Your Work, Your ‘Life Energy’

What is my purpose?


  • I shared some thoughts last week (Who You Are, All You Are) from a Theresa Sullivan post (LinkedIn) – on how occupation and life purpose get ‘tangled together’ too often my American workers. This week, I stumbled on to a series of posts being featured on TheHighCalling.org.   The theme: What Do You Do?

As stated by the Series Editors:

If you sit with someone long enough, included in the initial small talk (“Where do you live?”   “How do you know so-and-so?”) someone in the conversation will inevitably ask, “What do you do?”   What are we looking for when we ask that question? And what do we hear when we’re on the receiving end of that question?

What we do is important stuff in this world, and God desires greatly to be invited into what it is we find ourselves doing every day.   God takes delight in the work of our hands.   But do we sometimes confuse what we and others “do” with who we are and, especially, who we are in Christ?


  • Link to The High Calling series page (link)
  • There are 3 posts that I found particularly interesting:

What Do You Do: Finding Value in the Question No One Likes

Charity Singleton Craig ably highlights how, in the U.S., as compared to many other countries, this overused four-word question reveals how American workers too often view their personal identity, worth, and work.

  • An American journalist quoted in the post wrote: “In the U. S., we’re obsessed with people’s jobs. We want to know all about it.   We insist that you tell us what “career tribe” you’re in—white collar, blue collar, or new high-techy collar . . .  Basically, we would like everyone to walk around with their business card attached to their forehead, but since that’s a bit over-the-top, we try to glean the same information by asking questions—often lots of them—about your work”.

What Do You Do: Where We Find Our Worth

Should your worth be defined solely by your job? This post, as did my post last week (link), addresses this question well.   As well, the author (Jeanne Damoff) envisions how God feels, in her opinion, about how believers should determine their worth.

What Do You Do: Focused Answers for Unfocused Careers

If you are currently facing some mid-life issues, planning a career change, or defining yourself solely by your work, this is a great post to read.

  • Describing the ‘shifts in what I do, who I am, and where I belong, Gideon Strauss states:

“More immediately, many of us know the middle passage of life—sometime between our mid-thirties and our mid-fifties—as a time when the career dreams of our young adulthood have lost their charm or turned out to be phantasms.   These big changes bring us face to face with the deeper significance of the question because there are indissoluble connections between how we answer the question “What do you do?” and the questions “Who am I?” and “Where do I belong?

Vocation (our sense of what we are called to do in the world), identity (our sense of who we are), and belonging (our sense of connection with other human beings, communities, and places) are inextricably woven together’.  [Emphasis added]


What Energizes You? (Theresa Sullivan) 82834289_25db4ef0d4_z_LightCross_davekingAs I noted last week (blog post), Theresa Sullivan (You Need To ‘Find’ Your Passion & 4 other myths debunked) stated:

“I’m not sure where it came from, but somehow our passion and purpose get all tangled up with our occupation.   Your passion and purpose do not come formed in the shape of a particular job or career, ever.   Passion and purpose are WHO YOU ARE and what makes you, you.   Nobody’s passions add up to a single job . . . a single job role can never remotely encompass your energy and the potential you bring to the world.”

  • What does Sullivan say about some other issues?

On your value and worth

Unless you’ve got a sizable trust fund in your name, your own human capital is the most important, valuable, long term asset you’ll ever have.

On your passion

When people say they need to find their passion it makes it seem like it’s lost, or that they think it’s hiding somewhere.   It isn’t.   In fact, your passion is right in front of you, in plain sight.   What gives you energy is your passion.   What you do when you’re under no pressure to do anything is your passion.

On your ‘life energy’

What fuels your ability to earn money, love other people and simply get out of bed in the morning is your life energy.  When you do things you do for no outside reward except the satisfaction of doing them, you gain energy.  When you do other things for the sole purpose of being rewarded or recognized by someone else, you lose energy.


Related posts you might like:

 Greg Silverthorne


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