Mind Mapping your purpose in life will enable better goal setting and a more fulfilling life, this was strangely one of the more difficult articles to write. I published the first draft on my blog in January 2010.
It surprised me, as I was thinking for some time about the first article on my blog for the year. It had to be inspirational, but not one of those New Year's resolution types that get forgotten almost the second that it is made.
I had the idea fixed quite clearly in my mind, as well as the points I wanted to get across to you, the reader. Yet the writing was still difficult, as it became a boring set of instructions, which nobody would read or apply.
I then realised that I was not using my own advice! It was the case of 'physician, first heal thyself...'
Once I put together a quick Mind Map burst of ideas around the topic, the structure of the article revealed itself and it became apparent that I did not have to write much, as the Mind Map I had created is self explanatory. The PDF download will help you Mind Mapping your purpose and is in fact a complete worksheet, which you can download and print. You can simply answer the questions on the Mind Map and you will soon realise the extent to which you are 'living on purpose'. Mind Mapping your purpose is a great way in this direction.
I then decided that I would rather give you two case studies, which highlight the principles and not write the article at all, as the Mind Map is self explanatory. The one case study relates to business and the other to a much higher cause.
Success in our modern world is often so one dimensional and based solely on money. You may not have the desire to be insanely wealthy, but simply want to make a difference in the world. Whatever you choose is okay. It's your life and your purpose to live.
In 'Think and Grow Rich', arguably the book that made more millionaires than any other book, Napoleon Hill relates the story of Edward C. Barnes.
Barnes had the unusual desire to become a partner, a business associate, of the greatest inventor of all time, Thomas A. Edison, despite that the fact that he was penniless and looked like a tramp.
He had two major obstacles when he first had the impulse. He did not know Edison and he didn't have the money to get to Edison's offices. This would have put off anybody with less desire. Not Barnes!
When he finally arrived at Edison's offices, he announced that he wanted to go into business with the great inventor. While he did not get to go into business with Edisons immediately, he did land a menial job at a very nominal wage.
He had to wait five years for his opportunity to come. While everyone else just saw him as another cog in the Edison business wheel, he thought otherwise.
Eventually, opportunity came through the back door, as it so often happens. When Edison invented the Edison dictating machine, his salesmen were not too enthusiastic about the machine, as they believed it could not be sold easily. This was Barnes's chance. The rest is history. Barnes eventually got the contract to distribute it across the whole country. He was finally a business associate of Edison!
The best selling authors of the 'Chicken Soup for the Soul' series wrote a book called the Power of Focus. In it, they relay the remarkable story of Terry Fox. When Terry was only 18 years old, he was diagnosed with cancer. The cancer he had (osteosarcoma) often strikes the legs and arms and sometimes spreads to the lungs, brain or liver.
Terry had two choices: give up hope and wait for death, or discover something meaningful to live for. He chose to live with purpose.
He dreamed of running across Canada and even though one of his legs were amputated, he embarked on his journey. He wanted to raise one million dollars for cancer research. Even though he died at the tender age of 22, he raised $24.6 million during his marathon of hope runs.
With his prosthesis (his leg was amputated above the knee), he ran an equivalent of 3,339 miles in only 143 days (the equivalent of a marathon almost every day) and gave hope to thousands of people all over the world.
The Terry Fox foundation continues to this day (www.terryfox.org) and to date over $400 million has been raised for cancer worldwide in Terry's name!
Now, your ideals do not have to be as big and grand as Barnes's or Terry's, but you do need to start 'living on purpose' and not just coast along.
The Mind Map above illustrates a ten step process to get you to live on purpose and Mind Mapping your purpose.
The PDF download is an expanded version of the Mind Map in the article and contains numerous questions for you to answer. I suggest you print the Mind Map and answer the questions directly on the Mind Map. You will then have a one page overview of your 'living on purpose' maturity.
Once you have done the Mind Map worksheet and know where you stand, you can start working on your statement of purpose.
Many companies spend large sums of money on Mission Statements, which hardly anybody remembers and even less apply them. A simple statement of purpose can be easily remembered and easily applied. Create a simple statement of purpose for yourself (keeping it to one simple sentence) and start living it.
I end off with my own one:
To inspire lifelong learning in as many people as I can with methods that are easy to learn, simple to use and produce fast results.I hope that this article inspires you to find your purpose in life and gets you to start Mind Mapping your purpose today.
Use this Mind Map as a Worksheet by adding your own ideas as notes to each of the questions.
You will end up with a wonderful visual guide to your purpose in life. So start Mind Mapping your purpose today.