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12 Questions to Help You Uncover Your Unique Life Purpose

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“The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.”― Mark Twain

I often have clients come to me because they are wanting to uncover their “purpose.”

What this comes down to is that they feel like something is missing in their life.

They feel a sense of emptiness and don’t believe they are on the right path.

They are looking for that answer to life’s big questions, “What am I supposed to do with my life?” “Why am I here?”

These are immensely vast questions. There are unlimited ways someone could answer, and for that reason many people find it overwhelming and difficult to commit to making a decision.

It makes it feel like once we decide on our “purpose” we are married to this decision in sickness and in health, until death do us part.

So, how are we really supposed to know?

Fortunately, “purpose” doesn’t have to be such a loaded word. It doesn’t have to be such a spiritual or mystical concept.

The good news is our purpose is chosen by us! We get to decide what our purpose is going to be.

And frankly our purpose isn’t a static or limited. It is something that evolves and changes as we experience new things and grow as a person.

We get to determine what will fill our lives with meaning and fulfillment.

To me, purpose is just one way to describe what people are seeking.

Other ways to describe this same idea are finding what they feel passionate about or simply what they deeply desire.

But, to make things a little more concrete here is a formula or set of inquires that may be helpful.

If you feel a little existentially lost right now, take some time to answers these questions and see what appears for you.

  • What is the most meaningful thing you have experienced?
  • What unique knowledge do you possess?
  • What hobbies do you enjoy? Why do you enjoy them?
  • What are your top four values? (here is a list to select from)
  • What makes you really really excited?
  • What are the themes that keep appearing in your life? 
  • What early memories stand out from childhood and your teenage years?
  • What do these memories mean to you?
  • What do they mean about the world?
  • What strengths did you develop because of these experiences?
  • What specific skills or expertise do you possess?
  • What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?

This list could go on and on, but I’ll leave it at this for now.

Answering these questions can help you uncover what you are drawn to and where you have experienced success.

But at the end of the day, you are in charge of uncovering your purpose. No one can do it for you.

Keep seeking your truth and be to open to possibilities you haven’t consider before.

You never know what answers you might find.

“Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it” ― Gautama Buddha


12 Questions to Help You Uncover Your Unique Life Purpose

Joe Wilner

Joe Wilner is a life coach, licensed clinical psychotherapist (LCP), and drummer from the band Yes You Are. He is also creator of You Have a Calling, a blog and online community helping people discover and pursue their life’s work and mission. Through deep and personalized coaching, he helps ambitious, creative, and spiritually minded individuals make a greater impact, grow as leaders, and design a soulful life they are inspired by.

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APA Reference
Wilner, J. (2014). 12 Questions to Help You Uncover Your Unique Life Purpose. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 19, 2020, from


Last updated: 19 Aug 2014
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