“Find your purpose” seems to be one of the most common themes in self-help today. But how do we actually do that? I asked several life coaches for their top tips, strategies and advice. Here’s what they said.

When you’ve finished reading through them, I’d love to hear some of your ideas on the topic over on Twitter, Facebook, or you can reply to any one of my emails.

1. “For some reason, our purpose seems like this elusive, unknown thing that you are trying to get to. But rather try looking in a different direction. Actually, you have been living your purpose on and off all of your life. Look for the clues! Think back. Even as far as childhood. What were the things that really made your heart zing, your head flutter, made time pass and got you excited? What exactly were you doing? And what was it about the activity that you loved in particular? Can you see a pattern?”

– Vilien-Miri Coetzee

2. “We stress ourselves about finding this one thing that we should be doing, maybe even wanting to find a title. But finding your purpose has nothing to do with doing a job. What if you are what you are? Let’s imagine you are already complete. You are worth everything. Breathe that in, become that idea! Who would you be? What would you think? What would you feel? And then, what would you do? This is something you might feel hesitant towards. That’s usually one of the best signs for growth.

– Jan Broders

3. “Ground your work in what draws you and what feels good to you and then follow that path relentlesslyIf your work is something that you desire to do to feel fulfilled and creatively expressed, you will do it every day with love and gusto!”

– Lee Ann Mallett

4. “My favorite tool to find your purpose is the Freedom Compass. It’s a compass with three needles: Your Ideal Life Vision, Core Strengths and Core Values. Once you get crystal clear on what these are, making decisions in life becomes a breeze.”

– Jenny Rieger

5. “Clarity comes from action, from exploration, rarely from wondering and driving ourselves mad striving to find something that will be true to us forever. Explore the area of your life that brings you joy without the pressure of it having to be your purpose. Live in integrity with your values, in alignment with what is important for you, in love, joy & fulfillment and your purpose will surface as you do. Live fully and notice the patterns of what attracts you and what attracts others to you and let that inform what you explore next. Life is an enjoyable journey; don’t miss that while looking for the map! Trust that what needs to be in your life will be in your life and go where it excites you!”

Teofana Grecea

6. “Try everything that interests you: art, writing, science, plumbing – anything. Don’t be afraid to apprentice with someone who’s ahead of you. Ask: “What breaks my heart?” Listen to your life. Go back to your childhood loves. Did you tinker with mechanics as a kid, doodle your little heart out, clothe yourself in wild ensembles or dress wounds on your dolls? And lastly, ask God to reveal your purpose. He made you for a reason and He won’t keep that hidden.”

Brianna Lamberson

7. “These 2 questions really got me clear: 1) What has been the most painful experience of your life that you have overcome? And if you haven’t yet overcome that experience, doing the work to overcome it may reveal your purpose! 2) What would bring you to happy tears if you could help someone with this? For me, my journey has been 20+ years of pain and suffering, working with therapists, nutritionists, coaches, looking for answers and I finally found the them. My biggest struggle became my greatest strength and gift to the world.

Rich Hilton

8. “Finding your purpose is about finding yourself; who you really are, not who you think or keep telling yourself you are in order to survive each day. Take time, don’t rush, get out and spend time connecting to nature, spend some time in stillness, so that you can hear your inner voice with clarity, without all the distractions you currently have going on around you. This is not a process about thinking, it is about feeling from your heart. To find your purpose you need to take time and step back from what you are doing today.”

Paul Barker


I’d love to hear your thoughts. You can send me a tweet with your biggest takeaways to @bryanteare. Alternatively, hit reply on the email newsletter.

Thanks to all the coaches who contributed to this post.


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