How To Figure Out What To Do With Your Life When You Don’t Know Where To Start

how to figure out what to do with your life when you don't know where to start
What we call chaos is just patterns we haven’t recognized. What we call random is just patterns we can’t decipher.  
Chuck Palahniuk

   

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the past year is that life is always telling you what your life purpose is. You’re just not listening. 

Because it’s unrealistic.

Because it won’t pay the bills.

Because you’re too old for it.

Because you’re not qualified enough, yet.

How do I know? I’ve been there.

Looking back on my life now, all those random jobs and serendipitous coincidences led me to do the work I do today: helping women discover their life purpose and create a soul-aligned business around it.

But for a long time, I just didn’t see it…

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From Lost To Purpose

From as long as I could remember, I wanted to become a teacher. I’d come home from school, put all my dolls in a row, and share with them what I learned that day at school. I’d even create tests for them.

When it came to choose a career, it was a no-brainer. I enrolled into a school that taught psychology, pedagogy, and other soft skills you need as a teacher. But I quickly realised I’d spend more time dealing with bureaucracy than actually teaching students, so I switched gears and decided to do something in the beauty industry, instead.

In Senigallia, a small town on the East coast of Italy, that meant becoming a hairdresser. But I didn’t care about hair as much as I cared about makeup and the passion quickly fizzled out.

Maybe I should channel it into a beauty blog? I’d kill two birds with one stone: share my love for all things beauty with other like-minded women and reconnect with my love of writing. 

Growing up, I always had a pen in my hand. I’d make up stories about what my toys were up to when I wasn’t looking, jot down my thoughts in a journal, and put together a little magazine distributed to my family. But I had set that passion aside, too, not knowing how I could make money from it.

Now I was writing for the sheer pleasure of it. My blog kept me sane as I went to interviews for jobs I didn’t really want. Waitress, sales assistant, cubicle slaves… there really weren’t that many options in my hometown.

By this point, I was feeling totally lost and confused. I knew there was more to life than this, but I had no idea what the heck that was. All I saw in front of me was a bleak future, years of working at a job I didn’t like just so I could keep a roof over my head.

But what about excitement? What about fulfillment? What about my dreams?

I just felt empty inside…

Then, my boyfriend of 13 years dumped me. It was the last straw for me. Now that I didn’t have anything tying me down in Senigallia, I packed all my belongings into a pink carry-on trolley and booked a one-way ticket to London.

Years of blogging had given me the confidence to pursue a serious career in writing. I had received so many comments during the years from readers who said they loved my writing style. And wasn’t writing my biggest passion?

I was sure this was IT.

Once I landed in London, I immediately started to look for clients. I wrote articles for women’s magazines. Ghostwritten for popular blogs. And did copywriting for skincare companies.

Within a couple of years, I was able to support myself with my writing. It was what I had always dreamed of….

…And I hated every second of it. 


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From the outside, I looked like I made it. Inside, I was feeling more empty and lost than ever. If even this passion thing wasn’t working, what hope was there for me?  Were all those self-help books that I had read over the years lying? 

I fell back on the blog. But this time, I treated it like a business. Instead than writing about everything that interested me, I niched down into skincare and started doing consultations. 

I loved working with women and seeing first-hand how their confidence bloomed once their skin cleared up. That was the best feeling in the world for me. And yet… something was missing.

I wanted to help people with more than their skin. I wanted to help them believe in themselves and find the confidence to go after their dreams. But… how?

A couple of years later, I stumbled onto a course for life purpose coaching. I knew in my bones that this was IT.

This was what I was meant to do with my life. The more I thought about it, the more all the pieces of the puzzle fell together.

Looking back, it felt like every step I took has lead me to this realisation.

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Following The Purpose Thread

When you’re busy living your life, caught up in the moment, it’s hard to make sense of it all.

But when you look back, you can often see a defined pattern, a clear theme, a Purpose Thread, that ties everything together.

Looking back at my list, all those jobs had plenty of things in common:

  • Teaching: I had this desire to share what I learned with others from the day I was born. It’s just that, back then, I thought you could only teach math and history, not mindset, business, and life purpose.
  • Writing: I love writing because it gives me a voice. It’s a tool to spread my message far and wide. And I started honing this skill way before I knew I’d need it. 
  • Psychology: Studying psychology at school left me with a deep curiosity to understand what makes people tick and what makes them self-sabotage. This curiosity led me from the masters of modern psychology, like Fred and Jung, to self-help gurus and spiritual teachers, like Tom Bilyeu and Gabrielle Bernstein.
  • Business: I’ve always known I wasn’t meant for the 9-5. Blogging and freelancing was the perfect business education. It taught me vital skills I can now teach to my clients and help them create the business of their dreams.

Put all these things together and you’ve got my current coaching business, The Treasures Within.

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How To Find Your Purpose Thread

As Steve Jobs famously said, “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards.”

So, look back. Here’s a quick exercise to help you:

Take pen and paper and write down a short autobiography. Jot down:

  • Every major milestone in your life
  • Every skill/qualification you have
  • Every random coincidence that happened just at the right time
  • Every job you’ve ever had

Then, look for patterns and themes. What have you been doing, in one way or another, all your life? What skills have you learnt that came useful in the next stage of your life?

As you do this exercise, you’ll see random themes and patterns take place in front of your eyes. It’s kind of freaky. It’s like you’ve been guided to this precise moment all your life by an invisible force. Because you have.

If you can’t see the patterns yet, don’t worry. This is an area where it helps to work with a life coach. It’s easier for a perfect strangers to see the connections that are staring at you right in the face.

If you’d like my help in identifying these patterns, you can book your Discovery Call here. It’s completely free. We’ll just talk about your situation and how I can help you.

Want to do it alone? That’s cool, too. Just as long as you connect the dots. That’s when the magic happens and your purpose becomes crystal clear.

Over to you, now. What are the common themes and patterns in your life and how do they merge together to reveal your life purpose? Let me know in the comments below.

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