Many people can’t define what a meaningful life means to them. Instead of figuring it out, they follow whatever their friends or family are doing.
Then, they keep chasing other people’s dreams and then wonder why they feel empty and unfulfilled.
The key here is: Your version of a meaningful life is as original as you are.
We aren’t clones, so there isn’t a universal definition for a meaningful life. Everyone has distinct abilities, values, and skills. So, they must find out what they’ll do with them.
That’s why it’s vital that you realize what brings you happiness so you can create goals that’ll lead you there.
So, let’s find out what a meaningful life means to you so you can make it happen!
1. Find your custom version of a meaningful life
“It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.”
– Herman Melville
Have you ever felt inspired by someone’s lifestyle? Maybe they had an exciting career or they had interesting hobbies?
Stimulate your creativity to design a happier existence. What kind of lifestyle resonates with you? Try not to choose something friends or family members think you should do. Take the time to really think about it.
2. Your passion is part of a meaningful life
“Try not to become a man of success. Rather become a man of value.”
– Albert Einstein
When you find your passion, you learn who you are, and that’s awesome on its own! Otherwise, society will push its opinions of what you should do on you.
Do you want to help others? Have a strong family life? A short commute? Or do you wish to become an entrepreneur?
Research what career would fit you best and what you need to learn to get your foot in the door. You could take some online courses or watch Youtubes to build your skills beforehand.
3. How much money do you need to create a meaningful life?
“Whenever you see a successful person, you only see the public glories, never the private sacrifices to reach them.”
– Vaibhav Shah
However, you can’t survive on happiness alone, so you’re going to need some money. Therefore, you need to know how much you need to make. This amount depends on your location, so, check out MIT’s Living Wage Calculator. It calculates how much money you’ll need to pay bills, mortgage or rent, and so on, according to where you live.
In 2010, Princeton surveyed 450,000 people about how content they were with life. They found no increase in life satisfaction with an income above $75,000. That was 11 years ago, so let’s say it’s $100,000. So, you don’t have to be a millionaire to have a successful life.
But, are you really successful if you’re working all the time? How much are you willing to sacrifice? Friends? Family? Your significant other?
If your dream is to be wealthy, then that’s okay, but I recommend you get there by doing what you love.
4. Where do you want to live?
Next, brainstorm about where you’d like to live. You don’t have to always live in the same place unless that’s what you want. But if now, think about where you’d rather live, in a house or apartment? Also, would you rather live in the country or a big city?
Will you need a home loan or mortgage? Or would you rather rent and feel free to travel?
For example, I wasn’t happy living in a big city surrounded by millions of people. I’m an introvert, so I need lots of space. But, I’ve always lived in a major city or the suburbs. So, my husband and I moved to a small town in Colorado.
We seriously talk about how lucky we are to have found this place every day.
Others might not agree with me, and that’s fine. Everyone’s different and their goals should be too.
5. What will be your legacy?
“Our greatest fear should not be of failure… but of succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter.”
– Francis Chan
Ask yourself what kind of legacy will you leave behind? No one will remember how much money you made. Although they will remember what you did, how you made people feel, and the lives you improved.
Life is so much more than money. You can’t buy a healthy mindset, strong relationships, or a fulfilled life. How much you make only pays your bills and allows you to buy more stuff. Is this really what matters far into the future when you’re old and reflecting on life?
6. What motivates you to create a meaningful life?
“Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life–think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success.”
– Swami Vivekananda
There are two ways people gain motivation, intrinsically or extrinsically.
Extrinsic motivation comes from doing something because you’ll get rewarded for it. Like competing in a sport to get a trophy, you’ll do it, but only for what you’ll receive.
Intrinsic motivation is doing something because of the joy it brings you. For instance, some people will play a sport just because it’s fun. So, the game is the reward.
Both can be beneficial, but the best choice is to get paid for doing what you love so much you’d do it for free.
7. What will you get out of a meaningful life?
“Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.”
– Carl Bard
What is most important to you? If you could achieve anything with your life, what would it be?
So, imagine your ideal life and write it down in detail. Then plan out what you need to do to get there. Be the type of person who makes amazing things happen.
That’s what I did every time I changed my life, and it works!
In short, it’s best if you define a meaningful life instead of allowing someone else or society to tell you. Besides, no one knows what makes you happy better than you.
Hopefully, you’ve now defined what success means to you. However, how you interpret it will change. So, in a few years, make sure you’re still heading in the right direction. Then change course if you need to.
Then, plan out what you should do to create your version of a meaningful life! If you haven’t already, make sure you subscribe to Motivated Progress! Also, comment about what your definition of a meaningful life is.
Then, plan out what you should do to create your version of a meaningful life! If you haven’t already, make sure you subscribe to Motivated Progress! Also, comment below what your definition of a meaningful life is.