If you’re been keeping up with our blog series, you’ve now completed three petals of the “What Color Is Your Parachute?” Flower Exercise. The center of the flower is the fourth petal: What Is Your Purpose in Life?
This gets deep and introspective to consider your purpose in life, but it is not intended to be intimidating. To begin the exercise, there are 9 spheres of influence that enhance human existence.
In order they are:
1. The Sphere of the Senses – Enhancing artistic beauty in the world such as art, music, or performance.
2. The Sphere of the Body – Enhancing physical health such as medical care, food or clothing for those in need, or safety in the community.
3. The Sphere of our Possessions – Enhancing respect and value for possessions either as a creator or steward.
4. The Sphere of Will or Conscience – Enhancing justice in the world.
5. The Sphere of the Heart – Enhancing and sharing love and compassion towards others in the world.
6. The Sphere of the Entertainment – Enhancing the experience of others through entertainment.
7. The Sphere of the Earth – Enhancing the protection of the earth, animals, and exploration of the world.
8. The Sphere of the Spirit – Enhancing faith, compassion, or forgiveness in the world.
9. The Sphere of the Mind – Enhancing knowledge or truth in the world.
While there may be a tendency to want to place one sphere above another for the value it’s important to understand they are all valuable. In your own life, you experience the fruits of people skilled in each sphere and each one has its own unique value.
You might look at these comparisons and it easily comes to you which area you prefer. If it doesn’t, try writing about what you see as important and enjoyable for the different spheres. Don’t worry if one stumps you – that means it wasn’t the one you most wanted to work in, to begin with. After you’ve given some consideration to those you’ve written, you can rank and drill down into a preferred sphere.
For example, within the sphere of will or conscience, you might find you want there to be more equity in education and you’ll want to seek out jobs that advance educational opportunities. Or you might find you most enjoy scientific discovery and you want to work in a research setting in a science discipline. This exercise is not designed to give you a specific vocation, but to put you in a broad industry space so you can research how other petals might connect to a specific job. It can help define the types of organizations you want to join by whether they offer value in spheres that are important to you.