How I Found My Reason for Living

Jeremy
Jeremy
Feb 12, 2020 · 5 min read

After I graduated and worked for a few years, the satisfaction of self-fulfillment become lower and lower. I did my job well, being promoted and earning much more money every year. Actually my career development is quite good and the quality of my life becomes better and better. But I just feel unfulfilled. Thus, I start thinking about what’s wrong with me or my life. Then I come up with the following problems and solutions.

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Image from Pixabay

Why I am not fulfilled?

You can find lots of people talking about the topic of life goals or the meaning of life. They may use many theories, like Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, to explain. Yes, the theory is really awesome but it cannot improve my situation. So what’s wrong? I found that the root cause is

If I ask you to introduce yourself, can you find an answer that really satisfies yourself? Does the answer cover all of you? What things make you feel excited? What things do you really care about? If you do not understand yourself, no one and no theory can help you to find out your real dream life goal & lifestyle. Then I start searching online and spending a few days to talk to myself.

How to understand yourself

If you are reading this article while busying, I strongly suggest you pause here. Find a date and reserve at least half-day for yourself. Make sure no one can bother you to continue to read the article because you are going to have a deep talk to yourself.

First of all, I have to introduce a word to you — IKIGAI

This is a Japanese word. It means the reason for living. It consists of 4 questions. If you still feel confused after reading my article, you can search it online to get more information. So, here is what I did:

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What do you love?

This is your interest. Just write down everything you love to do. When you are doing this, you will feel happy, joy or satisfied. Also, time flies and you can’t wait for the next day to continue working on the same thing.

It doesn’t matter your interests look so useless or ordinary, like eating, sleeping or whatever. Just write it down.

What I wrote:
Learning & trying new things/ reading books/ playing with animals/ playing computer games/ doing exercise/ traveling/ watching beautiful views/ solving systematic problems

Why you love these things?

Try to think about why you feel happy when doing these things? How do you feel when you are working on it? Why these interests can fulfill you. What are the deepest needs for you?

My answer to your reference:

  1. Learning & trying new things / Reading books
    - Improve my ability -> Improve self-confidence
    - Diversified experience of my life
  2. Playing with animals
    - Cute & their funny reaction -> can make me feel relaxed
  3. Playing computer games
    - Can play with friends -> social needs
    - Feel great when I win the games -> I can out-perform others -> Improve self-confidence
  4. Doing exercises
    - Can play with friends -> social needs
    - Relax both my body & mind
  5. Traveling
    - Try new things -> Diversified experience of my life
    - Feel relaxed
  6. Watching beautiful views
    - Feel relaxed
  7. Solving systematic problems
    - Prove of my abilities & valuation -> Improve self-confidence

As you can see, I can conclude with 4 main points. They are the real needs that I need to fulfill myself.

  1. Self-confidence
  2. Diversified experience of my life
  3. Social with friends
  4. Relax

What you love to do is just a way of expression of your needs under the deepest of your heart.

What you are good at

This is simple, just write down your strengths.

What I wrote:
Programming/
Logical thinking/ Problem solving/ Fast-learning/ Knowledge integration

If you can’t write down something, you should try more things. Everybody has their own talent.

What you are paid for

Write down what you are currently paid for. And what you wish others to pay for in the future. Or the skills that you can earn money.

What I wrote:
Programming/ Writing articles/ Investment

For every skill that you are currently paid for. Think about how to improve income.

For every skill that you wish others to pay for. Think about what steps you need to achieve it. Or how other people achieve it.

What the world needs

This can be anything, ranging from universal values (environment protection/ NGO…), social trends (slash youngsters/ startup…) to industrial needs (job vacancy, industrial changes…) & personal needs (you/ your family & friends…).

Reason for the living

The interception of 4 areas is the meaning of your life

Certainly, the more overlap, the better. However, missing some doesn’t matter, just try your best to do and your life will mean something, at least to yourself.

  1. What you love + What the world needs + What you are good at
    Feel happy & fulfilled, but not wealthy
  2. What you love + What the world needs + What you are paid for
    Feel excited, but somethings feel hard to achieve the goal/ cannot achieve the goal
  3. What you are good at + What you are paid for + What the world needs
    Wealthy & being valued, but feel regretful & not fulfilled
  4. What you love +What you are good at + What you are paid for
    Fulfilled & wealthy, but the world/ others may not value your achievement.

How to start

Pick one as a starting point and broaden your skillsets. Actually, there are 3 areas that will have mutual effect: What you love, What you are good at & what you are paid for.

For the things that you love, putting time and effort turns it into your professional skills. And if you are professional, you probably can earn money from it.

The Ascent

A community of storytellers documenting the journey to happiness and fulfillment.

Jeremy

Written by

Jeremy

Focus on Life Learning, Self-Improvement & Investment | A post 90' Hong Konger and Software Engineer | Reach me at: Jeremycm.cm@hotmail.com

The Ascent

A community of storytellers documenting the journey to happiness & fulfillment. Join 150,000+ others making the climb on one of the fastest-growing pubs on Medium.

Jeremy

Written by

Jeremy

Focus on Life Learning, Self-Improvement & Investment | A post 90' Hong Konger and Software Engineer | Reach me at: Jeremycm.cm@hotmail.com

The Ascent

A community of storytellers documenting the journey to happiness & fulfillment. Join 150,000+ others making the climb on one of the fastest-growing pubs on Medium.

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