How to Find Your Direction in Life

There’s no doubt that having a direction in life increases your chances of success and satisfaction in life. I already shared an exercise about how to find your north star by writing your own obituary. It boils down to answering the following question.

“What kind of a life would you like to have lived at the end of your life?”

Today’s exercise is not an alternative to the obituary exercise, but it is complementary. Today, we will go deeper than the obituary exercise. We will cut through the noise of our superficial mind and find the needs and desires of our deep mind. Today’s exercise starts with brainstorming and then it goes into deep reflection mode.

“What would you create in your life, if you had infinite power?”

Ask the question above to yourself and write down your answers. Every time you come up with an answer, answer the following question.

“Then what?”

This is a great follow-up question, because it cuts through the noise of your superficial mind.

Suppose that someone gives the following answers to the questions above.

  • “I want to win the lottery.”
    • Then what?
  • “I will quit my job.”
    • Then what?
  • “I will move to a bigger home.”
    • Then what?
  • “I will travel the world.”
    • Then what?

Discover Your Deepest Desires

If you keep questioning, you will hit a point where you will discover your deepest desires. In the example above, the person might discover that their deepest desires are financial security and adventure. All the other wants were just superficial expressions of their core desires.

“Your superficial wants are just some shallow expressions of your core desires. Once you get that, you can create conscious goals that relate better to your core desires and reality.”

Once the person above becomes aware of their core desires, they can work directly on them instead of dreaming of a windfall. They could work on more realistic strategies to achieve financial security. Moreover, they can include some adventure in their life in a conscious way.

“Can you see how this way of reasoning is more satisfactory compared to dreaming about some unrealistic desires but doing nothing about them?”

I strongly recommend that you do the obituary exercise combined with the technique explained in this post. Once you have determined your core desires, come up with a few life goals that would satisfy those core desires. To keep things simple for your Goliath, don’t exceed ten life goals.

Validate Your Life Goals

If you are not 100% sure about your life goals, you can ask yourself the following questions to validate them.

  • How am I going to feel about these choices at the end of my life?
  • Will I miss anything?
  • Will I have any regrets?

The goal is to come to a point where you have 100% satisfactory answers to these questions. Once you have finished this exercise, write it on a sheet of paper and read it every day, as the first thing in the morning to calibrate your mind towards the accomplishment of your deepest desires.

What’s Next?

Today’s exercise, combined with the obituary exercise was about finding your direction your life. In tomorrow’s exercise, we are going to work on how to make progress towards the accomplishment of your life goals.

Burak Bilgin
Software developer with a Ph.D. and 15 years of experience. I write daily on personal development and life lessons. Sign up to my email newsletter to receive a weekly overview of my latest content on personal development and life lessons.

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