Why Is It Important to Live a Meaningful Life?

01/21/2016 06:04 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

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Why is meaning important to life?

Because the energy invested in meaning allows you to connect with your deeper purpose. The more you engage with meaningful life, not only does it grow with time, it also provides you with a happy, fulfilling life. This is very different than pleasurable life that is transient, current, and illusory.

Given our culture of consumerism, we regularly become a target of brain wash and "propaganda" of cultivating an hedonistic life instead of a meaningful life. This is because a meaningful life requires planning, ownership of our actions, and responsibility for the consequences of our choices. As a result, a meaningful life can be demanding and is often a stressful one. It is not as accommodating as a pleasurable life. Purposeful life requires us to be patience, to delay our gratification and to think long-term, which is against our second (acquired) nature, but a big part of our true nature.

Also, a meaningful life connects people to a larger sense of purpose and value, making positive contributions, not only to our personal and spiritual growth, but also to society and the human civilization as a whole. As a result, a meaningful life is one that guides wise actions, giving a sense of constructive direction.

If you are able to know where you are, where you want to be, and what you need to do to get there, you are in the best position to have a fulfilling life. Life full of purpose.

David Deida in his book Knowing Your Purpose -- Way of the Superior Man wrote:

"As you open yourself to living at your edge, your deepest purpose will slowly begin to make itself known. In the meantime, you will experience layer after layer of purposes, each one getting closer and closer to the fullness of your deepest purpose. It is as if your deepest purpose is at the center of your being, and it is surrounded by concentric circles, each circle being a lesser purpose. Your life consists of penetrating each circle, from the outside toward the center."

Davide Deida added: "As you dissolve each layer and move toward the center, you will more and more be living from your deeper purposes, and then your deepest heart purpose, whatever it is, in every moment."

The key is to live the best you can in the present moment. In other words, it is to actualize your purpose and mission in the present rather than postponing it into the future. If for example, you want to write a book, engage yourself in that project today. Even though you have to work, spend time with your family and kids as well as having other responsibilities, make your best effort to allocate time to write your book, even if it is for only a short time every day. It can be an hour or even few sentences a day. You need to know that you were able to squeeze time and effort to do what you love and fulfill your purpose. This is clearly not easy, but you have to tap in to your creative discipline and time management to find a way to balance your life while incorporating within it your meaningful project. A good indication that you are acting in that way is when in the end of the day, before you go to sleep you can say to yourself, "I could not have live my life today with more courage and creativity to get closer to complete my project."

As you can see working with purpose in never ending journey. It never stops, but purpose always connects you with the present moment and let you dig deeper into yourself to continue finding meaning and purpose.

Each purpose, each mission, is meant to be fully experienced and lived, to the point where it becomes boring, empty and useless. Then it should be discarded. This is not sign of failure as many people mistakenly think, but rather it is a sign of growth and evolution. A sign that signals you that you fulfilled one purpose and ask you to move to the next project, next mission and next purpose.

Find your purpose and allows it to bring you new heights.

  • Moshe Ratson (MBA, MS MFT, LMFT) is a Licensed Couples/Marriage Family Therapist and Executive Coach based in New York City.

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