Purpose of Living – Part 16: Building Ourselves to be Fit for Purpose

Building ourselves to live purposefully

We explored the notion of purpose from various viewpoints in the first ten blog posts in this series. We then started making sense of our purpose in the last five blog post. I invite you to now reflect on the fourth aspect in the model of purposeful living– Building – the light blue colour circle in the model. While this is the fourth circle, in real life it can happen anywhere in the nine steps; it’s not necessarily chronological.

This blog-post deals with building ourselves to be fit for purpose. I believe that God almighty or the universal energy system, or whatever way you make sense of the energy that makes life tick, would send us the opportunities to make our contribution to life. It could be a calling, a vocation, an opportunity to serve or an opportunity to further develop ourselves.

When I had a glimpse of my purpose 22 years ago, I decided to build myself by developing my spirituality through regular prayer and meditation, my health through regular visits to the gym, my relationships through spending more quality time with my family and team members, and my knowledge through re-introducing the reading habit to my life. These are four areas where we need to build ourselves; spiritual, physical, relational and mental. I started improving in these four areas and I felt successful and happy as a result, giving me peace of mind resulting in the improvement of the fifth aspect; emotional. I found I was getting less angry and was less frustrated when things did not go according to my plans. Continue reading “Purpose of Living – Part 16: Building Ourselves to be Fit for Purpose”

Purpose of Living – Part 15: Purposeful Choices

 

purposeful choices
Image credit: http://www.emzingo.com

We explored the notion of purpose from various viewpoints in the first ten blog posts in this series. We then started making sense of our purpose in the last four blog post. I invite you to now reflect on the third aspect in the model of purposeful living– The choices (the orange colour circle in the model). While this is the third circle, in real life it can happen anywhere in the nine steps; it’s not chronological in real life.

This aspect deals with making choices once we have a glimpse for the beginning of what our purpose might be. When I had a glimpse of my purpose 22 years ago, I made choices such as finding opportunities to improve my knowledge regarding personal development through Neuro Linguistic Programming and organisational development through continuous improvement by reading and conducting training for my team at Keells Super, and attempting to apply this knowledge in my work and personal life. I started organising public workshops in Sri Lanka featuring Omar Khan of Sensei International, who opened my eyes to see this new world, so that more people can benefit from his gift. I started spending more time with my family because helping them grow and see them grow gave me joy. They are the oxygen that energized my flame. These choices were relevant to my purpose, which was about helping myself grow to my fullest potential by helping others to grow to their fullest potential. I started going to the gym regularly as I wanted to keep my body in shape so that I am fit to do purposeful work. I started to pray and meditate regularly and felt peace of mind. I also started to be more helpful to others thereby building high quality relationships. I knew all these were in some way connected to my purpose as I really felt good doing it. Continue reading “Purpose of Living – Part 15: Purposeful Choices”

Purpose of Living – Part 12: Making Sense of our purpose – the space

psychic energy
Image credits: http://getcontent.wordpress.com

We explored the notion of purpose from various viewpoints in the first ten blog posts in this series. We then started making sense of our purpose in the last blog post, the eleventh in the series. I invited you to explore a model of purposefulness that has been developed over the past three years of my doctoral studies. This is still work in progress and will continue to evolve in this year of writing my thesis and beyond.  However, I believe it has potential to help us make sense of our purpose because my professional practice over the past 20 years and my doctoral inquiry so far over the past three years has informed me of possible ways of making sense of our purpose.

The model as it stands now, presented in the previous (eleventh) blog post is based on the notion that our sense of purpose, that may evolve with life, is related to making a positive impact on the process of life using the talent, passion and compassion of each living being. I used the metaphor of the sun that provides us energy and inspiration, to explain purpose and the nine planets as the various aspects related to living purposefully. These aspects are related to each other through the space it resides in and I have a hunch that the space is the real thing. Continue reading “Purpose of Living – Part 12: Making Sense of our purpose – the space”

Purpose of Living – Part 11: Making Sense of our purpose – the overview

planetary model of purposefulness
Ranjan’s Model of Purposefulness

We explored the notion of purpose from various viewpoints in the past ten blog posts in this series. I believe it is now time to explore how we can make sense of our purpose. One reason I believe the time is right is because my professional practice over the past 20 years, and my Phd inquiry so far over the past three years has informed me of possible ways of making sense of our purpose. I believe some of the readers have already explored their purpose given various experiences and learnings in their life, and from the suggestions in the ten blog posts in this series so far.

Over the last three years the model of purposefulness has changed from having four components to nine components and from linear to loosely related. This change has happened based on an action inquiry process that took place as I tried to make sense of the notion of purpose by attempting to live a purposeful life in an inquiring manner. Inquiring into the notion in my family life, work life, social life, academic life, reflecting in to my experiences, taking new actions based on the reflection, reflecting based on action, and continuing the action-inquiry process. The model of purposefulness has evolved in this process and I believe it will continue to evolve.

