OCTOBER 27, 2016
What Gives You Meaning?
What makes you
come alive? What makes you feel the surge of passion in your veins? It
has been said that having purpose and meaning in one’s life is the key
to not only thriving but to finding happiness. Would you agree?
this, I look back on living my earlier decades propelled by
contribution. At that time, I was driven by honing my skills. That was
my passion, To Do. And when I achieved what I thought were meaningful
contributions, I was happy that I had a lot to show off for my efforts.
This “doing” was closely associated with accomplishing (and the more the
better), which quickly became a way of defining myself. This belief
further became my standard for measuring other people. What have they
accomplished? What have they achieved? And the more I asked these of
people, the more I demanded from myself.
In the frenzy of
more doing and accomplishing that became an endless loop I couldn’t get
out of, life gave me successive reasons to stop. They had to be painful
to not only slow me down, but to stop completely. My mother died
unexpectedly. What I thought was a secure job ended. A loved one’s
health crises. Very quickly, my interest in doing and accomplishing
evaporated as I sought the meaning behind my world turning upside down.
I began to ask, there must be more to life than having something to show for what I did.
And thus in the midst of my midlife crisis of spirit, my search for new meaning began.
Embarking on a
new career in psychotherapy opened a new world of meaning and allowed me
to explore what it means to be human. What it’s like to hold space with
compassion. What it’s like to plough through pain and strive to find
even a sliver of a silver lining. And so at this time in my life, I have
found new meaning. It is no longer about contribution, but more so,
about Connection. Heart connections, soul connections, whatever you wish
to call it. Ironically, my losses led me to the treasure I may have
sought all my life. Real, honest human connections, and feeling part of a
sacred community of people who have in their own ways, experienced
their own struggles and losses, and have found the path back to hope and
courage. Connection has given me new meaning to what it is to feel
There could be a
reason that you are reading this, either that you are a valuable
connection I have made after my long search. I am very grateful. Or
perhaps you are searching for your own answers. Keep on, your light will
guide your way.
©2016 Copyright Margie Santos