Losing touch with your inner compass can show up in a few different ways…
- Feeling restless, with a sense that something is missing
- Feeling overwhelmed with your life, leaving little opportunity for joy
- Feeling an inner push-pull, caught between conflicting agendas
If you’ve lost touch with your compass, it means that your actions are mostly driven either by demands of the outside world or outdated beliefs that no longer serve you, rather than guided by the presence of your inner truth.
Connecting to the compass of your inner truth is not a “one and done,” and neither is knowing your purpose. The most potent understanding of life purpose is not a static statement or set of statements that are framed on the wall. Things that were highly purposeful even a few months ago may no longer be on target for who you are becoming. The kind of purpose that serves the full expression of your inner truth is dynamic, alive, and constantly evolving, just as you are.
Imagine never updating your car’s GPS system. You count on it to show you where you are and how to get to where you want to go. But then you might be invited to a special event at new location that isn’t on your version of GPS, leaving you scrambling for a new and different navigation method. It happened to me!
Whatever the cause of disconnection from your dynamic inner GPS, the first step is to reassess all the major activities taking up your time. Get clarity on your small why’s in order to make room for your Big Why. Make a simple grid listing the activities down the leftmost column, and a listing of the reasons why you do them. Typical reasons include income, professional development, family, community, joy, “feel I should,” etc. Then, mark an “X” in the grid to match up the reasons with the activities.
Once you’ve completed your grid, step back and see what you notice. Then close your eyes, take a few deep breaths, and tune into your heart. Is there anything on the list that no longer serves you? What can you delay, delegate or delete?
Then, continuing your inner reflection, is there anything that needs to be added to your list that your heart is calling for? Ask yourself what is needed to align your life more fully with your purposeful calling. It could be something as simple as spending an hour a week in reflective journaling to explore what lies underneath your heart’s longing. Or perhaps it’s time to take that course or start writing that book that’s been hovering in the back of your mind.
Frederick Buechner says that your calling is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet. What Bigger Why of yours is waiting to be fulfilled?