The model as it stands now is presented in this blog post and I will explore the components and their relationships in depth in the blog posts to follow. I believe our purpose is something universal, related to making a positive impact on the process of life. The process of life consists of living beings, both human and other than human, the environment we live in, the resources we need to live such as food, water, fresh air, clothing etc., the infrastructure we need to live such as healthcare, education, transportation, communication, housing, and processes that ensure peace, harmony, joy and morality such as worship, entertainment, sports and marriage. Therefore, each living being has a role to play, based on their talent and passion to make a positive contribution to the process of life and I believe that would help us find our purpose.

Continue reading “Purpose of Living – Part 11: Making Sense of our purpose – the overview”

Purpose of Living – Part 10: The Action Logics (Post – Conventional) Viewpoint

Action logics - post con copy
Post – Conventional Action logics & Life Purpose

We explored the notion of purpose from the viewpoints of Abrahamic Religions, Eastern Philosophies, Early Sciences, Modern Sciences, Philosophy, Psychology, Ecology and Action Logics (pre-conventional) viewpoints in the past blog posts in this series. Let’s now have a look at this notion from an ‘Action Logics (post-conventional)’ viewpoint.

I started the previous blog post with an attempt to understand the notion of ‘Action Logics’, which tries to explain the ‘logic’ behind the ‘action’ we take. Most unspontaneous actions are based on decisions, which are rational, and therefore they could be based on an intention, reason or purpose. The four pre-conventional action logics; opportunist, diplomat, expert and achiever, explored in the last blog post was based on the degree of mutuality and expertise.

Let’s attempt to explore post-conventional action logics in this blog post based on the proposition by Greuter Cooke (2002). According to a research study in the USA of about 4300  adults, it was found that 18.2% belong to the post-conventional group. While it is difficult to define post-conventional, to me it seems like those who are more mature, wiser, selfless, seeking happiness through harmony, simplicity, generosity and spirituality, would fall into this group. Continue reading “Purpose of Living – Part 10: The Action Logics (Post – Conventional) Viewpoint”

Purpose of Living – Part 9: The Action Logics (pre-conventional) Viewpoint

action logics -pre con copy
Pre-conventional Action Logics

We explored the notion of purpose from the viewpoints of Abrahamic Religions, Eastern Philosophies, Early Sciences, Modern Sciences, Philosophy, Psychology & Ecology in the last few blog posts in this series. Let’s now have a look at this notion from an ‘Action Logics (pre-conventional)’ viewpoint.

Let’s first try to understand the notion of ‘Action Logics’. It tries to explain the ‘logic’ behind the ‘action’ we take. Most action is based on decisions unless it is spontaneous. If decisions are well thought out and rational, they could be based on an intention, reason or purpose. This shows that actions can be based on a reason or purpose.

Therefore, the logic behind decisions we make that determine actions we take, could have an impact on the quality of the decision and the resultant action. The notion of action logics[1] has some potential in understanding this phenomenon.

The developers of the ‘Action Logics’ model proposes two broad categories of Action Logics: pre-conventional and post conventional. According to a research study in the USA of 4300 plus adults, it was found that 85% belong to the pre-conventional group. While it is difficult to define pre-conventional, to me it seems like those who are more materialistic, achievement oriented, less mature, younger and competitive would fall in to this group. Let me try to make sense of the four pre-conventional ‘Action-Logics’ in relation to purposeful living. Continue reading “Purpose of Living – Part 9: The Action Logics (pre-conventional) Viewpoint”

Purpose of Living – Part 8: The Ecological View Point

mahogany landslide may 2017
Natures Wrath: Landslide of a Mahogany Plantation

We explored the notion of purpose from the viewpoints of Abrahamic Religions, Eastern Philosophies, Early Sciences, Modern Sciences, Philosophy and Psychology in the last few blog posts in this series. Let’s now have a look at this notion from some of the Ecological viewpoints.

It’s May 2017. I got a call from the account manager from the company that manages my Mahogany plantation in the Ratnapura district of Sri Lanka. I have some bad news to share with you. What is it? I ask. One of your Mahogany plantations in Munihinkanda has got affected by the recent landslides. We have not been able to access the plantation yet as the authorities have restricted access to the plantations until they are able to confirm that it is secure. What is the extent of the damage? I ask. About ten acres of the plantation has slid down to the river below and we feel it includes one of your plots too. Interestingly I was calm as I heard this news, although the financial loss was going to be quite severe. As I digested this news my mind went to the time that a rubber plantation of a larger extent belonging to my father was destroyed due to a cyclone about 40 years ago. I remembered my involvement in the process of transporting the fallen trees to help my father recover at least a part of the losses. My mind wonders to the hundreds of lives lost due to this storm and thousands who have lost their livelihood as a result. Perhaps the reason for me to be emotionally unmoved by my financial loss could be because these are more severe than the personal financial loss I have incurred. I have watched with dismay so many natural disasters such as hurricanes, tsunami’s, floods, landslides, forest fires etc. happening in various parts of the world. It seems like it is getting more and more intense.

Continue reading “Purpose of Living – Part 8: The Ecological View Point”