What is your purpose? I challenge people to really think about that question. Not discuss it with others or bounce ideas of one another, but really think about the things they are doing in life, their beliefs, the relationships they have, their emotional connections and how they all align. Do they align with what you believe is intrinsic to making your life one of fulfillment? Then you look at the question, what is fulfillment? Is being fulfilled having a safety net or is it following your heart without knowing the direction it is taking? Either choice is a good one, if it is the right choice for you.
I’ve written this blog post at least 20 times in my head over the past several months, written it on paper at least a dozen (okay technically on a computer), deleted it every time because I honestly didn’t know what to write. I’m not really the cheesy type of person unless I’m eating loads of cheese (joke) or I’m being intentionally cheesy, so to actually write something (dare I say it…..) serious (well moderately serious because I can’t take that word serious seriously), was funny to me (funny, being the opposite of serious). But here I am, at 7:11pm, which is funny because it’s Slurpee time (see seriously not serious), writing a post and laughing thinking what the heck am I doing actually writing about a serious topic (queue hands up over my face as I sit in the dark typing because the dark sets the mood, right? Kidding).
What is your purpose? I remember a lot of exact moments in my life. I remember the exact moment I intentionally lied for the first time, coincidentally in first grade about some shiny fish tank rocks that mysteriously came home with me. I remember the exact moment I promised myself something and broke it by eating yet another box of Peanut Butter Crunch. I remember the exact moment I told someone other than my family I loved them. I remember the exact moment I knew my heart would be broken and knew in my gut it would take years for me to piece back together. I remember the exact moment I realized for real real that my family meant everything to me and that the connection with my mom, dad and sister was more than what words could convey. I remember the exact moment I cried because I didn’t believe I had anything left to offer the world and felt so alone sitting on the floor in the corner of the kitchen. I remember the exact moment I cried, sitting with my toes in the sand, and was truly happy with me for the first time in my life. I remember the exact moment I was going to get my first speeding ticket. I remember the exact moment I knew I was going to make it swimming the English Channel. I remember the exact moment I had no clue what I was doing with my life. I remember the exact moment I knew what my purpose was in life.
What is your purpose? I challenge people to really think about that question. This is the post where the “…. And some things not” about my “.… all swimming and some things not” blog comes into play, but then again not really. You see swimming changed my life. Swimming is not my purpose, it is not my job. Swimming is my passion and while I am passionate about it with every fiber in my body, everything esoteric about the swimming experience opened my mind to begin to think about my purpose. I remember the exact moment I knew what my purpose was in life. It Monday, to days ago, when someone asked me, when they challenged me to really think about that question. Not to discuss it with others or bounce ideas of one another, but really think about the things I am doing in life, my beliefs, the relationships I have, my emotional connections and how they align. My purpose is to give, help others and be happy.
Pretty vague, I get it, but it’s a starting point for the beginning of the rest of my life and the starting point for making a change. If we’re not challenged, we don’t change. Swimming challenges me, swimming has changed me and I’m in such a good and happy place right now, I want this, what I have experienced as a result of swimming, for other people. Maybe my purpose changes in the future depending on where my education, personal growth, passion and abilities take me at that point in my life, but it’s a true comfort and sense of inner peace (vocabulary lesson courtesy of the West coast, kidding by the way, love my nature loving West coasters who I have become one of) that I can’t describe or put into words.
What is your purpose? It’s also really frightening at the same time to know your purpose because when you figure it out the pressure really is on you to begin to make changes to the aspects of your life that aren’t aligned. I’m fortunate enough to know what those are for me, to have the knowledge, abilities, tools and resources to begin to make the changes I need and want to. I’m happy, I’m in a good place, and I’m also a little scared because I don’t know where these changes will lead. I’ve been vulnerable to friends for the first time this year, I’ve made some big mistakes, and I’ve fallen down, a lot. I’ve also accomplished things extraordinary that a lot of people didn’t think I could, but it’s because I put a plan in place to learn about balance and inner strength. All of these challenges lead me to my purpose, they were the catalyst of change that is to define the rest of my life.
Where do I go from here? Who knows, maybe to 7-11 for a Slurpee, maybe to go jump in the lake, maybe to go find Rufus, Orton, Molly, Liv or Bernie (my seal friends), maybe to plan the next swim adventure of a lifetime, maybe to call my family or a friend to tell them I love them, maybe (and the most likely) to boil a pot of emergency macaroni and then go to bed after having the discussion with myself to floss or not to floss (which of course I will floss because my sister would never speak to me again if I didn’t). Either way, it doesn’t matter because I can begin anywhere. I can do anything I want because after years of self-improvement, self-realization and education that was brought on because of swimming, I have a starting point for the rest of my life. I’m most excited to find out where this will take me in my career with my company, where it will take me with swimming, and where it will take me in my personal relationships and connections with others.
Most excitingly, I’m excited to hear from all of you on what you think about after you think about where your life is taking you. Where are you with your self-awareness of body, mind, relationships and balance? If you don’t know where you are or where to start, asking yourself a single question is a great place to begin. What do you need to let go of to gain what you want? I remember the exact moment I was asked this question and it was the day I fully committed to putting self-improvement first, that I committed to swimming as a lifelong passion, which began my journey to find my purpose. All I ask is that you take some time to think and since I don’t know what to say to end this blog post, I’ll just post a picture of the sunset of the North end of the lake hoping that the scene of the orange waves in the sky prompts you to think or go get a scoop or orange sherbet… there you go, a serious, not serious post.