What is a true calling?
A true calling is a career or walk of life that a person feels compelled or meant to do. Finding meaning in life is something people often spend a lot of time contemplating. Or some individuals may feel the passion so strong that they know quickly in their heart what they were born to do. Others may feel that they have no true calling at all, not adhering to the notion of fate. But it may be wrong to assume that those jumping from job to job are seeking their calling and failing. In fact, these individuals may be multipotentialites, interested in many different careers. Whatever words you choose to describe your purpose, most of us are seeking it in one way or another.
- People seek their true calling to find purpose or fulfillment in life
- The journey to finding a true calling is unique to the individual
- A true calling may not be a traditional career
- You may discover your true calling in life through trying different careers, continually learning, being open to new opportunities, self-reflection, discovering your values, exploring your interests, investing in your passions, and asking others
Why do people seek their true calling?
People seek their true calling to find purpose or fulfillment in life, or maybe a way to explain why they are on this earth. As each individual is unique, so is the path and meaning of their true calling. Your true calling may not be a traditional career. Some people may be called to be travelers, humanitarians, volunteers, or parents. Whether you choose to call it your purpose, your true calling, or just the reason you wake up in the morning, everyone has a reason for living.
Where do people search for their true calling?
Since a successful career is idealized in our society, this is often where people start. However, even if your true calling is to be a teacher, you still may not feel fulfilled if the school isn’t the right fit. When the traditional careers don’t work out some individuals may go on a soul-searching quest. They may travel the globe or volunteer in another country. Another popular avenue for seeking a true calling is turning to the arts, such as music, photography, or painting.
When do people usually find their true calling?
Younger people are usually more apt to change careers, with individuals being less likely to change careers as they get older. This does not mean that people do not find their true calling later in life. After all, your true calling may not be your career. Certain life events may also trigger a realization of your true calling. A death in the family may inspire you to take up medicine, an end to a relationship may encourage you to take up travel blogging, or a vacation may ignite an old passion. Each individual’s journey is unique and so is your true calling.
How do you find your true calling in life?
1. Try out different career paths
Finding what works for you can take some time, so why not try out a few different career paths? Not only will this give you a wider range of experience, but you may stumble across an unexpected opportunity. For those multi-potentialites, embrace the fact that there may not be just one career for you.
Even if you don’t want to experiment with different careers, you can still commit to continual learning in your life. This could be as simple as signing up for the next course, conference, or workshop at work, or reading the latest leadership book at home. You gain perspective by experiencing new things and broadening your knowledge and skills.
3. Be open to opportunities
When a new opportunity presents itself, no matter how out-of-the-box it may be for you, consider it. Take a moment to think about what it would be like to accept the offer. Sleep on it if you are able to, or take some time to think it over before immediately rejecting the idea.
Your true calling is often referred to as your inner calling because it is an internal feeling that drives the passion for our purpose. Self-reflection, therefore, is integral in finding your true calling in life. Take time to yourself to think about what brings you joy and be honest about what you are drawn to. Occasionally, we shy away from certain interests because we don’t think others will see value in them.
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5. Discover your core values!
Through self-reflection and exploring different opportunities, you will discover your core values. These are the principles that drive your daily decision-making and are what guide your moral compass. Core values can change over time, just as people change over time, so don’t be afraid to re-evaluate these. A value that you held paramount when you were sixteen, may no longer be at the top of your list when you are thirty.
6. Explore your childhood interests
Interests that you had as a child may have been thrown to the wayside if they didn’t align with a typical career. It might be a good opportunity to revisit these interests and see if anything is sparked. It could be as simple as volunteering at the local animal sanctuary or joining a local theatre group.
7. Invest in your passions
Invest in your passions and things that bring you joy. As a society that expects immediate gratification, it can be hard to invest in something that doesn’t see instant returns. Taking a dancing or pottery class may not make you a dancer or a potter tomorrow, but if it brings you joy, then it may be worth pursuing.
8. Ask others
When in doubt, ask a trusted friend, colleague, or family member. You may be surprised what you learn from someone else’s perspective. For whatever reason, sometimes we aren’t always able to see our own strengths or gifts. An insightful friend that knows you well may be able to give you a gentle nudge in the right direction.