In living a more meaning-full life, one can get a deep sense of purpose both in one’s personal and working life. Research by Steger, Oishi and Kasdan, in a paper entitled: Meaning in life across the life span: Levels and correlates of meaning in life from adolescence to older adulthood, showed that the:
“more meaning in life people reported, the greater well-being they experienced, at all life stages.”
In the words of Viktor Frankl in Man’s Search for Meaning:
“What matters, therefore, is not the meaning of life in general but rather the specific meaning of a person’s life at a given moment”.
One of the ways described by Frankl for discovering this meaning is through helping others.
Research by Fave, Brdar, Wissing and Vell-Brodrick in the paper: Sources and motives for personal meaning in adulthood, bears out that across cultures and age groups, one of the most important ways of discovering meaning is through relationships, including relationships with family. Other ways are through work, religion, experiences and pursuits.
Frankl said that in experiencing something or encountering someone we discover meaning. By intentionally turning our focus to how we create value for others, whom we impact or encounter in our work and personal lives, in these moments, we are discovering our own meaning. In this way we are able to live a more meaning-full life and enjoy a greater sense of well-being over all our life stages.
For a 30-day online, 3 min per day program on Discovering Meaning, go to: Avanoo: Calming the Storm