Living with Purpose and Living Your Purpose

Table of contents for Living with Purpose

  1. Living with Purpose and Living Your Purpose
  2. Creating Your Purposeful Life Environment

Reading Level: Leisurely

Do you feel that you are living the purpose for which your life exists and enjoying achieving it with passion?   Or do you feel that you are powerless, caught in a habitual life that you do not want?

This past week my brother mentioned to me a book by Dawna Markova. He said she is known for encouraging people to surround themselves with the environment, people, and activities that bring energy into their lives, rather than drain energy from their lives. I have read articles by other authors on that topic, but none by Dawna, so I decided to Google her and find out more. Dawna Markova, Ph.D, is an internationally known speaker and author who encourages people to” learn from our wounds, find our gifts, celebrate our values, and live our dreams to live on purpose and with passion.” One of her most popular books is, “Wide Open: On Living With Purpose and Passion.” She has many other great sounding books, as well as a blog, which you can find at  .

I also came across an article of Ms. Markova’s called, “Landscape of the Soul.”  She has a great illustration of how one can be trapped in an unfulfilling life of habit. She tells of a science experiment in which baby fish were raised in a small glass tank that was inside a larger glass tank of adult fish. Once the baby fish were grown, the small tank was removed, but the baby fish still would not swim beyond the place where the walls of the small tank had once been. The habit was more real than reality, even though reality provided them with more freedom.

Are you living in a way that develops that best of who you are?

Ms Markova wisely instructs to give thought to the kind of environment you need to bring out the best of the person that you are so that, when you are in a needy, demanding environment, you will not lose your sense of self or purpose. Rather than accept the environment you have been given, or the habitual lifestyle you are in, contemplate and decide what environment, people, and activities you need so that you are living your life’s purpose and, thus, able to live life passionately because your life is purposeful.

Develop a standard for your life by asking yourself what conditions bring out the best in you and free you to be you.

Ms. Markova developed this list that she describes as her “No Matter Whats” for her life as an example for you to write your own and start living your life with purpose. Again, this is just an excerpt from the article footnoted below. Please read the full article as well as take a look at Dawna’s site and books. Her challenges are beneficial to everyone.

It is my hope that reading my “no matter whats” will help you tap into your own:

No matter what, I need to be living and working in a spacious natural environment that encourages me to expand.
No matter what, I need to be living and working in an environment that stimulates, pleases, and enlivens my physical being.
No matter what, I need to be moving at a rhythm that allows my body, soul, and heart to be in alignment.
No matter what, I need to work both as a part of and apart from the larger community. I need to work with my family. Work has meant dividing me from them for so many years.
No matter what, I need a human atmosphere that constantly challenges me to be sane, thoughtful, wholesome, and present in the moment.
No matter what, I need to work in a climate that is interdependent, where the norm encourages us to use each other’s strengths so no one of us has to carry more than our part.
And lastly, no matter what, I need to work in a creative atmosphere that encourages us to let die what is finished and foster new life that is trying to emerge.

Now it’s your turn, dear reader. What are the influences, activities, and people that cause you to shine?
Describe the environment that fosters your wisdom, and helps you to bring the best that is in you out to the rest of us who are waiting.(1)

In Part 2 of this post, I’m going to use Dawna’s list as a springboard for my own list of “No Matter Whats” for living my life with purpose. I trust both these examples will encourage you to write your own list and change your environment to one that enables a fulfilling life.


1. Excerpts from Landscape of the Soul, Dawna Markova.
2. See Dawna Markova’s books and blog at

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