Purpose can be defined as the reason for which something is done. So, in metaphysical terms, what are you here to fulfill on this earth? What do you have an emotional affinity for? What is it that you are put on this earth to fulfill? Everyone has a purpose but sometimes they spend their entire life trying to figure out what it is. I finally understood what mine was by analyzing my strengths and observing what most people came to me for guidance on. What was I an expert at? What did people know me for? When you understand this, you start to move towards your purpose and God will direct you there as well. You may wander off track every now and again, but you will ultimately end up where you are supposed to be if you are open and receptive to it.
One way to determine your purpose in life is to listen to your gut. What does this mean? Being a practitioner, I know that the gut and brain are intricately related and there are millions of neurons from the brain all the way down through your gastro-intestinal tract. A large percentage of your serotonin and melatonin are produced in the gut. The chemicals, hormones, bacteria and neurotransmitters flow back and forth between the gut and brain, so be keenly aware of what your stomach is telling you. You know that feeling when something does not sit right with you? That uneasiness is a sign to act on it. Do what you have a burning desire to do rather than conforming to what others think you should do.
Journaling is one powerful tool for self-discovery and personal transformation. There are so many thoughts and ideas that go through the human mind each day that is nearly impossible to remember them all. I journal new ideas, projects I want to start, techniques that have worked well for me, new research that has just come out, and much more. The good old fashioned way by hand still gets the job done, but a computer works as well. Do what works for you. The reason why journaling is so important is because that listing your minor victories along the way is a good way to show you how far you have come. It also helps resurrect ideas that you may have forgotten. For example, I started the first few chapters of this book a couple of years ago but because I was so busy with Functional Medicine School, IBM and having kids, I didn’t pick it up again until a few months ago. Everything has a time and a place but because I took copious notes, it was very easy to continue on from where I left off.
Relationships and Consistency
It is important to curate relationships consistently over time. Some of my peers and mentors have never done a day of advertising in their life and this is because their entire business is built upon referrals from family, friends and their network. They have provided so much value and helped so many people that word of mouth is their differentiator. In my current business, all of my clients have been with me for five to 10 years and often refer their family members and friends to both my training and medical practice. These relationships were built on trust, loyalty, respect, honesty, integrity and with a genuine concern to help people and provide value. I am always transparent and make every decision with the best intent. I feel this is what has allowed me to foster current relationships and also meet new people. I give them the respect and attention they deserve because there are no accidents in life. Everyone and everything is brought into your life for a reason.
Sam Palmisano the former CEO of IBM once said: “Relationships are built on consistent behavior over an extended period of time.” When you examine this statement thoroughly, you immediately see the words consistent and over time. There is nothing worse in both the personal and professional world than when people say and do inconsistent things. For example, a parent tells their child they can’t leave the dinner table until everyone else is finished. One day the parent enforces that rule and the next day they do not. The child is left wondering what is acceptable and what is not. The parent was not consistent and now the child does not value or trust their authority. It is the same principle as leading by example. Why would a child trust a father or mother who tells them alcohol is bad but they themselves drink it every night? In the professional world, your managers expect that you deliver results on a consistent basis. Failure to do so usually results in dismissal or termination. You need to be accountable, dependable and consistent with both your behavior and results. This is how clients begin to trust you and subsequently buy from you. People buy from who they trust and have built a solid relationship with. When I was with IBM, some of my business clients eventually became my functional medicine patients. They trusted me with their Information Technology and now they trust me with their health. You need to be consistent and always nurturing your valued relationships.