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Finding Your Life’s Purpose Is Overrated. Why Stopping the Search Is More Fulfilling.

Updated: Feb 22, 2021

Here I go again. Restless. Craving to travel to see more of the world. I'm getting ready to go back to India to experience something unknown. Whatever it is, whomever I meet will become a part of my lifelong, truth-seeking journey.

I am a seeker and always will be. Many of us are seekers, curious about life, changing all the time, moving from one interesting experience to another.

Seekers get a bad rap. We come across as flighty, soul-searchers who have no clue what they want to do. We come across as restless and always struggling to find happiness and that 'ONE thing' that will finally make us stop searching. We think there is something wrong with us, since others seem to be so 'settled'. We might even try to stop seeking.

I know what stirs my soul, but sometimes there is a part of me that attempts to push it away by telling myself to find peace with being in one place, focus on one career path, read one book at a time, be content with a simple life, and so on. I know by now that pushing anything away simply backfires.

Be Curious

Relief. I listened to a great clip from Elizabeth Gilbert the other day. It is titled "Flight of the Hummingbird - The Curiosity Drive Life." There are wonderful messages in the video, but one really spoke to me - she mentioned that many of her talks about inspiring people to find their one passion and to live it, well, were not maybe helpful to some people. Me included.

There are people who are born and determine right away that they want to be a writer, a doctor, a fireman, and then they go about their life and actually live and breathe their passion. There are also people who really don't care and are content with their life just as it is. Then there are people like me who would love to find that 'ONE thing'; their reason for being born.

We spend years searching for it, looking high and low, trying many different jobs, studying a variety of topics, moving from city to city, and somehow finding our passion is harder than finding that infamous needle in a haystack. The search becomes stifling. Years go by and we continue to try new experiences. At the beginning, we are excited, and give thanks that we finally found it. Despair again. We end up in the same sinking 'what's next' ship.

A Hummingbird's View

Low and behold, the curiosity driven life. I love it. Search no longer for the 'ONE thing' and just be a hummingbird, as Liz Gilbert mentioned. Did you know that most birds fly by flapping their wings downwards? Hummingbirds are unique, since they can also lift on the upstroke by inverting their wings. This becomes complex, since the hummingbird is constrained by its skeleton and how it can maneuver is unknown. The hummingbird's flight mechanism is completely different than other birds. Being a hummingbird means we are unique. We can fly forwards, backwards, sideways, and straight up. We are small and agile and can maneuver in any situation. We have many interests, we start things with a fire in our belly, we get them going, and then we move on to another interest. Along the way, we touch people and make a difference. We bring people and situations together that would have never been had it not been for our 'passion du jour'.

Search No More

Now and then, I used to scream out loud, "What's the ONE thing? Tell me. I am here, I am willing and able, what is it?" A powerful answer finally came to me the other day. It was loud and clear. The 'ONE thing' that I need to do is that whatever I do, do it with love and be 100% involved. Do it as if it is the last thing I will do on this earth.

Think about a time where you may have crossed someone's path and engaged in a pleasant conversation. Perhaps you listened to a stranger who was struggling with something in his or her life. By taking time to be involved in the moment, you probably helped this person and did not even realize it. At that moment, on this earth, that was your purpose. That was your one reason for living - to touch the soul of a stranger.

Fly, Fly, Fly

I don't know about you, but I am glad to be this beautiful hummingbird. I will continue to spread my wings to fly to unknown places, whether in my hometown or thousands of miles away. It is in these places that we can experience life and uncover something about ourselves that we would have never known had we not flown.

There may never be just 'ONE thing' for me. I find freedom in finally embracing that concept. Since I will no longer be searching for my passion, and I don't feel the pressure to find something that only existed in my mind, then all I need to do is to fully live my life each day.

Remember, not all who wander are lost. Those who wander find things about themselves that may never have been discovered had they remained. By trying, you experience life. When you experience life, you learn and grow. Each action creates not only a new experience, but also helps you see a new way of looking at your one, beautiful, true SELF.

Are you ready to embrace your wings and fly? "Seeking means admitting that you do not know. Once you have cleared your slate, truth can imprint itself upon it." -- Sadhguru

Note- Originally published on the Huffington Post on January 14, 2016

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