RT x RW x G = S. Do the Right Things (use your time wisely and productively to carry out your unique mission for the benefit of others), in the Right Way (live virtuously) and through God’s Grace become a Saint (and live eternally in heaven as an added bonus). This is the Saint Builder Formula.
Simple, all problems solved. The perfect world. Heaven on earth. Take a moment to think about what your daily life would look like if everyone was determined to be their best self, to serve others and to behave virtuously at all times. Can you even image? Nope! Let the doubt and debate begin…
Some will argue that the G is all that is needed. Others that the G doesn’t exist but that the S, defined as becoming your best self is still a worthy goal for this life. Either or neither may be true. The fact is, none of us knows for sure. I do think we have common agreement that we should all strive to use our time and talent to make the world a better place. Let’s focus on that.
Most of us are in a continual search for our purpose in life. We may not think about it that way, but consider the questions you ask yourself frequently. The basics like, “why am I doing what I’m doing, am I making a difference, should I be doing something else, is it Friday yet, did I close the garage door?” You get the picture. Or maybe you just find many ways to distract yourself from asking those questions and potentially facing an unpleasant reality. So you just, what’s the latest saying, keep calm and carry on? Yeah, it’s all good.
We all know that our purpose is not to simply exist, to survive. It just can’t be. We all have an internal drive to achieve. We want to thrive. We instinctively know that we have a purpose. Without purpose what does any of it matter? We all want to matter, right?!
Recall from the last blog post that striving to be a saint (or your best self) requires at least three steps; (1) knowing your unique mission in life, (2) using the majority of your time working to fulfill that mission and (3) living virtuously. Are you playing saintball? It will help you understand how you are doing on steps 2 and 3. Of course step 2 truly requires that you know your mission, so we better discover what that is. Mission is what makes us matter.
If you already know your mission, congratulations! For the rest of you let’s do a quick mission discovery exercise. Let’s look for your mission at the intersection of your natural talents and your interests. Things you are good at and things you enjoy doing. Get is piece of paper. Draw a line vertically down the middle. Label the left side “Talents/Strengths” and the right side “Interests.” Two-minute drill time, one minute on each side, no timeouts. Use your stream of consciousness, no need to think about it much. Write everything that comes to you. No judgement, just write. Go!
Now look for matches between your talents and interests. Among other things I listed planning, organizing, setting and achieving goals, and problem solving as talents. Relevant interests included coaching and writing. The intersection became helping people develop and carry out plans to strive to become their best selves.
Here is my suggestion for you. Do the above exercise. If your mission becomes clear, great. If not, don’t worry about it. You will have random thoughts about this throughout the week. Write them down immediately and review them over the weekend. Eventually your mission will magically appear. The subconscious mind, and/or the Holy Spirit are amazing at providing direction when you are ready to receive and act upon it. Be patient. The sAint Me?! book contains more ways to discover your mission if patience runs low…but you lose saint points…patience is a virtue you know.
In the meantime, just keep doing what you are doing with a goal of continuous improvement. I once heard it said that it is easier to act your way into a new way of thinking, than think your way into a new way of acting. So act. Act naturally. Use your natural talents to do things you enjoy. Productive things that benefit others. Use your time wisely and productively. Live virtuously. Play saintball to track your results and progress. Live yourself into your true mission over time.
One last thing, I’m guessing that many of you already know what your mission is, but something is stopping you from pursuing it. Probably fear. Fear of how you will make a living. Of what others will think. Of your ability to do it well. Of how you can successfully transition to it from what you are doing now. Of what it will take to succeed. Fear not! Have faith that it will work out. It will. Believe you can do it. You can. We all can. It’s just a choice.
Let’s all choose to strive to become the saints we are meant to be. Let’s solve all the world’s problems, one person at a time, starting with ourselves. Live the formula, RT x RW x G = S. Keep asking yourself, will I be a saint or an ain’t? Godspeed!