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3 Inspiring Books to Uncover Your Life's Purpose"

"Discover Your Calling: 3 Inspiring Books to Uncover Your Life's Purpose"

By Akale MandunduPublished 2 months ago 3 min read
3 Inspiring Books to Uncover Your Life's Purpose"
Photo by Florencia Viadana on Unsplash

In 2018, I made the decision to resign from my position in the publishing industry. Despite thriving and advancing up the editorial ladder, I chose to end my career prematurely. This pivotal moment left me feeling adrift, with uncertainty clouding my future path. Seeking guidance, I delved into self-help literature in search of a new purpose, grappling with doubts and regrets surrounding my choices. It felt like my life had come to a standstill, akin to career suicide. As adults, it's common to lose sight of our life's purpose, often at different stages of our lives. A study carried out by the Harvard Graduate School of Education in December 2022 revealed that a significant number of young adults aged 18 to 25, approximately 58%, experienced feelings of emptiness or lack of purpose. Half of the participants also expressed a sense of directionless in their lives, citing factors such as financial pressures, societal expectations, global uncertainty, and the impact of social media.If you find yourself resonating with these sentiments, know that you are not alone in this journey. To assist you in navigating this challenging phase, I have curated a selection of eight insightful books focused on uncovering your true purpose. These include works by a monk providing wisdom rooted in Buddhist principles, a guide to cultivating inner contentment, a narrative of overcoming adversity, a resource for managing adult anxiety, and a manual for navigating the later stages of life.While these books are not substitutes for professional intervention, they may serve as beacons of guidance in your quest for clarity and purpose. If you are facing significant challenges, it is advisable to seek support from trained professionals to ensure your well-being.

1. It’s Okay Not to Look for the Meaning of Life: A Zen Monk’s Guide to Living Stress-Free One Day at a Time by Jikisai Minami (April 2024).

Within the pages of this book, a monk imparts wisdom that diverges from the conventional. He is quick to clarify that while the essence of the text is not rooted in Buddhism, it draws inspiration from Buddhist methodologies.The monk sets the tone by recounting encounters with individuals who outwardly exude contentment but internally harbor a sense of emptiness. He keenly observes a disquiet within them, an unease he couldn't alleviate, yet he expresses hope that engaging with the book will illuminate your path to clarity.As the narrative progresses, the monk delves into a myriad of life's facets, exploring themes familiar to Buddhism such as self-improvement, embracing the uncontrollable, aspirations, emotions, and mortality. Through his reflective musings, he challenges readers to reconsider their worldview.In one poignant passage, the monk advocates for releasing the relentless pursuit of purpose, reassuring that it is acceptable to eschew the quest for "meaningfulness" in favor of simply living a life that holds value and authenticity.

2. Everyday Dharma: 8 Essential Practices for Finding Success and Joy in What You Do by Suneel Gupta.

The concept of dharma is eloquently portrayed by the author as a profound "calling," intrinsic "essence," or deeply-rooted "inner necessity" - representing a true passion or purpose in life. Within the pages of this book, he generously imparts the transformative practices gleaned from his personal odyssey, penned upon his poignant return to India following a period of forsaking his authentic aspirations. This detachment left him besieged by disillusionment, disorientation, and discontentment with his present circumstances.Central to his thesis is the notion that triumph originates from an inward source, diffusing its impact outward; assuring that this literary offering holds the key to "restoring harmony with one's existence" regardless of one's present position within it. Interwoven with enlightening narratives featuring diverse individuals finding solace in their respective dharmas, the book's unconventional wisdom presents a compelling resource for individuals in quest of a novel perspective.

3. This Book Won’t Make You Happy: Eight Keys to Finding True Contentment by Niro Feliciano, LCSW.

In her insightful article, the author offers insights on attaining contentment rather than chasing after happiness, drawing from her background as a therapist and personal encounters to provide valuable guidance. She posits that prioritizing contentment over happiness plays a pivotal role in steering our lives in the right direction. Delving into the exploration of purpose, she challenges the prevalent societal narrative that pushes individuals to seek out their purpose, relentlessly pursue happiness, and unlock their passions, cautioning against the potential pitfalls of this approach. Specifically, she emphasizes that there is no requirement to prove one's worth as a human being through these external validations.

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