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  • Writer's pictureMelanie Reinersman

Purpose: Everyday Living Made Clear

Updated: Aug 18, 2022

Do you help your clients reflect on the purpose of their career? Do you reflect on your own sense of purpose in your daily work? The reasons behind these reflections are as varied as the tools available to aid the process. Purposeful reflection will take effort and courage, and may even be painful at times, but can be a labor of love – love of oneself and others. This will make everyday living clear. ~ Melanie Reinersman,

Photo by taufiq triadi on Unsplash

FOCUS ON: Living Purpose at Work

Workers want more purpose from their jobs than they are currently getting, according to an on-going study by McKinsey. This translates to lower energy, satisfaction, health, and resilience as compared to those that get as much purpose from work as they would like. Not surprisingly, those that want more purpose also experience less pride and engagement in their work. There are differences between front line workers and leaders. Read the full exploration of the McKinsey report.

FOR PRACTITIONERS: Using a Purposeful Narrative Approach with Millennials

Helping clients, particularly Millennials, understand a deeper purpose may address the problem of burnout. One's higher purpose may be explored through a narrative approach, such as journaling. The counselor can then paraphrase, summarize, and ask clarifying questions to understand deeper motivations, which are then reiterated throughout the counseling process. Read more about this approach in Career Convergence.

FOR PRACTITIONERS: Identifying Values and Finding Purpose

The benefits of having a purpose to waking up and navigating each day can be rooted in living and articulating values. Strategies for discovering values include creating a collage, exploring frustrations, connecting with personal, meaningful movies or books, or selecting prized possessions that show love. Read more from PsychCentral.

YOUR LIBRARY: Books on Purpose in Work and Life

Most people are familiar with Rick Warren's book, The Purpose Driven Life (the 10th anniversary edition was released in 2013) or the classic book on the search for meaning by Victor Frankl. There are many others, some based on science (e.g., Victor Strecher: Life on Purpose: How Living for What Matters Most Changes Everything ) and some written in a self-help style (e.g., Martha Beck: Finding Your Own North Star). Most are written for the purpose (aha!) of aiding the reader, whether it be a career professional, a new worker, a retiree... Read a list of ten books on purpose in work and life.

TOP TEN: Purposes for Becoming a Career Counselor

While people have their own reasons for pursuing a specific career, there are several commonly identifiable reasons for becoming a career counselor. The obvious ones include the desire to make a difference and to help people live better lives. For some, the purpose behind their choice to be a career counselor may be the desire to provide a safe space for vulnerable people. Others want to learn about client's lives so as to create helpful treatment options. Still others find purpose in celebrating clients' accomplishments, breakthroughs, and coping strategies as part of a genuine relationship. Read many more purposes and see which you connect with.


“Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction.” ~ John F. Kennedy
“Hard work is painful when life is devoid of purpose. But when you live for something greater than yourself and the gratification of your own ego, then hard work becomes a labor of love.” ~ Steve Pavlina


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