I am on a quest. It’s a full-on, can’t be stopped, no-holds-barred quest to get you to live your best life.
But, I’m not going to tell you how to live your best life. That isn’t for me to say. What I am going to do, however, is demand that you ask more of yourself.
It starts with a simple question:
What’s your calling?
Damn, that feels like a big question, right? It feels like we should have — insert whispered voice of reverence here — a big answer.
Here’s why: we conflate the idea of calling with some holier-than-thou idea, written large and lofty, assuming that if we aren’t of service to someone else, it’s not a true calling. We’ve gotten it wrong. And, we’ve gotten it wrong for hundreds of years. We’ve gotten it wrong since before the Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock.
You see, those Pilgrim Puritans cared about two things: freedom to make money and freedom to practice their religion. But the problem with being a Puritan is that it comes with Puritanical Guilt, guilt that tells you that enjoying the spoils of making money will send you to hell. So, the Pilgrims learned about charity: make money, give some away to help the poor, and pave your way to heaven. Charity was defined as salvation for the rich, not salvation for the poor.
And charity became intertwined with this religious idea of having a calling. And we were sent down the false path that you are either a money-maker or a do-gooder.
It’s a false choice.
Not only can you do both — there are plenty of great careers in the nonprofit sector — but that you can have a calling that isn’t just about curing cancer or feeding the poor or housing the elderly.
Your calling is just that: YOUR calling. It only has to be right for you.
Your calling may be buying a Maserati or owning a beach house or being the first in your family to live debt free. And, that’s okay. It only has to matter to you. It has to be a thing you care about. You can’t be insatiably hungry for someone else’s goal. There’s just no way you’re gonna wanna get out of bed every day, over and over and over again, to fulfill someone else’s desire.
So, now, let me ask you the question again. What would it look like if you were living your very best life? What’s YOUR calling?