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How to Add Meaning to Your Life: 13 Steps with Pictures

Posted on: December 3, 2021 by in Sober living
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To summarize, it appears that centenarians adopt a positive mindset and psychological traits and value their social relationships. These factors may contribute to a longer, more meaningful life and protect against illness and depression. Fostering interests and hobbies is another way to find meaning in your life, buttressing against negative feelings and thoughts. People who report fewer social connections, loneliness, and ostracism also report lower meaningfulness (Williams, 2007).

I had a career I’d always dreamed of – as a journalist for a major news organisation. I was based in the Houses of Parliament and had been to Downing Street, the White House, Afghanistan and Iraq. I was in my mid-30s, owned my own flat, had a broad social circle and went on holiday wherever I pleased. I was single, but was sure my romantic life would work itself out. Gaining an understanding of the nature and use of your strengths is one way to build your meaning and is backed by research. Join 550,000+ helping professionals who get free, science-based tools sent directly to their inbox.


Simply put, the love triangle fell completely flat in My Life With the Walter Boys, mostly due to the characters being so unlikable and unworthy of becoming invested in, and the Season 1 finale only made it worse. Jackie Howard’s life is disrupted by a freak accident, she is ripped from her home and has to start over on a ranch in Colorado, with her guardian and a family of 12 boys. “It’s not worth your physical or psychological health or your important relationships [to stay],” Dr. Sullivan says. The effects of working too much are real, and burnout is so common that the World Health Organization (WHO) has classified it as a syndrome resulting from “unmanaged workplace stress.” Achieving a work-life balance can take, well … Another habit worth adopting in the new year is meal prepping, which ensures that you always have healthy options on hand.

how to create meaning in life

All three, Significance, Purpose, and Coherence, work together to help you experience life as meaningful. Your life feels worthwhile when you are doing something important with it. And you know what you should be doing with your life when you better understand who you are and can make sense of the world around you. We hope that after reading this article you will also embark on this journey to find meaning in your life. We shared many different strategies you can implement when looking for that ultimate answer, and we sincerely hope that when you have found your ikigai, you will make changes to actively live that life of meaning. If some of the strategies do not work for you, try another suggestion from the list.

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I could decide I want to become a professional dancer, as I love to dance. My vulnerable achilles, inability to pick up choreography and general ancientness will have their say in the matter. Conversely, we may decide a particular resolution sounds too much like hard work – forgetting that growth is rarely comfortable. Rubin insists there is no dilemma in prioritising our own happiness. “Research shows happier people are more interested in the problems of the world and other people,” she points out.

He is a researcher, author, and teacher, and is a world expert on meaning and purpose and globally sought-after speaker and facilitator. Maybe those five minutes you spend writing on a cocktail napkin will help you commit to a new path. Maybe saying to yourself that you will stop holding yourself back helps to uplift your strength of hope and helps you envision a better future. We can’t give you meaning itself or even say what the ultimate meaning of your life should be—in fact, no one can do that, not even YouTube gurus or best-selling authors. But we can offer you something important—we can explain what the latest science has revealed to help you discover meaning. Most important is to find a meaning that makes sense to you and recognize that this meaning might change as you go through different stages of your life.

Existentialism and the struggle for meaning

For Camus, as with his contemporary Jean-Paul Sartre, existentialism concerns itself with the uniqueness of the human condition (Sartre, 1964). how to create meaning in life According to the existentialist formula, life has no inherent meaning. We have free choice and, therefore, choose our values and purpose.

  • Be careful not to put too much pressure on your purpose and function, though.
  • I hope these 4 basic pillars to finding meaning in life has helped you to let go of your pursuit of happiness and search for meaning instead.
  • Fostering healthy relationships — and getting rid of those that are no longer healthy — can contribute to the meaning in your life.
  • Here are some of her recommendations based on her research on purpose.
  • Philosophy is often unhelpful, offering abstract ideas such as Aristotle’s human function or Kant’s “highest good” that are hard to comprehend, let alone put into action.

Ask yourself where and how your top character strengths correspond with each of the three components of meaning mentioned earlier—Significance, Purpose, and Coherence. For example, you can use your character strength of Social Intelligence to validate another person’s sense of Significance. Use your character strength of Curiosity to uncover your Purpose and Bravery to act upon it. Use your Perspective to view your life as a whole, your life story, and important memories, to develop more Coherence.

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