Develop a vision to live a life with purpose.
The key point of “begin with the end in mind” is to begin today with the image of the end of your life as your frame of reference for everything that you do on a daily basis. Each part of your life—today, tomorrow, next week, next month—are lived according to what really matters to you.
Those who have no central purpose in life will fall prey to petty worries which lead to failure, unhappiness, and loss. Find your purpose and set out to accomplish it, and make this purpose the centralizing point of your thoughts. Make your purpose your duty and devote yourself to it - not allowing your thoughts to wonder. Even if you fail again and again in your purpose, you will gain strength of character and this will be the measure of your success. Once you begin to think with purpose you will recognize failure as a pathway to success; you will make all conditions serve you and think strong, attempt fearlessly, and accomplish masterfully. Once you know your purpose, start to plan a path to its achievement and let go of doubts and fears as they break up the straight line of effort.
Define your life’s purpose - some suggestions are as follows:
Explore what you love to do.
What energizes you?
What are you passionate about?
What comes easily to you?
What brings you happiness?
What (if anything) are you struggling with?
One way to think of this is to know that living your purpose will require hard work, however, you will enjoy this work, in fact, you will even love it! And it will energize you rather than drain you.
Come back daily and re-visit this purpose and start to align all of your activities and goals around it. Ask yourself the following question daily:
Is what I am doing right now taking me closer to my passion and purpose, or further away? And adjust accordingly.
Find a quiet space where you can be alone and uninterrupted.
Now imagine that you are at your own funeral.
there will be three speakers at the funeral:
a family member, a close friend, and a colleague.
Now ask yourself (and answer):
What is it that you would want each of these people to say about you? About your life? What kind of husband, father, mother, son, daughter will you have been? What kind of friend? What kind of work associate? What character and contribution do you want them to have seen in you? What difference do you want to have made in their lives?
Write down your thoughts.
Come back and visit these thoughts daily for the next 20 days (and change, adapt, and add to them as the days go on and you think about this more and more).
Your answers will be a guide to your vision and values.
And they may well be different to what you thought they were before this exercise.