Chapter 31: Find Your Purpose In Life
Workbook Chapter Thirty-One
Find Your Purpose In Life
Purpose, Intention and Goals
Barry K. Weinhold, Ph.D.
How do you to define your life goals? What do you want to accomplish through your personal therapy? How do you determine whether or not what you are meeting these goals? Below is a process that you can use to reach your goals.
Step #1: What is the purpose in life? In a sentence or two write a Purpose Statement. It should be stated in such a way that it will never be completely finished. An example might be: “I want to be able to live my life more authentically using of my true self and not my false self in everything I do and say and as a result I will become a model for others who wish to live more authentically out of their true self.”
Step # 2: What Are Your Intentions? Intentions are wants and needs. Make a list of intentions (wants and needs) that you hope your life might bring to you. After you have written your list, check them against your Purpose Statement to see if they are “on purpose” and fit with that statement. Perhaps an intention such as “I want to change the world and become rich and famous” may not be in line with what you wrote in your Purpose Statement. Cross off or change any intentions that are not in line with your purpose statement.
Step #3: Get Rid of the Clutter in Your Life. Make a list of all the projects and plans that you have made that are not completed at this time. After you have written your list, go back over it and do one of two things with the items on your list:
1) Cross off all the items that you believe you will probably never complete. They may have seemed like a good idea at the time, but where you are now, they no longer are as important.
2) Place a completion date next to the rest of the items. Make plans to complete these items on your list, By setting a date to do that, you are making a commitment to do that.
Step#4: Determine Your Goals. The way to do this is by writing an email or letter to a friend, dated June 8, 2020. Tell this friend what you have accomplished in your life during this time. Include each of the intentions you listed above.
Then you can turn your letter or email into goals and set up short-term goals to check your progress. If you want to complete the goal in one year, what do you need to do tomorrow or next week. I suggest at first you write some daily and weekly goals to get you started. Then, if you don’t need to have this many short-term goals, you can decide to check on your progress toward these goals on a monthly or quarterly basis. It is a good idea to write on your calendar the dates where you are going to check on your progress on each of your goals. This way, by meeting your short-term goals, you can motivate yourself to stay the course and accomplish what you intended to do during this time period.
Harold age, 32, started therapy because his dad committed suicide twelve years ago. And he has not been able to get through his grief and move on. I asked him to write a letter to his dad and include everything he did not get to say to his dad that he still wanted to say, I also suggested that he include any questions he had that he wanted to ask him.
When he had finished his letter, I asked him to put the image of his dad in an empty chair in front of him. When he signaled to me that he had an image of his dad sitting in the chair in front of him, I told him to read his letter to his dad. When he had questions like, Dad, tell me why you felt you had no choice, but to omit suicide?
I then had him switch chairs and answer as he thought his dad might answer that question. Speaking as his da, he said the following, “I am so sorry I had to leave you this way. I tried everything I could think of to avoid it. I felt so bad about what I had created for your mom and you. I simply could not face the future, that I knew was coming. I hope you can forgive me for killing myself.”
Then I had Harold switch back and answer what his dad was asking. Harold then said the following, “Yes, I can forgive you, but I don’t completely understand the circumstances that caused you to kill yourself.”
In order to get closure, Harold requested and read a copy of the accident report that was filed at the local police department. It gave him some details that he didn’t know. He was able to learn the method his dad used to kill himself. He suffocated himself with a plastic bag over his head while sitting in his car. A construction worker found him.
Harold then had a long talk with his mother, where he learned that his dad had not paid his taxes for 8-9 years and owed over one million dollars to the IRS. He also owed several hundred thousand dollars to others that he could not pay. As an attorney for several estates, he took money from their trust fund. The court case on this crime was coming up in just 5 days before he died. He had been seeing a psychiatrist and was taking an anti-depressant.
Harold told me what he had learned about his dad’s childhood. His dad grew up in a very strict Catholic family. He had a lot of shame as result. Apparently, everything he thought his parents would disapprove of, he hid from them. He led a secret life and did not share his burdens with anyone.
After doing this work, Harold felt complete and was ready to move on. He told me that his encounter with his dad in the empty chair was very real for him. He said, “If was like he was really sitting there,” I also remined him that if he found that he wanted to talk further with his dad, he could use the method to connect with him any tie he felt a need to talk with him. I said to Harold, “You had lost connection with your dad, but now you can connect with him any time you feel a need to talk with him.”
We then began working on his other issues, including an addiction to pot. He has made significant progress in controlling his pot addiction. The last time I talked with Harold, he reported that he had gone 30 days without any pot. The other issue he is working on is learning to be vulnerable and to share his burdens and feelings with people he is close to. He does not want to be like his dad in that way.
ﾠLife Review – Guided Meditation
Barry K. Weinhold, PhDﾠ
I am about to ask you to review your life. Begin by thinking about your day. Go back to when you woke up this morning. Try to remember in sequence of events that happened today. Use as many of your senses as you can: see the events, hear what was said, taste and smell and feel what happened . . .Now go back to something that happened to you last week and recall as vividly as possible what happened . . .. Now go back to the past month . . . Now the past year . . . Recall an event further now, to your college years, or the time just after high school, and remember an event from your life at that time . . . Now go back to high school . . . to junior high school . . . to elementary school . . . to when you entered school . . .
ﾠ ﾠ ﾠRecall your first day of school . . . How did you feel? What happened to you? . . . Now go back further to when you were a pre-school child and remember an event from your life . . . now go back to when you were two years old . . . a baby . . . Now go back to the time of your birth and remember, allowing whatever memory traces you have to emerge . . . Now go back to the time you were still in your mother's womb . . . and finally go back to a time before your conception . . .
ﾠ ﾠ ﾠIn your unborn state, imagine you are about to meet your double, your own true self that you gave up or lost somewhere before you grew up . . .
ﾠ ﾠ ﾠExperience your double standing in front of you, facing you . . . Dialogue with you true self. Get acquainted again. Breathe with your true self and build a rhythm between the two of you . . . When you feel connected again with your true self, feel yourself merging with him or her so you feel and see the two of you together . . .
ﾠ ﾠ ﾠWhen you feel this reunion, begin to re-experience each of the events of your life, this time reunited with your true self, putting aside the old masks and false selves you used to hide your true self . . . Start with re-experience your time in the womb . . . Now re-experience your birth … ﾠWatch now for the pressure to put away your true self and guard against this . . . Now re-experience your life up to age two, this time keeping the union with your true self . . .Now up to the age of five or six . . . Now your first day of school . . . Now up the age of twelve . . . Now through junior high school . . .and on through high school . . . Now to college or up to about age twenty-two . . .
ﾠ ﾠ ﾠNow last month . . . last week . . . and finally, come back to the present time, still being reunited with your true self. When you are ready, slowly open your eyes and bring your attention to focus on your surroundings.