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Does “fulfilling your life purpose” sound a bit scary and overwhelming? Does it feel like that statement should be accompanied by the sound of trumpets as wisdom falls from on high? Do you feel like you don’t even know where to start?

Maybe…just maybe…it would be easier to stay where you are – you know, play it safe, stay small, unobtrusive…you know…”normal.”

“Cue loud, angry buzzer” NOT!!!

When you read the previous sentence, wasn’t there a nagging feeling in the back of your mind that said “You could be doing something meaningful, something that pulls at your heart, right? You could be living your best, most authentic life.”

But how do you get started?

Here are three steps to gently start your journey to living a more authentic, purposeful life. Just remember to be kind to yourself and take baby steps – because Baby Steps Forward are STILL Steps Forward!

Step 1: Determine what you’re scared of

The first step toward fulfilling your purpose is to have a good look at what scares you about that concept – how does it feel to seriously consider fulfilling your life purpose and livinglighted Be afraid of the enformity of the rossible neon signage your authentic life? Does it feel risky? Do you feel vulnerable? What if you fail? What if people laugh at you? If it’s any comfort, these are thoughts and worries that afflict everyone. Don’t worry; you’re not alone.

The difference between you and everyone else is that YOU are going to take focused action to move forward.

Start by writing down everything that comes into your head at the thought of finding your life purpose.  This is where a journal would come in handy, but if you don’t have one yet, just use regular paper, or you can even type into a memo on your smartphone or on your tablet or laptop.

Don’t filter or critique what comes to mind – just write what you think. You can use the prompt “If I intentionally live my purpose, I’m afraid that…” and write down what follows. Give yourself the gift of time and space – it’s important to express this clearly.

Now, take a deep breath, and respond to a second question “What do the scared parts of me need, to feel supported? Write this answer down in your journal or on your paper as well. Until you know what it is that scares you and what you need to feel supported, you can’t begin to ask for help, or reinforcement, or support.

Be afraid…then do it anyway!

Step 2: Give yourself permission to change

Change neon light signageEverything in nature changes and grows – plants, animals – everything. It is not normal to stay in the same state or position for a lifetime whether you’re an acorn, a puppy, or a person. Embrace the potential of change, challenge, and personal growth.

Giving yourself permission to change and grow opens you up to limitless possibilities. By saying yes to change, you are giving the Universe permission to give you opportunities you may never have dared dream of receiving.  Start growing and reinforcing your belief in your own strengths and abilities – challenges are there to test you, but you wouldn’t have made it THIS FAR without overcoming more than one challenge, right?

Know that you CAN accomplish what you set your mind to – consider the changes you desire and the growth that your goals are pushing you toward, and then? Say YES to change, YES to growing beyond who and what you are right now, and see what happens.

Step 3: Don’t be afraid to be your authentic self

No one in the history of this wide, wonderful world has ever been like you.

You have your own set of talents, skills, passions, and experiences. Only you can make your contribution to the world – it’s part of YOUR purpose. So – hear me on this – stop trying to fit in and be like everyone else in the herd.

Stop comparing yourself to others and anticipating their judgment of you. The only thing that should give you pause is the thought of wasting all your talent by not shining your light.

If you feel bashful about striking out on your path, remember no one else can be your best you. You have a unique perspective, a powerful and genuine heart, and a brilliant mind that is waiting to be unleashed in service of your purpose. Take the first steps on the journey, and watch the wind rise at your back to push you forward, and the road rise to meet you as you progress.

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About the Author Dianne Daniels

Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, and currently residing in Norwich, Connecticut, Dianne M. Daniels' mission is to empower women 50+ to Amplify their Self-Confidence, Deepen their Self-Knowledge, Inspire Creativity, and Glide into the next phase of their lives with the Power of Journaling, Affirmations, and Assessments.

You can learn how to use these time-tested, proven practices to create and manifest the life you want (and deserve) to live.

Dianne is an ordained Unitarian Universalist Minister with a Master of Divinity degree from Starr King School for the Ministry. She's an avid reader, a lover of old houses (she renovated an 1850s vintage Greek Revival home with her family) and has been journaling since the age of 9.

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