How Do You Define Your Life’s Purpose?



For you, creating art is one of your life purposes, and one of your meaning opportunities, which are the activities that you use to define yourself. Are there others?

There probably need to be, because putting all of our “meaning eggs” in one basket causes us to rise and fall precipitously based on how our art making and art career are going. That’s emotionally and existentially dangerous!

A better idea is to create a menu and a mix of meaning opportunities that include your art making as well as things such as relationships, activism, service, “being” states like calmness or contentment, and so on.

If you would like to learn more about the ins and outs of life purpose, and even create a revenue stream for yourself, it might turn out that teaching your own life purpose boot camp class is just the thing.

Recently 300 folks gathered in cyberspace and “enlisted” in my eight-week life purpose boot camp. They wanted to change course, chart a new direction, and experience life as more purposeful and meaningful.

Was that even possible? Like millions of other artists, this group had their doubts about the availability of anything genuinely new. What had religious leaders, philosophers, spiritual healers, self-help gurus, con artists, inspirational speakers, and every manner of salesperson, sage and fool not said already?

Part of our epidemic of existential sadness, mislabeled for profit as “the mental disorder of depression,” is rooted in exactly this fear: that everything about life purpose and meaning has been said, that it has all fallen short or proven false, and that ideas like “life purpose” and “meaning” have little leg left to stand on.

But there are indeed new things to say and learn. By identifying meaning as a psychological experience and introducing a corollary language that includes the ideas of “meaning investments” and “meaning opportunities,” a vision of proud, intentional living begins to appear.

What opens up for us is a way to stand up for our values and principles and influence our experience of meaning. We get more meaning because we recognize how to coax it, how to influence it, how even to create it. If you’d like to learn more about these ideas and maybe even teach a life purpose boot camp class yourself, please visit here.

Deepen your understanding of life purpose and help others deepen theirs! Take a look now.

Eric Maisel is the author of Life Purpose Boot Camp. Learn more about Dr. Maisel’s books, trainings, and services at or drop him a line at [email protected].