What was i made for - Exploring the Concept of Purpose: The Quest for Personal Meaning and Fulfillment - 05/Feb/2024

What was i made for – Exploring the Concept of Purpose: The Quest for Personal Meaning and Fulfillment – 05/Feb/2024

Exploring the Concept of Purpose: The Quest for Personal Meaning and Fulfillment

What is the driving force behind our actions, motivations, and goals? Many times, individuals find themselves pondering the profound question: “What was I made for?” This existential inquiry goes beyond mere curiosity, touching upon the need to understand one’s place in the world and the desire to contribute something of value. This article delves into the multifaceted aspects of personal purpose, exploring philosophical perspectives, psychological insights, and ways to find and fulfill one’s purpose.

Philosophical Perspectives on Purpose and Existence

The philosophical quest for purpose has ancient roots. Classical philosophers such as Aristotle posited that everything has a ‘telos’ or ultimate end. Aristotle argued that the telos of a human being is eudaimonia, often translated as ‘happiness’ or ‘flourishing’. In his view, realizing one’s own potential fully is what constitutes fulfilling one’s purpose.

In modern philosophy, existentialists like Jean-Paul Sartre suggested that life inherently has no purpose and it is up to the individual to create their own meaning through choices and actions. This perspective empowers individual autonomy but also places a significant burden on each person to define their path.

Psychological Understanding of Purpose in Life

Psychology offers insight into how purpose impacts individuals’ depths of mind. Victor Frankl, a Holocaust survivor and psychiatrist, believed that finding meaning in life is a primary human drive. In his book “Man’s Search for Meaning,” Frankl explained how those with a clear sense of purpose could endure significant hardships because of their transcendent goals.

Current psychological studies suggest that having a sense of purpose is strongly associated with better mental health outcomes. Purpose-driven individuals tend to have higher rates of overall well-being, lower incidences of depression, and can even experience physical health benefits like reduced risks of disease.

The Road to Finding One’s Purpose

Discovering personal purpose is a journey that can vary drastically from one individual to another. Some may find purpose in their professions or vocations, while others derive meaning from relationships or personal accomplishments. The diversity in people’s values and beliefs contributes to a wide array of possible purposes.

To begin this personal quest, self-reflection is an essential step. Journaling, mindfulness practices, or dialogue with trusted friends or mentors can illuminate aspects of life that bring fulfillment and joy. Once noted, active steps to nurture and explore these areas can lead to a clearer understanding of one’s purpose.

Implementing Purpose in Daily Life

Finding one’s purpose is just the first step; living out that purpose is where many face challenges. It requires congruence between beliefs and actions — bringing daily activities in alignment with overarching goals serves not only individual happiness but often has ripple effects on society at large. For example, someone may realize their passion for sustainability and seek ways to integrate environmentally conscious decisions into their everyday routines.


  • The idea of inherent purpose has been debated philosophically for millennia with divergent views from different schools of thought.
  • Psychological research indicates that having a strong sense of life purpose is linked to positive mental health outcomes.
  • Active methods for finding one’s purpose might include self-reflection exercises, experimenting with new experiences, engaging in conversations about values and passions, and setting intentional goals.
  • Living out one’s identified purpose demands persistence and often necessitates changes in habits or environment to reflect newfound priorities.
  • Image Description

    The image captivates with colors portraying an individual standing atop a hill during sunset, gazing into the expansive horizon — visually metaphorical for the journey towards finding life’s purpose.