Escaping The Dark Side Through Purpose – This Will Change Your Life
Sometimes when I look at the reading on the screen of a heart monitor on an EKG machine, I am reminded of the ups and downs that life itself hits us constantly with. Throughout our short existence we are confronted with difficult situations that sometimes seem to appear out of nowhere. In contrast, other times we are surprised by things and events that we would never imagine could actually happen. For example, this past Wednesday a 53-year-old woman won a 758.7 million Power Ball Lottery jackpot, the second biggest in lottery history. I am also sure (although I don’t have specific details) that around the general time that this woman celebrated her incredible win (probably still in shock), there was more than one person around the world receiving very difficult news, not to mention those people that found themselves in situations that completely altered their lives, and, in the worst cases, even ended them.
I don’t mean to put you down, but that is the reality of life. Just like a teeter totter, when you feel down, someone is up, and vice versa. There is never guaranteed stability that allows us to remain in our comfort zone and coast through the years without care. Things evolve and change, opportunities go away, others arrive, dangers loom, safety is threatened. People come and go, friends disappear, true love ends up not being so true after all. Our bubble is constantly getting disrupted and uncertainty is constantly seeping in.
It was exactly that, the uncertainty, that kept me down for many years. There was constant fear inside me, and a disappointment that convinced me that if there was no way to completely control my environment and achieve a predetermined future through my actions, there was no reason to look forward to anything, much less work hard towards something at all. At the end of the day everything could just vanish without warning, and what then? My world became dark and uncared for, I had no purpose in life, no hope. Anything slightly good that would happen in my life got overshadowed by the feeling of impending doom that I constantly carried. My only joy was the alcohol and the drugs that were slowly killing me, and in the process destroying everything around me as well.
Then Death Came and Saved My Life.
I was laying on a hospital bed one night, surrounded by a cluster of medical equipment and beeping noises that seemed to stem from every corner of the room. I had gotten there a few hours later, after a severe pain in my belly convinced me that something was seriously wrong. I had no doubt to believe it, with the way I had been treating my body through the years it was a miracle it hadn’t happen sooner. It was the first time in my life that I felt the brushstroke of death; the sweet caress of the possibility that this could be the end. I was scared, but surprisingly, I wasn’t scared for the reason I thought I would be.
As I laid there, contemplating my reality while waiting for test results, I became angry with what I was seeing on the playback of my life. All I saw was a human being that had done absolutely nothing, because he thought it would not be worth it. This would be the shortest eulogy ever. I felt worthless, I felt stupid, I felt like human waste that needed to get disposed of. Then it hit me:
A man’s purpose has nothing to do with a man’s future.
You see, my entire life I believed that the future was everything, and, of course, that was solely based on the conditioning that society had given to me since birth. The future is everything, you work hard for your future, you have a set line you are supposed to follow, and it may or may not work at the end. Either way, Life eventually wins, you die and someone gets to take your place. But purpose, why doesn’t anyone ever really talk about purpose, on its own, without having to involve the future?
True fulfillment is based on your hard work, every day, to fulfill your purpose. Your purpose is already deep inside you and you may already know what it is, you just have to stop ignoring the calling. Purpose is not out there in the far future, it is not swayed by your weaknesses or your strengths, or whether your live just for another day or for the next one hundred years. Your purpose is your every-day, your actions towards fulfilling it, every second, every minute, every hour. Purpose is not solely achieving your goals. Once you have accomplished something your innate ambition should move you to pursue something else. Purpose never stops or slows down, it makes you feel accomplished all the time. It is the ride, not the destination. It is the peace of mind that lets you sleep well at night. It is the lack of fear towards death, because once you are fulfilling your purpose your time of death no longer matters. Only the present matters, there is nothing more.
When the doctor came and told me that I was going to be fine, it no longer mattered, I wasn’t afraid any more. I had already refused to die without first fulfilling my purpose, and my first step was finding out what that was.
Things never happen in real life as they do in movies; a complete transformation from one frame to the next. But when you learn to truly live each day as you are supposed to, and not like you are conditioned to, the end result of things goes out the window, and you don’t live to accomplish, you live to experience, develop and build. That is the definition of true fulfillment, and, in my humble opinion, that is the only way to escape the dark side of your mind.
My novel The Flawed Ones talks more in depth about purpose, life, and the humanity that we all carry inside. Get a free copy here.