5 Questions To Gain More Clarity On Your Life Purpose


I was lying in the observation bed in the hospital, being scanned by a doctor in his mid-forties. He was looking at the moving image on the computer, with a serious look. He focused on one point on the screen with an intense look as if he was trying to see through the skin.

“There is something here that does not feel right.” He spoke gently with his eyes still fixing on the screen, “there seems to be lump here . I suggest you go for another scan”.

“Was it really bad?” I asked.

“Difficult to say. You may have to get it removed by operation, just to be on the safe side.” He then asked me to get up and hand me the report with a long footnote.

On the way home, I started to play the worst case scenarios in my mind. What if I got cancer? What if it couldn’t be cured? What if I only had one year, or even 6 months to live? If this turned out to be true, I would regret that I didn’t have the courage to follow my heart to do the things that I truly wanted to do in my life time.  And I knew that I could’t live with such regrets.

Luckily, it turned out the doctor made a mistake this time. However, the realisation that life is too short to not live as I truly want hits me hard. It allows to me see things very differently from that day and take actions to make changes happen in my life.

Have you ever asked yourself these questions that may help you gain a different perspective and gain more clarity on you want to do with your life:

1. If you only had 6 months to live, would you still be doing what you are doing today? 

Death is part of life. We only know life better with the existence of death. When we are young, death seems so remote to us until we lose someone we love. Most of us are afraid of death – for death could be scary when we had never been truly “alive”, when we would have regrets on our death bed that we hadn’t had the courage to live the life to the fullest and to follow our own path. If we had truly come alive during our life journey and enjoyed the journey with our love and appreciation, death wouldn’t be that scary and would just be as natural as birth.

2. If you were the only person on the earth, what would you do?

How many things you do everyday is to please others, to manage others’ perception of you, to compare with other people, or to meet the expectations of others?  It gets worse when “others” are not even the people we love, respect or want to become.

Have a think about what would you do if you were the only person on the earth, where there were nobody else to please, satisfy or compare to.  If you would love to dance in that world, then you are made to be a dancer. If you would love to write, then you are made to be a writer.  Honour this unique gift you have within you, because you are here to live your own life and not others’.

3. What would you do if you weren’t afraid? 

The fear of failure, the fear of success, the fear of the unknown and the uncertain – We all have fears that may hold us back but can also make us stronger. Fearlessness is not about the absence of fear but the bravery to do it anyways.

Use fear as your internal guide, as fear tells us what we have to do. As Steven Pressfield said in his book “The War of Art ” – “the more scared we are of a work or calling, the more sure we can be that we have to do it. The more fear we feel about a specific enterprise, the more certain we can be that the enterprise is important to us and to the growth of our soul.”

4. If money were no object, what would you do?

Have you ever said to yourself: ” I can’t do this because I need to pay the bills”, “I will quit my job when I get to the next bonus”, ” I am not sure if the financial side of things will work out if I start my own business”…..It is like a pair of “golden handcuff” put on us that prevent us from doing the things we love.

What would you do if money were no object? Money itself is not good or bad, it is simply a token of value for exchange. If you do things you love with your passion and soul, it will show up in your work and will bring value to others. In return, people will naturally give back for the value you created, whether it is money, friendship, love, respect,and etc. If you simply do things that you don’t like for the sake of money, it is very rare any real value is created during the process, plus you could end up doing things you don’t like for the rest of your life.

5. Imagine you were at your own funeral and were surrounded by your beloved family, friends and colleagues, what would you like them to say about you and what difference would you like to have made in their lives?

Reflecting with the end point in mind can be a powerful tool to gain more clarity on what is truly important to you.  Everyday we go through life with our ever growing to-do list and it is so easy to get lost of the big picture of who you want to become and what difference do you want to make in the world.

If you have clear answers to these questions, you might find it easy to make decisions in daily life, whether it is about choosing your career, work-life balance , deciding which project to prioritise or whom you want to spend time with.

Now it’s your turn.  I would love to hear from you in the comments below – have you found any of these questions helpful in gaining more clarity in your life purpose and can you share your answer to any of these questions? Or do you have your own list of questions that get you those “aha moment”?

Lots of love and until next time,


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4 Responses to “5 Questions To Gain More Clarity On Your Life Purpose

  • The only thing you will not regret doing, is to spend time with the loved ones.

    • Indeed. Your comment also reminds me that even when we are physically with the loved ones, our mind may wander to somewhere else. I always remind myself to be fully present and in the “here and now” especially when spending time with loved ones.

  • So that’s why you decide to quit banking?

    • Part of the reasons but not all. Have been thinking about doing something different for a while. The incident lent me what I called “existential lens” to put things in perspective, which gave me the extra push to take the leap of faith!

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