First Things First — Get Back to Basics. Clarify the Purpose and Direction for Your Life and Career

I tell my career mentor members that sometimes it’s good to go back to the beginning.  Clarifying the purpose and direction for your life and career should be the first step in your career success journey.  I discuss it in detail in several of my books: Climbing the Corporate Ladder, Straight Talk for Success, Your Success GPS, Success Tweets. In today’s post, I’d like to revisit the idea of clarity of purpose and direction.

To develop your personal clarity of purpose you need to do three things.  First, define what success means to you personally.  Second, create a vivid mental image of you as a success.  This image should be as vivid as you can you make it.  Third, clarify your personal values.

I have a quote from Brad Swift of the Life On Purpose Institute ( hanging in my office…

“Taking a bold standing for living on purpose starts by knowing your purpose with crystal clarity — knowing it so well that if someone woke you up at 3:00 in the morning and asked you what your life purpose is, you’d be able to tell them.  And if someone who knew you well heard what you said, they’d realize that your life was a true and authentic reflection of that purpose.”

Brad makes two great common sense points here.  First your clarity of purpose has to be deeply ingrained in your psyche.  It has to be part of who you are.  Second, you have to live your clarity of purpose 24/7/365.  This takes commitment; commitment to determining your life’s purpose, and commitment to living it.

My life’s purpose is helping as many people as I can others create the successful lives and careers that they want and deserve.  I take immense satisfaction out of seeing others learn, grow and succeed.  In another life I might have been a teacher or athletic coach.  In this life, I help people succeed in business.

If you were to wake me at 3:00 in the morning, shine a light in my face and ask me for my life’s purpose, I’m sure I would say, “helping people create successful lives and careers.”  It’s that much a part of me.  My elevator speech begins, “Hi, I’m Bud Bilanich.  I’m a career mentor.  I help people create successful lives and careers by applying their common sense.”

What is your purpose in life?  Is it deeply ingrained in you?  Have you even thought about it?  Clarity of purpose and direction comes first in my success model.  I always suggest to my coaching clients that they think of their purpose as their mission in life – why they are on this earth.  I suggest they think of their direction as a medium term goal – something that they will accomplish in the next five or so years.

For example, as I’ve said, my purpose is to help other people create successful lives and careers by applying their common sense.  My direction has changed recently.  My vision for the next five years is to build an internet based coaching and career mentoring business.  That’s where I’m going.  It’s also why I write this blog and my books.  It’s why I send my subscribers daily success quotes.  It’s why I tweet and post regularly to my career mentor Pinterest board.

Your direction defines what you do every day.  It should reinforce your life purpose.  Clarifying not only you purpose but your direction gets you to the point where the way you live your life is a true and authentic reflection of that purpose. That’s why both clarity of purpose and clarity of direction is important.

Clarity of direction helps you determine what you are going to do every minute, every hour, every day.  If your direction is congruent with your purpose others will notice.  More important, you will be living your purpose and creating the successful life and career you deserve.

The career mentor point here is simple common sense.  Successful people clarify their purpose and direction in life.  They have a clear understanding of what success means to them and an image of themselves as a success.  Everything they do is consistent with their clarity of purpose.  Their day to day actions move them closer to their vision of success, and are consistent with their clarity of purpose.  When you clarify your purpose and live it, you will hardly ever procrastinate or find yourself going off on tangents.  You’ll be laser focused on living the life that is important to you.  What’s your clarity of purpose?  Are you living it?

That’s my take on clarity of purpose and direction.  What’s yours?  Please take a few minutes to share your thoughts with us.  As always, thanks so much for reading my musings on life and career success.


PS: You can download a free copy of Success Tweets at  Why don’t you go there now, while you’re thinking of it?



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