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     Legacy Of A Life On Purpose

As long as I can remember, I've yearned to make a DIFFERENCE in people's lives, and thanks to the grace of God I've had ample opportunities. I don't believe there's anything I've done in my various professional capacities that's been any more rewarding or difference-making than taking an active role in raising my daughter, Amber, with my wife, Ann. As one of her parents and her life purpose coach, it is my strongest desire that Amber grow up knowing who she is and WHY God placed her on planet earth. I guess that's why the last piece of coaching I always give her is simply, "Remember, be yourself and have fun expressing your life purpose. Everything else will flow from that."

It is my hope and intention that a part of my legacy to my daughter and the rest of humankind is a new perspective on what a life purpose is -- a way of viewing life purpose that allows people to live true to their life purpose in their ENTIRE life rather than in just a few areas.

It's my contention that how we view the concept of a life purpose has a tremendous influence on how we answer the question, "what is MY life purpose?" A life purpose is what I1m here to do while on earth, with the key word being DO. For most people this equates to them considering their life purpose to be either their job or career, or a primary role in life like parent, spouse, or family member.

It also means that much of their life is left out of their life purpose. For example, a few years ago my dentist read on my records that I was a life purpose coach, to which he said, "Boy, my dad could us you right now. He's been a prominent physician in this part of the country for close to 40 years, but now, because of his health he can no longer practice. He feels lost. He has no sense of purpose or meaning to his life." The same LOSS of purpose is true for many men and women who retire or who experience the "empty nest syndrome" when their children grow up and leave home, if they1ve misidentified their life purpose to be a good parent.

But there's another way to view a life purpose that I call the "life on purpose" perspective. I invite you to consider that a life purpose is the CONTEXT, vessel or container into which you pour your life. And just like a cup gives form and shape to the liquid poured inside of it, the same is true for a life purpose -- it gives shape and form to your life. From this perspective, all the things we do in our life become ways in which we can EXPRESS our life purpose, making it possible to live true to our purpose our whole life.

One of my favorite power tools for living on purpose is purposeful play, in part because it's made such a difference in my life and many other people that I've coached. It goes like this. Working on a project, goal, or task in such a way that you're willing to play and EXPERIMENT with it while having a particular plan or intention. The secret to purposeful play is being committed to a particular result or outcome without being ATTACHED to that outcome. There are 3 important parts to this tool for living on purpose:

The spirit of purposeful play is one of awe, wonder, exploration and discovery. It's a spirit of adventure. So often, as adults, we enter into our next goal or project far too SERIOUSLY. The spirit of such serious and significant projects is one of "produce the results -- no matter what." But you know how nuts most of us become about producing results? We become so attached to them and caught up in the need to produce them that life becomes all about the results. We end up missing out on the joy and SATISFACTION that could come from the project.


W. Bradford Swift is director of Life On Purpose Institute -- an organization dedicated to people clarifying their life purpose and living true to it -- where he is a coach, writer and trainer for other coaches. You may visit his website at www.coachingonpurpose.com. You may contact him at or 1-800-668-0183.

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