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6 Tips on Finding Your Purpose in Life

Kristin Hall

Medically reviewed by Kristin Hall, FNP

Written by Our Editorial Team

Last updated 1/21/2023

Finding purpose in life is easier said than done, but we’re here to help you figure it out.

Whether we’re aware of it or not, we may all be trying to find our purpose in life. Growing up, we might have gotten ideas about the purpose of life from our families, friends and communities. 

Perhaps you thought the purpose of life was to get married and have kids. Or maybe it was to have a successful career and make lots of money.

But finding your purpose can bring on a greater sense of accomplishment. The only question is, how do you go about finding purpose in life?

Finding purpose or meaning in life can be difficult. With so many options and paths to take, how are you to choose? You might worry that one choice could lead you in the wrong direction or that it’s too late to live a meaningful life.

Keep reading to learn more about finding your purpose in life and how it can benefit you.

Why Should I Find Purpose in Life?

Finding a purpose in life is more than a cliché — it can actually lead to a healthier, happy life.

A 2010 study found that individuals with high levels of eudaimonic well-being — having a strong sense of purpose and feeling like what you do is worthwhile — tend to live longer.

There might even be a connection between finding a purpose in life and better physical health, with fewer heart attacks and strokes, improved sleep and a lower risk of dementia.

And you may find that the more purpose you have, the more money you’ll earn. A 2016 study found that individuals who feel like their work doesn’t have meaning make less money than those who feel a sense of purpose in their careers.

So, finding purpose in life has benefits. But how do you find purpose? Below are tips for finding your purpose in life.

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Tips on Finding Purpose in Life

Living a purposeful life can certainly have a positive effect. While trying to find a sense of meaning and asking what your purpose is can seem like a big question, it’s one worth trying to answer.

Here are some ways you can find a sense of meaning and start living a meaningful life.

Give Back

One way to find meaning in life is by giving back to others. Whether you donate your time, money or skills, doing something for others can help you feel like your life has meaning.

You can volunteer for a nonprofit, donate money to causes you care about or help out people in your daily life with acts of kindness.

Adopt a Growth Mindset

Personal growth and constantly working to become a better version of yourself can help you figure out what your purpose in life is. A growth mindset is a belief that you can grow and improve with hard work, feedback from others and constant learning.

Listening to feedback, for example, might help clarify what your passion or purpose is. You can do this by asking friends and family what comes to mind when they think about you.

Practice Gratitude

Not only does giving back to others add meaning to your life but practicing gratitude can also increase your sense of purpose. Additionally, gratitude may lead to more positive emotions, improve your health and help you build strong relationships.

Build a Community

Finding purpose in life could be as simple as looking at the people you surround yourself with. Meaningful relationships often lead people to find meaning in their own lives because they have a sense of connection and feel support from their communities.

If you’re surrounded by positive people who seem to have a purpose in life, you might find inspiration from them.

Explore Your Interests

While they may just seem like a hobby or a way to pass the time, your passions and interests could hold meaning in your life. With that said, you may already be pursuing your passion in some way.

On the other hand, if you’re feeling a loss of interest in your usual hobbies, taking up new activities could spark a new interest and potential purpose.

Talk to a Professional

If you’re feeling incredibly lost about what your purpose in life is, working with a mental health professional or life coach could help you find clarity.

There are many benefits of therapy beyond improving your psychological well-being. You’ll build self-compassion and resilience while gaining insight into your values, beliefs and the goals you want to achieve.

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Final Words on Finding Your Purpose

Finding purpose in life is a long-term endeavor. While finding a purpose of your own might feel similar to trying to find the meaning of life, there are several ways you can go about it.

Giving back to others, finding a community that supports you, working on personal growth and exploring your passions are just a few ways you can start to find meaning in your life.

Finding the meaning of life — or at least, of your life — is worth the work. There are several potential benefits, from improving physical health and increasing wealth to minimizing negative emotions and improving psychological well-being.

To explore your fullest potential, make strides toward personal growth and live a healthy life, connect with an online therapist at Hers today.

8 Sources

Hims & Hers has strict sourcing guidelines to ensure our content is accurate and current. We rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We strive to use primary sources and refrain from using tertiary references.

  1. Kobau, R, Sniezek, J, Zack, M M, Lucas, RE, Burns, A. Well-Being Assessment: An Evaluation of Well-Being Scales for Public Health and Population Estimates of Well-Being among US Adults. Applied Psychology: 2010: 2: 272-297. Retrieved from ​​https://iaap-journals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1758-0854.2010.01035.x
  2. Musich S, Wang SS, Kraemer S, Hawkins K, Wicker E. Purpose in Life and Positive Health Outcomes Among Older Adults. Popul Health Manag. 2018;21(2):139–147. Retrieved from https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/10.1089/pop.2017.0063
  3. Hill, P. L., Turiano, N. A., Mroczek, D. K., & Burrow, A. L. (2016). The Value of a Purposeful Life: Sense of Purpose Predicts Greater Income and Net Worth. Journal of research in personality, 65, 38–42. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5408461/
  4. Son J. Wilson J. Volunteer Work and Hedonic, Eudemonic, and Social Well-Being. Sociological Forum. 2012;27(3):658-681. Retrieved from https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1573-7861.2012.01340.x
  5. Dweck, C. (2016, January 13). What Having a “Growth Mindset” Actually Means. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved from https://hbr.org/2016/01/what-having-a-growth-mindset-actually-means
  6. Van Tongeren, D. R., Green, J. D., Davis, D. E., Hook, J. N., & Hulsey, T. L. (2015, June 01). Prosociality enhances meaning in life. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 11(3), 225-236. Retrieved from https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/17439760.2015.1048814?journalCode=rpos20
  7. Giving thanks can make you happier. (n.d.). Harvard Health. Retrieved from https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/giving-thanks-can-make-you-happier
  8. DeAngelis, T. (2018, October 1). In search of meaning. American Psychological Association. Retrieved from https://www.apa.org/monitor/2018/10/cover-search-meaning

This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. The information contained herein is not a substitute for and should never be relied upon for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment. Learn more about our editorial standards here.

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