“Life seems to have no purpose”: Clues to meaning

Finding meaning is a big project, a long journey.
Maybe even a lifetime project, you could say.
And when there’s a feeling of meaninglessness, a feeling that things seem to have no purpose, there is no easy fix to the situation.
There’s no way to suddenly wake up and suddenly have everything click.
But it seems to me like there are clues that can help along the way, and they sort of point in the direction towards having something real and meaningful.
And I think to see them, it’s important to not be afraid to think small, not dismiss anything, no matter how small.
Anything that gives us a little hint of a feeling of meaning, significance, feeling like something is important to us, no matter how small it is, no matter how limited.
And anything that gives us a feeling of being alive, a feeling of that joyous celebration of aliveness, even if it is in the smallest imaginable degree: that is something that we can use as a pointer to point in a direction that may lead to deeper meaning.
A few years ago, when I was in a darker state of mind, felt that feeling of meaninglessness, just sliding along through the years to inevitable decay, while feeling like I was missing out on really living my life, I would get these little hints – I would sometimes call them little joy hints or joy windows – in which I just got a little taste of what life could be like.
Sometimes it was in seeing the behaviour of some people close to me, noticing expression of love, and people living in a good way.
Sometimes it was through these sort of atmospheric effects like a summer sunshine day.
It’s feeling that kind of sense of that kind of summer day.
It was triggering either some kind of memories of my earlier life, or even more so, memories of my earlier life where I imagined what life could be like, what would be the big future.
If you think back to when you’re very young and had some ideas about what you might want in life.
But then as we get older, we get settled into a particular way of being, and those kinds of visions tend to get covered over with daily concerns.
But I would get these hints, and they would kind of hit me.
And sometimes they would bother me, because I was being reminded of what my life could be.
And I wasn’t living that way.
I wasn’t making my life the life that was really possible.
So, when I got these feelings, these clues, these hints, I was often disturbed, and felt uncomfortable.
But it made me realize how I had become comfortable in this kind of numb state, where I was avoiding thinking about what could have been or what could be different.
I was carrying on in a sort of “don’t disturb anything” mentality of “let’s just keep things flat and moving along and not rock the boat”.
But these hints of what my life could be: they did disturb me, and made me feel that it wasn’t OK to simply be drifting along.
So at first, these were not all positive, really.
But once I started to consciously move towards finding greater meaning in my life, these little hints, these little windows, became guidelines, guideposts, for me, to give me a clue about what might be a good direction.
So that picture of a summer day, a certain kind of a feeling of a summer day, summer sunshine, summer memory: it may be connected to memory.
It may be connected to thoughts I had in earlier years.
And it’s so vague and hard to put words to it.
But it points me towards a certain attitude, a certain way of living, where I am embracing life and living life to the full.
So this kind of a vague idea is a motivator for me now, to help me to organize my life and move in that direction.
Even though I can’t say that is the meaning, that is itself meaning, because it’s just this vague thing, but because it triggers that feeling of “Oh, life can be more.
There’s something there that I want.
There’s something meaningful there for me.
There’s something that brings me a feeling of aliveness.” So it’s through clues like that that can start to shape my direction, moving towards greater meaning.
So that’s my thought for today, is when everything seems to be pointless, and there seems to be no direction, and things are just drifting, look for those tiniest clues.
What makes you get that little hit of feeling that “Oh, what if my life included that?” “Oh, there’s something in that, that it maybe recalls a memory of something that I’ve always wanted”, or something that “It brings back a memory of how maybe I imagined life could be”, or “It reminds me of some dreams that I had.” And even if the connection is not clear, those little hints: like windows of light in the darkness that just start to give us a clue.
Look for those little points of light to guide you.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *