Avoid Temptations and Wrong Paths Along the Way

We’ve been talking about living with purpose for quite some time. By now you’ve thought quite a bit about what you may want to change or tweak in your own life to live more intentionally and with more purpose. Ideally you will have started to incorporate some of those ideas and are starting to live more purposefully.

Old habits are hard to break and it’s not uncommon to slip back into familiar behavioral patterns that no longer align with your wish to live more intentionally. In addition there will be things and people tempting you to stray off you path as well. You may have the best of intentions to live healthier or example and take better care of your body, but when you walk into the break room at work there’s a big box of doughnuts tempting you. Or maybe you are trying hard to be more patient and understanding with your young children on a day when they are determined to push all your buttons and test the limits of that new patience. It happens. Life is messy and there will always be things that go wrong and people who intentionally or unintentionally try to lead us down the wrong path.

The best way to deal with temptations is to expect them. They are going to show up sooner or later. If they surprise you, you will be more likely to give in. If you know they are coming, you can guard yourself better against them. Learn from each temptation and realize that each one you avoid makes you stronger and more determined to stay your course.

Even with the best intention and our guard up against temptation we can end up heading down the wrong path. Life happens and sometimes things are out of our control. At other times, we may not notice that we’ve chosen a wrong turn until we’re well up that wrong path. It’s ok. It happens. It’s simply time to change course and get back on track. This is why it is importantly to frequently review what we’re doing. This allows us to see what’s happening and if what we’re doing is still aligned with our intentions, our purposes, and our values. Make sure you take this time for reflection and adjust as needed as you go along on this exciting journey of living a purpose driven life.

Aligning Yourself With Your Purpose Through Meditation and Prayer

Living with purpose isn’t always easy. We get busy, we get stressed out, or we simply get distracted. It happens to all of us and when it does, we no longer hear that little voice in our head clearly that tells us what we should be doing. Without a clear purpose and solid intentions to live our life around it, it becomes easy to get off course. We have to find a way to make sure we can get back on track and realign ourselves with the purpose we’ve chosen.

A great way to do this is through prayer and meditation. There’s a reason these techniques have been used for millennia by spiritual leaders and everyday people who successfully live a purpose driven life.  Both prayer and meditation allow you to tune out those distractions and give you clarity of mind. Once your mind quiets, you can start to listen to that inner voice that tells you what’s truly important and what you value most.

It doesn’t matter what religion you belong to, if you consider yourself a spiritual person, or how much faith you have. Prayer and meditation can benefit anyone. One of the easiest forms of meditation is a simple breathing exercise that you can do anytime, anywhere. That being said, I recommend you practice it first in a calm and quiet spot. This will allow you to focus on it and get used to it without too many distractions. Once you’ve practiced for a little while though, you can use it to calm and clear your mind whenever you need it.

A Simple Breathing Meditation

The easiest type of meditation is to simply focus on your breath. Try to tune out everything else and focus on breathing in and breathing out. Notice how the air feels flowing through your noise. Pay attention to how your abdomen rises and falls, expands and contracts. Whenever you get distracted or start to think of something else, keep bringing yourself back to the breath. Start by practicing it for 30 seconds to a minute and expand the time with practice.

Give this a try and see if you find it helpful. From there read up on other meditation techniques. There are lots of great books out there on the topic. There are guided meditations and even mobile apps.

Diffusing While Meditating

Using Young Living essential oils in your diffuser during your prayer time or meditation is helpful for maintaining focus and deepening your spiritual experience. Here are some suggestions:

Sacred Frankincense™ essential oil comes from the distillation of the resin of the Boswellia sacra frankincense tree. This oil is ideal for those who wish to take their spiritual journey and meditation experiences to a higher level.

The Gift™ is a blend of seven ancient oils that have been sought after for centuries for their calming properties. It includes Balsam Canada needle, Sacred frankincense, Jasmine, Northern Lights Black spruce leaf, Myrrh, Vetiver root and Cistus (Rose of Sharon).

If you don’t already have Young Living oils, please click my link on the upper left, and I’ll be happy to help you out.

 

You Realize the World Doesn’t Revolve Around You

Much of what’s going on in today’s world makes us focus on ourselves. We’re supposed to look out for our best interest, compete with others for the best job, the biggest car, and the nicest house. We’re surrounded by advertisements and media messages that encourage us to be very self-centered and egocentric.

When we start to live with purpose, the people around us become more important. Instead of focusing on just us, we focus on our family, our community, and even the world at large. That’s quite a bit of a change in perspective and something that will come over time. The amazing thing is that it starts happening effortlessly.

You start by living more purposefully and end up focusing more on the needs of your loved ones. Maybe it starts with simply paying more attention to your spouse and kids. From there it moves toward your extended family and your circle of friends. Along the way you notice that working with others, helping them out, and doing things for them feels good and brings a lot of joy and happiness. Living a purpose driven life that includes other people who are important to us is a great feeling.

