Lack of Purpose



Lack of purpose is nothing to be ashamed of. After all, not everyone knows what they want to do with their life right away. Many colleges, for instance, will allow their students to be undecided rather than having to pick a major through their second or even third year there. Many people will end up changing their career a lot in their lives; not just the job itself, but what type of job they’re working.

A purpose in life can be part of your identity, though; if you lack one, it can often be a sign that you don’t quite know who you are as a person, not just what you want to do with your life. That isn’t necessarily the case with everyone, though; you might just have so many interests that you don’t know what it is you want to do. You’d be happy with anything, but you can’t pick because you like it all. Even though these lacks of purpose are different, they can be equally frustrating because both mean you don’t know what you want to do and lack direction in life.

Challenges Faced When You Lack Purpose

If you really feel like you don’t know what you want to do with your life, you face a lot of challenges. They aren’t necessarily big ones; you can get a job that doesn’t require some kind of degree or training, and you can go to a university without a set major while you figure out what you want.

However, if you wait too long to figure out just what it is you want to do, you can end up suffering. A lack of purpose can be just part of your problem, after all. If you don’t know what you want to do with your life as far as your education and career, it can mean you don’t know anything about what you want to do with your life, depending on your age and where you already are. Do you know where you want to live? If you want to get married? What you want to do with your free time?

Another time someone might find a lack of purpose is in the classic “midlife crisis” scenario. You’ve no doubt seen this, if not in real life, then on TV: you’re in your mid-forties or maybe a bit earlier, and suddenly you realize you’re halfway through life and haven’t accomplished anything that you’ve really wanted. In this case, you wouldn’t lack purpose because you don’t know what you want to do, but because there are so many things you want to do and had planned on doing by then, but you haven’t been able to. Plans change, priorities change. There’s nothing wrong with that. Plenty of people experience the midlife crisis.

How a Lack of Purpose Affects Relationships

How lack of purpose can affects your relationships can vary depending on what you try to do about it. If you don’t do anything, and stay at a low-level job, it might be fine. Or those around you might try to convince you to try harder because they know you can do better. Of course, if you aren’t sure what it is you want to do in life, it could start to grate on your nerves; after all, if you don’t know what you want to do, how can someone else tell you to try harder?

It can also be detrimental to finding relationships, though if you don’t know what you want out of a relationship either, it might not be quite that big of a dilemma. A lot of relationships stem from similar interests; not just romantic relationships, but making friends as well. Many people bond with people who have similar goals as well, and if you lack a goal, then of course you won’t have that support system.

How Therapy Can Help

A lot of people are able to figure out what it is they want to do with their lives on their own. However, if you can’t, or you just feel like you need help, going to therapy can be an immensely good experience. You don’t have to have anything particularly wrong in your life to lack purpose, and therapy isn’t just for that kind of person. A therapist can encourage you to think about what it is you like to do, and help you decide how you could make that into a career.

Going to career counseling is also helpful, because not only will they be able to help you decide what it is that you want to do, they often have extensive resources. They’ll be able to give you job listings that aren’t public, and help you get ready for interviews. They can also direct you towards universities or trade schools you might want to go to for training in a field you decide you want to try.

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