I will never forget that moment in my first career when I looked across the office and realised that I was never going to get any recognition for working so hard on something that would benefit the whole department. For me, that was the day that I realised that I couldn’t work for an organisation that was going to treat me like a number, not a valued member of the team. Whether I was a naïve 19-year-old living in a Disney fairy tale or aligned to what I felt mattered in life, I’m not sure I knew at that age, however, I do know now that I’m living my life to do what I was meant to do.

Have you ever looked back through your life and thought, there were all these clues that I would end up here? I have. The time Anthony Lishak a famous author came to my children’s school and told me that to receive personalised replies from publishers was unheard of and I should keep writing. The time I nearly died and how it became a defining moment in the life of Mandie Holgate. I truly believe that by tapping into our history, and these clues we can find our true purpose in life.

“Is it really that important to find your true purpose in life?” I asked myself. And realised that so many of my coaching clients are in actual fact looking to understand how they can live according to their true purpose in life. By living to our true purpose, we feel emotions and happiness on a far higher plain of thought. We feel like we are making a difference and living a life, well, purposefully. 

Here are my top tips to finding and living to your true purpose;

1. Appreciate your values. Only today someone was with me and pulled out a copy of my book and said “Chapter 1 made me reevaluate what I want out of life.” That chapter looks at our fear to be who we truly are. By appreciating, respecting and accepting your values in life you can ask yourself “Does my work respect these values?” “Does my lifestyle reflect these values?” and so on. It can be scary to challenge the way you have lived however by having the confidence to look you may discover what really matters to you and what you’ve been ignoring in your life.

2. Become self-motivated. Knowing what matters to you is not going to be enough unless you find the motivation to make it happen. Know on a good day, how you will deal with a bad day. This can become a powerful part of your purposeful kit to keep you going. As children, we rely on our parents to motivate us and inspire to never give up. As teenagers, we need our parents to enable us to learn those skills for ourselves. So if you feel you still lack that ability to be self-motivated, don’t beat yourself up about it, work out how you will become more self-motivated. If you need people to lean on, you are not a robot or an island so ask for help, however, do accept that ultimately it needs to come from within.

3. Value yourself. So many people I’ve helped have told me they want help with one area of their life and yet for most, we start by looking at how they view themselves. I can create an awesome marketing strategy or teach someone everything I know about public speaking confidence however if you think you are worthless or rubbish or nothing special you will damage your chances of success. To live purposefully you need to appreciate that what you want out of life is just as relevant and as important as anyone’s else definition of happiness, success or fun. Which leads on to Top tip Number 4.

4. Build your confidence. You could value yourself and still lack confidence and you could be confident and still not value who you are. The two are interlinked, however, so you can’t do one without impacting on the other. So that works both in a positive way and a negative way. There are many ways to build confidence, start by writing a 2 page A4 document of why you are awesome. Your achievements, your talents, your awards, your successes, no matter how big or small, if you are proud of it, write it down. And if you can’t think of anything, you need that list more than most people so keep going and ask others to help you see your brilliance. 

5. Learn to say No. Many believe we are in an overpopulated, mega busy, over-saturated world where it can feel like everyone is going for the same opportunities and successes as you. “How can we all win?” you find yourself asking. Firstly, come from a place of abundance and an internal knowledge that there is enough out there for everyone. (Believing in scarcity, creates it.) Secondly, learn to say No. I’ve turned down opportunities that have seemed like dream prospects for me. However, if they don’t fit my ethos of “Increasing sales, confidence and success, without you spending a fortune.” Then I don’t do it. My ethos is help as many as I can, and so if it doesn’t fit that, I don’t do it. I appreciate my values, my purpose and goals in life and I stick to them. Ask yourself if you do that and don’t fear to say No.

6. Live by purpose, not on purpose. When my daughter was little she didn’t say “on purpose” she said “by purpose” Thinking about it, I think she had this right. You see on purpose means we are trying to apply ourselves and make things happen. By purpose means it is our natural way and we naturally gravitate to wanting to work and live in that way. Ask yourself if you live by purpose or on it? One will feel natural and the other will feel forced.

7. Take action. So often people take the time to read these articles and think “Great ideas” but do you really take action? Don’t overcomplicate it and don’t attempt too much at once. If you were to take each top tip and work on one of those a week you could be living a more fulfilled, happier and purposeful life doing the things you love within 6 weeks. If you have a tough week who will pick you up, dust you down and say keep going, it’s going to work. And the answer there is it must start with you!


  • Mandie Holgate

    Author of Fight the fear - how to beat your negative mindset and win in life, Lupus doesn't stop me, speaking, coaching, blogging and changing lives.

    I firmly believe that despite adversity or anything else "life" wishes to throw at us we are capable of achieving what wish to, allowed to be happy on our own terms living a life that fulfils us and those that matter to us. And as globalisation happens more and more we all should care not just about those close to us, but to those everywhere. We can all impact on the way people feel, what they feel capable of and their life choices. As founder of The Business Womans Network, one of the UK's youngest automotive body shop managers, illness has never held me back. Happily married (we just remarried again we love each other that much) 2 clever gorgeous kids, a home by the sea and a belief that life can be awesome no matter what you face. Success truly is better shared.