Finding Your Purpose Within a Russian Doll
“Purpose seems like a buzzword on the internet these days”.
With those words, Glennon Doyle Melton broke me open. Just like a Russian nesting doll.
How often have I asked myself, ‘What’s my purpose here? Why am I on this earth?”….and then promptly went on to look for a new job/outfit/online course/blog/podcast to help me answer that very question.
At this point in time in the world, many of us are wondering how does our purpose and the way we make our way in the world co-exist?
How do we change the world? We change it one person at a time. Starting with ourselves.
For so long I have thought about my purpose as a thing- a way in which I work in the world that serves others. Through my investigating and digging, I would be able to find the answer to what my ‘purpose’ is, like it was a buried treasure that I was setting out to find.
What’s that quote? There’s 2 days in your life that are most important- the day you are born and the day you figure out why.
Well, shit, talk about pressure.
And yet, as I have done the deep diving, soul work that is really hard, I have figured out more and more about myself than ever before.
Which leads me back to Glennon……
So there she was, barefoot and sitting cross legged in an arm chair on stage. Just as I had imagined and nothing like I had imagined all at the same time. I was so excited to see her live, sharing her truths in person.
When I turned the calendar on the New Year I told myself that I would go see more inspirational speakers in person this year and I started the year off on the right foot with Glennon.
You see, I love Glennon. I have long loved her blog for its humor and candor and glimpse into real-life as a woman, Mom and creative being making her way in the world.
When I opened her book, “Love Warrior” this past fall my heart broke open. I read it in the span of a day. In the school car line. In the bathtub. At the breakfast table. Late into the night and early in the morning.
Her words were like an injection of love, hate and life that I needed and craved. Her stories echoed mine in a way that I no longer felt alone and unheard. They were raw, honest and human.
She’s a cross between a writing guru, truth slinger, feminist phenom and spiritual badass all rolled into one.
She went on to say, “I see purpose to be like those Russian dolls. You know the ones that go inside each other. I believe every woman at some moment in their life stops and looks around and says, ‘who am I and how did I get here?”
That’s when I felt the tear streaming down my cheek……
2013 was the year it happened for me. I can remember thinking: “How did I get here? And what am I doing? And why the hell do I keep wearing these suits that I hate so much? Why am I taking jobs that make me feel the way I do? I don’t even know who I am anymore.”
Glennon went on to say, ‘When women reach this point in life they can start peeling back the labels on themselves like Russian nesting dolls. Until they get to that little doll all the way at the inside. That little doll- the perfect part of you that has been in there all along- that’s your purpose. That’s why you’re here”.
Each doll is a label. Mine are varied. Mom. Wife. Friend. Sister. As you twist and unlock each one and open her up, you come back to the perfect and pure part of you that was in you all along. That’s your purpose.
And there it was.
I have known all along who and what that little doll has been. She’s been sending me clues and bringing me back to life. Her light shines so bright that even when the other dolls tried to douse her light, it still made its way through the cracks. I just had to do the work to peel back the dolls.
Each of us has made our way through life adding and stacking our dolls on top of one another.
So you find yourself at a place in this world asking, ‘How can I change the world? Why the hell am I here?’
We change the world one person at a time and we start with ourselves.
We do the work to start peeling back the Russian dolls.
Ask yourself, ‘What makes me come alive?’ Pop. The first big doll twists and cracks open.
Work with a coach. Read a book. Pop. The second doll twists and cracks open.
Quiet the outside world and listen to your insight voice more. Journal. Meditate. Wander. Daydream. Pop. The third doll twists and cracks open.
We do the work until we see it. That light shining bright within. There she is, the tiny little doll, which has been bright like a beacon all along. Even when we try to douse it, it still shines on.
Your purpose has nothing to do with the job you do and has everything to do with finding your light shining bright within and bringing it to the surface for everyone to see.
That’s why you’re here.
Peel back the layers. Remove the dolls. Do the work necessary to remember the beauty that you’ve had within you all along.
Shining bright for all to see.
That’s how you change the world.