You are not your job. You are also not your Instagram account, your Facebook account, or the number of followers you have on Twitter. You are not your car, nor your house. You are not your muscles or your fat. You are not your acne nor your perfect skin. You are not your children, nor your friends, nor people you impress at cocktail parties and/or at dive bars. Glad we got that out of the way!
We’ve established what you are not, so let’s dive into who you are — what your purpose in life is. Complete the following exercise either on paper or online in your MyMLC Journal (a free service we offer to help you keep track of your Soul Workout exercises). Answer each question as honestly as you can. Don’t think about what the answer should be. Instead, answer from your heart. Write the answer that intuitively emerges from the still, small voice inside you. You might read What It Means to Be Honest With Yourself — another Soul Workout post — before you start. It will also help to read The Journey Begins by Rabbi Simon Jacobson, which explains the process of discovering your personal mission, based on thousands of years of mystical teachings.
For some of you, the first answer that comes to mind will be the answer from your soul. For others, the questions might require thought, journaling, or meditation. Do what works best for you.
Question One: In three words, describe your personality.
Question Two: List five of your most dominant interests.
Question Three: Describe your character, including your virtues, vices, strengths, and weaknesses.
Question Four: List the past four opportunities that opened doors for you. Who faciliated those opportunities?
Question Five: In the coming year, what opportunities would you like to have open to you?
Question Six: Who are the people who you most often deal with? List the greatest joy(s) and the greatest challenge(s) in dealing with them.
Question Seven: If you have a mentor, describe what you admire about your mentor. If you do not yet have a mentor, describe what qualities you’d like your mentor to have — qualities which you would like to emulate.
Question Eight: List the places where you have lived. What possibilities did each place offer you?
Question Nine: List the places where you have traveled to. You can list just the ones that had a clear effect on you, or all of them. In each place, what changed in you as a result of your visit? What did visiting each place teach you?
The next step is to review your answers with a trusted friend or mentor. What conclusions about your life’s mission can you draw? Where have you been in life, and where do you want to go in life? Your answers to the nine questions above should give you a picture of what you can contribute to the world — what you can contribute to your community, to your friends and family, to your work. Look out for the unique life experiences that have shaped you, as well as what future experiences you would like to have. Your purpose in life will emerge from reviewing your answers.