In The War of Art, author Steven Pressfield recounts a speech by the late Tom Laughlin, former film star and Jungian psychologist who self-specialized in working with those who had been diagnosed with cancer.
Paraphrasing the speech, he says: “The moment a person learns he’s got terminal cancer, a profound shift takes place in his psyche. At one stroke in the doctor’s office he becomes aware of what really matters to him. Things that sixty seconds earlier had seemed all important suddenly appear meaningless, while people and concerns that he had till then dismissed at once take on supreme importance.”
Laughlin found, curiously, that for many of those who would find their true calling as a result of this supreme wake-up call, their cancer would go into remission.
The idea, as Pressfield expounds upon in his own words, may be that there is a direct connection between turning away from pursuing that thing which we were called upon to do and our very health. That it’s not just our mental health that suffers when we hide our gifts and talents and run from our heart but our whole being.
If you’re alive, there’s a purpose for your life.
– Rick Warren
Whether or not there is any sort of connection here or not can be argued forever. However, what is true is that once you’ve found your purpose, some weird and very curious things occur.
But, given the way we’ve been conditioned to live our life — conforming to society’s standards of normacy and material success — it can be hard to know if you’ve truly found your life purpose or not.
If you believe you just might have finally found what you were called here to do, but still aren’t quite sure what that even means or what it’s supposed to look like, here are three weird but powerful signs you’ve found your life purpose.
1. You’re calm and collected even when the world is burning down around you
For some, finding one’s life purpose is like uncovering a lost key to our true self. Our personality quite literally changes, often from that of a wound-up stress ball to a very calm, and very cool, clam.
This change is sometimes gradual and sometimes sudden. However, I’ve seen more than my share of shifts in personality from those who have finally found that thing which lights up their heart to know there is undeniably a connection.
Daily life can wreak a lot of havoc on us. But, sometimes, finding one’s purpose can be the ultimate cure. It’s like feeling as if you were constantly nose diving at 30,000 feet only to finally feel like you’ve leveled out– and now you’re flying high, in perfect control of your surroundings.
This strikes straight through to the heart of what causes us to feel so stressed in the first place. We’re always, internally at least, blaming the outside world for our problems when really it’s our internal turmoil that the height of our stress originates from.
Sure, daily life causes us stress that isn’t our fault. However, much of it wouldn’t affect us the same way if we were to uncover the source of the aggravation. And that is, curiously, something that finding your purpose can do.
2. Money begins to flow more freely
Purpose, your calling, is never about money. As it should be.
However, our lack of it is sometimes attributed to a kind of mental block that keeps us from either:
- Allowing ourselves to become successful because of some presupposition about ourselves or what money does to people, or
- Pushing through resistance to do the things necessary to realize monetary success.
These hidden forces are very difficult to overcome intentionally because they’re hard to spot on our own. But when you uncover your purpose it has a will of its own and a power that is very much alive.
If money has finally, miraculously, begun to flow more freely in your life, even if it’s a small difference for now, that’s a sign you’ve found your life purpose and finally begun to push past that resistance that’s been holding you back.
3. Your health improves
There’s no way of knowing for certain if something so incredible as curing cancer is possible by simply realizing and finally pursuing your true calling. However, far from potentially curing cancer, one’s health improving is a common consequence of finding one’s purpose.
My own health has clearly improved since realizing my true calling. I do believe in what you could call mystical possibilities and miracles, however, I believe this is actually quite straightforward.
Most people make the mistake of underestimating how closely tied the mind and the body are. In literally every way, you can draw a direct line from the mind to the body even when it comes to things like emotions, as in the case of the physical body having an effect over the mind (the gut), and breaking past our known physical limits, as in the case of the mind affecting the physical body (most clearly witnessed in our fight or flight response, but not excluded to it).
When you find your life purpose, your every sinapse lights up. You feel more energetic, stronger, and more able to face and fight through illness and stress. Your health can literally improve by finding your life purpose.
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