From there it spirals out. As you create more intentional relationships with your kids for example, you get closer to their friends. You also become more empathetic to the needs of other parents and their children. Your focus starts to shift from yourself and your own little family to your local community and eventually the global community we all live in. And that’s a very good thing.

No matter how much it is drilled into us and how much we want to believe it, we don’t live in a bubble. We live in a community and in this day and age that community reaches across the entire globe. Our actions, our purchases, and how we choose to live our lives has an impact on everyone else. We can no longer afford and shouldn’t want to live a self-centered life. Trust me, being part of a community and working together for the better of everyone involved is a much better feeling.

It’s yet another advantage to living your life with purpose. You get to see the world from a different perspective. Not only that, but you’ll also be setting a good example for your children and other people around you. As they see you care about and help others, they will be inspired to do the same. If you ask me that’s pretty powerful stuff. Your own choice to live with purpose can end up affecting hundreds, if not thousands of others and inspire them to do the same.

When You Live A Purpose Driven Life, Your Values are Clear

Today, I want to talk about values. They guide our lives and are like a compass to keep us on the clear and narrow. We learned basic values as young children, and then continue to evolve and adapt them as we grow into adulthood. Along the way things can sometimes get murky. Part of growing up involves questioning the values we’ve grown up with and sometimes, we simply disregard some of the values we’ve grown up with without setting up a clear new system of values to guide us.

The beauty of living a purpose driven life is that as soon as you start paying attention to what you want to accomplish and start to live with purpose, your values become clear. You know without a shadow of a doubt what’s most important to you. You may choose family over a big raise or overtime. You may choose working hard now and saving up over instant gratification. You may choose going out and making friends or exercising (or both at once) over sleeping in on the weekend. You get the idea.

When you live with purpose… no matter how big or small those purposes may be… you live based on values. When you look at it and think about it for a minute, those values will become very clear to you. You’ll learn what’s most important to you. That in turn will help throughout the rest of your life moving forward

Once you are clear about your values and have them defined, it becomes much easier to make daily decisions and choices. With your value compass in place, you only have to ask yourself if what you are doing is aligning with those values. That in turn makes your life a lot easier. You no longer have to agonize or second guess yourself. Instead, you make your decision and are confident that it’s the right one.

Having a moral compass and set of values gives you a lot of confidence. You know, without a shadow of a doubt, that you’re doing the right thing and are moving in the right direction. Between that and the passion and excitement a purpose driven life brings, you’ll feel like you’re on the right path. That takes a lot of stress, worry, and second guessing out of the equation, which is a very good thing.

You find yourself calmly moving through life, making decisions, taking action, and moving along almost effortlessly. I’m sure you’ve noticed people around you who have a strong purpose and values. They stride through life instead of stumbling. That’s the goal and that’s what I want you to get out of this 30 Day Living with Purpose challenge. Start paying attention to your own moral compass of values and let it guide you well on this sometimes complicated, and sometimes treacherous path of living life.

When You Live With Purpose, You Don’t Have Time To Worry

Are you a worrier by nature? Do you spend your time worry about anything and everything that could go wrong? I’ve been there and done that. It’s not the most pleasant or most productive use of your time. When we worry a lot, it tends to paralyze us. We’re too worried about everything we don’t know yet, what’s out of our control and what could go wrong. As a result, we don’t get to the important part of taking action, no matter what the goal or activity was.

When we embrace living with purpose the act of worrying changes dramatically. When you know exactly what you want and have the passion to go after it, everything becomes clear. You know what your first step is and then the next one after that. You get to work and start making progress. You keep going and keep working away to make sure you get done what you’ve set out to do. In the end, you simply don’t have time to worry about all that small stuff and that’s a very good thing.

Most worrying is frankly pointless. It uses up brain space and energy that would be much better spent other places. That doesn’t help you much when you’re busy worrying about anything and everything. What will help you is shifting your focus, your energy, and your passion to something more productive – your purpose.

When you find your purpose and make it an integral part of your life, you’ll simply be too busy to worry. The cure to too much worrying then is taking massive action. Go do something that aligns with your purpose. It doesn’t matter what it is. Start with something small that feels safe. Getting that task under your belt will show you that your worries were unfounded and that you can push through them. It also gives you a sense of accomplishment and that in turn builds confidence.

Confidence is another great weapon against the paralyzing effect of worrying. Confident people don’t worry. With each action you take, you become a little more confident and a little less worried. Build on each success and keep working on your self-confidence. Keep focusing on why the things you do are important to you and why you embraced a particular purpose. Focusing on how it is helpful to others is another great tool that will help you push through and start taking action. That in turn builds confidence and decreases worries. Before you know it, you too will be too busy to worry because you’re taking action toward living a purpose driven life.