Three Ways I Found Purpose

 In Mental Health

For many of us, purpose equals motivation. For Gen Z, this is especially true—our surveys and interviews with young people show a significant tie between purpose and mental wellness. As young people navigate their own beliefs, values, and personal meaning in life, they often seek out experiences and practices to help them figure out their purpose, and lean on family, friends, and trusted adults for support and accountability along the way. Below, our Springtide Ambassador Lauren shares three ways she’s found purpose in her life.  

Have you ever found yourself wondering about your purpose, and what guides it? I’m sure most people have. Although my perspectives on purpose have changed through the years as I grow up, here are three pieces of purpose I’ve found in my life that have made me see myself as part of a larger world, which has positively contributed to my mental health.  

First, people. From friendships to family, teachers, coaches, and even people who may not even know I exist, the people in my life have helped me find purpose. I’ve found that finding real friendships with people who make you feel valued and loved produces a sense of purpose. I also have teachers and coaches who have held healthy expectations for me, such as getting a good grade, reading more, hitting a personal record in track, or just not procrastinating. These expectations and goals give me purpose, help me have a more positive and productive lifestyle, and result in better mental health. I’ve also found purpose through inspiration from celebrities, artists, pro athletes, poets, and writers. Even though we don’t know each other, I look up to these people, and I’ve found purpose and motivation through them. 

I’ve found purpose through my faith. Faith and spirituality can look very different for everyone, but I believe it to be a common guide for purpose. Having something in your life that feels much bigger than you can sound scary, yet I personally think it makes me feel more at peace. When I found my faith and worked on deepening it, I felt a bigger sense of wholeness. Whatever faith and spirituality may look like for you, if you reflect on it and allow it to guide you, that is a great way to find purpose. 

I also found purpose by simply being me. Focusing on my talents, passions, and mindset have helped me discover who I am and my potential. You are the one person in your life who you can rely on. You are your own power for change. A quote I heard once that stuck with me: “Finding a purpose in life can be difficult if you don’t work on yourself first.” When I take time for myself to journal, read a book, take a walk, or watch a show, I’ve found clearing my mind and tending to self-care can help deepen my purpose.  

Connecting with people, growing in my faith, and valuing myself are helping me find a bigger purpose, and hopefully guiding me onto the path where I can contribute to a world larger than myself. 

Lauren Scott is a member of the Springtide Ambassadors Program.

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