The Power of Purpose

If you could change one thing today, what would you do differently?

Life Reimagined is a digital platform and community that helps people rediscover what truly matters. In this video, Richard Leider, author, coach and keynote speaker, shares a poignant personal story about how purpose has an astounding impact on the health and vision of our lives. Richards explains that purpose, the reason most of us get up in the morning, is a personal thumbprint of why one lives. He adds that finding purpose helps people live longer, heal more quickly and enjoy life more. How powerful is purpose in your life? After interviewing people for nearly 30 years, Richard shares that most individuals share the same three things that they would change in their lives if they could: 1) They would be more reflective 2) They would take more risks to be authentic 3) They would strive to understand earlier in life what their purpose in life is What would you change in your life? Share with the Leadercast community in the comments section below.
If you don't have a reason to get up in the morning, you don't live as long, you're not as happy, you don't heal as quickly, and so purpose is that reason at different stages of our life for why we get up in the morning. I help people answer that question. And one of the things that really affected me the most in my passion and my engagement for this, I was teaching a seminar and someone came up -- there were about several hundred people in the room -- right up to the front of the room and handed me a slip of paper that said, "Call home now." And they said, "Your mother's had a stroke. She's in the hospital. She's in a coma. She's probably not going to make it through the night. If you want to see her again, you'd better come home right now." So I drove home. I stopped what I was doing and I drove home. It was about a four hour drive from the seminar. I walked into the Intensive Care Unit, and there's my mother gasping for breath. And I'd never been in a situation like this before, and I just kind of lost it. I just started weeping and walking around the room. And then I did what I thought was the only sensible thing to do. I just got up on the bed and I picked her up and I said, "Mom, thank you. It's time to go." And when I said "thank you," she opened her eyes and took two more breaths and died. Took her last breath in my arms. I learned more about purpose in that moment than all the research, all the training I've done, because what I learned is that everybody at the end of their lives wants a thank you, wants somehow to feel like their life is complete, that they've made a difference in the world, a small dent, you know, their thumbprint on life in certain ways. One of the things that really has informed my passion for purpose and the power of purpose is I started to interview people over the age of 65. Thirty years ago I started to do this. And I asked them if they could live their life over, what would they do differently. And there are three themes that have come through over and over, year after year, no matter who I talked to. These are the three themes. Number one, people said, "If I could live my life over again, I'd be more reflective the second time around. I'd push the pause button. I was so busy, busy, busy. Like today, everybody's busy, always going somewhere, or on their cell phones or whatever." They would stop and push the pause button and look at life in a more whole way. That's what I do with people. The second thing is they'd be more courageous. They'd take more risks. It wasn't courageous in terms of climbing mountains, or kayaking rivers. It was the courage of authenticity." I wish I would have bought my voice into my work, into my relationships more fully." And the third thing people said is, "I wish I would have understood earlier in life my own bottom line." I call that bottom line purpose. Every human being I've ever interviewed in depth, thousands of people around the world have said one thing, and that is they want their life to matter. Somehow human beings want to make a difference. They don't have to write a book or have a plaque on the wall. At the end of their lives, like with my mother, somehow they want to feel like they've made a difference. And so the work we're doing with Life Reimagined, it is common to humanity. It's in our DNA.

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