actually, that I found my life’s passion.
The short version is that it was 2006, I was living in Atlanta and hadn’t been feeling fulfilled for a couple years. I had moved house, gotten into yoga, interviewed for a bunch of different jobs, dated a bunch of different people and still hadn’t figured out how to scratch the itch in my soul. Then a position opened up in the Chicago office that seemed ready made for me. It was a promotion, it was closer to my family and two of my best friends were already living in Chicago. It also was well-positioned to put me on the fast track to corporate success, which I thought would help with that unfulfilled feeling. So I went for it and in September of 2007, I was officially a resident of the great city of Chicago. All the bustle of moving and the excitement of getting to know a new place papered over the cracks for a while, but the universe wasn’t about to let me get off track that easily.
I walked into work the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, less than 3 months after I had moved, and was stunned to find out my manager, my V.P. and several members of my division had all been laid off. This trend would continue for the next year, with co-workers being laid off every few months. It was a very scary time. Interestingly, even with all the searching I had done over the previous years, THIS was the event that would bring me closer to my own personal truth.
I observed as these talented people came to terms with unexpectedly losing jobs that they didn’t actually love. I feel comfortable stating that, for most of those people, they were not being forced to walk away from their life purpose. It was more that their safety net was being pulled out from under them and they were ANGRY (understandably). It was that anger that inspired me to stop waiting for a sign from heaven and to really focus on finding my path.
I didn’t want some corporation to be in control of MY destiny! I didn’t want to walk into work one morning to find out that someone else had made a decision that would totally crumble my world.
With that in mind, my research began in earnest. I started analyzing my skills sets, paying attention to what I really enjoyed and to what I didn’t find interesting or necessary. I went to different classes, I interviewed friends in different fields, I went on informational interviews at companies and universities. I did one exercise where I called 15 people and asked them what they thought I should do for a living (try it – the results are fascinating). Finally, after about 9 months of hard core searching and focused self-analysis, I found a tiny ad for a class on “life coaching”. So, why not – it was $25 – let’s go see what this coaching of life is all about.
And that was it. After that first class, I was hooked. I proceeded to sign up for a certification program and to figure out how one became a reputable and effective coach. Five years later, I have my own coaching business, helping people create happier, more satisfying lives.
I can say, from experience, that finding my purpose wasn’t easy, it wasn’t fast and it wasn’t something that just appeared in a dream. I had to clear the clutter from my life, open my heart and get out of my comfort zone. I asked a million questions, of myself and others. I listened, I researched, I meditated, I prayed and I journaled. And when all of that didn’t work, I threw my hands up and left it to the universe, while I went out and had some fun. Then I came back and worked on it some more, until I got to my answer.
Finding my true purpose has made a tremendous difference in my life. Through corporate struggles, romantic disasters, health issues and family crises, it has remained constant and has given me focus. I no longer ask the question “What is my purpose here?”. I know the answer. MY answer. Since part of my purpose is to help you find your answer, I hope that me sharing this story has given you some new insight into your own journey.
How would your life change if you found your life’s purpose?