Now that's done with, I'll move on with this post's topic - the final instalment of my super-loooong running series on the '10 Keys to Happier Living' (for more info on this, check out my previous post here, or this cool Youtube vid).
*Deep breath* - so here goes...
Taking it back to psychological research, those who have meaning and purpose in their lives are most definitely happier, and exerience less stress and depression. As outlined in a study in the Journal of Positive Psychology about 'Purpose, Hope, and Life Satisfaction', 'having identified a purpose in life was associated with greater life satisfaction at [various] stages of life'.
While we each have a unique purpose to our lives, some key aspects can include having a religious faith (and thus having a broader view of our purpose in life), being a parent, or working to help others and make a difference in the world.
So, how do we find deeper meaning and purpose in our lives? Here's some tips from an excellent article in The Chicago Tribune (plus one of my own):
1. Reflection - each night, think about what activities during your day you found to be 'life-giving'.
2. Meditation - this can be as simple as finding a quiet place to reflect, and unplugging from the ever-present technology that surrounds us.
3. Journaling - writing about experiences you find both positive and negative in your life can help you to maximise the former (and minimise the latter).
4. Prayer - research shows that prayer (in whichever way is meaningful for you) can help you to remain more clear-headed and have less anxiety.
5. Outward focus - ultimately, purpose and happiness is all about relationships and helping others. Help someone else, and you just might find what you were put here on this earth to do.
Over to you:
- What helps you find meaning and purpose in your life?
- Have you found your purpose yet?
I'd love to hear your thoughts over on my Facebook page, or in the comments section below. :)