General Question

wallabies's avatar

Do you ever feel like you are meant to do something greater with your life?

Asked by wallabies (1081points) April 7th, 2012

What do you think you’re supposed to do?

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15 Answers

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Keep_on_running's avatar

Yep, become an astrophysicist. (pshyeah like that was gonna happen with ma stoopid brainz)

dabbler's avatar

@zensky I like that quintessentially zen answer !

Lots of philosophies recommend meditation to assist one to determine one’s purpose.

Where a lot of folks go wrong is assuming they’re destined to be queen or president or an astronaut or something else glamorous. They see in their reflections an answer that does not look like that and are disappointed or keep looking. Most of us are destined to be solid citizens, for us the answer is ‘appreciate each moment’ and ‘make the best of it’ and ‘be kind’ and ‘be excellent to each other’.

Mariah's avatar

Yeah for a while I was convinced I was gonna be working for NASA. I still would like to, but I have since realized that goals like that require precedence over other things, like say, personal wellbeing. I was willing to adopt that set of priorities for a while, but not anymore.

LostInParadise's avatar

Sometimes I will start beating up on myself, thinking about what I should have done, that maybe if I had applied myself more I could have been a mathematician or a scientist or a great educator. Then I will console myself with a more existential view. For better or worse, I am the sum of my choices. Don’t focus on the past, but instead concentrate on the choices that I still have to make the most of myself.

linguaphile's avatar

I have a blessing and a curse—I’m never satisfied. It keeps me driven to do more and more. I naturally seek new opportunities, learning experiences, and make sure that the quality of my work continues to get better. Even when my projects are done, I’m not satisfied—I had to learn to decide when it’s done and be happy with what’s there, even if I’m not completely satisfied. The curse end of it is, my expectations are really high so it can come across as never being happy with the results when I am happy. It also makes me quite impatient with lazy people who do minimal quality work.

Because of that, yes, I do feel like I’m meant to do something, probably simply from sheer stubbornness.

gailcalled's avatar

I often look back on my frantic behavior in my twenties and thirties…husband, babies, job, two homes, large family, appearance, and I laugh now.

Have you ever stumbled on a to-do list from 15 years ago?

Who cared, who cares, who will care?

Sunny2's avatar

Nope. Too late. What’s done is done and that was it.

Coloma's avatar

“Purpose” is ever changing. My “purpose” has shifted many times over the years, and now, in my early 50’s my fondest desire is to fully express my creative side. I write, and I really want to try my hand at writing and doing some standup comedy. I have the gift of verbosity and humor and really think I could entertain others. This is something I am aspiring too at this time. Last night I had an entire table of strangers cracking up as we waited on chinese takeout. My improv is strong and I like to “practice” on others. Now, if only I can get myself up on a stage. lol

Never buy into only having one purpose, and always know that your strengths are those that give you plenty of clues as to what “purpose” is best suited to you. :-)

gondwanalon's avatar

Yes I get that feeling now and then. It is one of the things that keeps me going through all the mundane, tedious and boring aspects of my life. But many other things keep me going as well.

In reality, I have accepted my main purpose in life which is worker bee.

However I wish that my main purpose was that of athlete, artist and general kahuna.

augustlan's avatar

Often, when I was younger. I’ve come to peace with it, pretty much, at this point, though. It’s enough for me to make my little corner of the world a little better. Raise good kids who can go out and do the same. Ever-widening ripples in the pond, you know?

Shippy's avatar

Yes, but the greatness changes, at the moment peace of mind is the greatest thing I need to do.

Bellatrix's avatar

I don’t strive for ‘greatness’. I think if I am living a meaningful life for myself and those who love me, then I will have done okay.

After my father died many people said how he had touched their lives in a very positive way. He took the time to listen to people and share his wisdom, but he never expected people to follow his suggestions. To me that is a successful life. A smile to a person who passes you on the street can make a huge difference to that person’s day. Listening to a person tell their story when you don’t have to can make someone feel like they matter. I think when it is all over, if I have tried and succeeded in ‘touching’ some people (even those I meet in passing) in a positive way, I will have lived a great life.

dabbler's avatar

An often cited apocryphal tale about a zen master tells of a question asked about the difference before and after enlightenment.
The master was asked “What was life like before you attained enlightenment?” to which he replied “I chopped wood and carried water.”
“And what is life like now that you have attained enlightenment?” “I chop wood and carry water.”
One of the implications is that chopping wood and carrying water are as great as anything else you can do.

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