On Purpose: Why Do You Get Up in the Morning?

by Dr. Christopher on June 9, 2010

Editor’s note: Hi!  My name is Chris Stepien and welcome to Humble Observer.  You can learn more about me and the PURPOSE of the site here.  Contact me at cstepiendc@gmail.com if I can be of any service to you.  Please comment at the end and let us know what you think.

 

Kramer: You’re wasting your life.
George : I am not. What you call wasting, I call living. I’m living my life.
Kramer: OK, like what? No, tell me. Do you have a job?
George : No.
Kramer: You got money?
George : No.
Kramer: Do you have a woman?
George : No.
Kramer: Do you have any prospects?
George : No.
Kramer: You got anything on the horizon?
George : Uh, no.
Kramer: Do you have any action at all?
George : No.
Kramer: Do you have any conceivable reason for even getting up in the morning? 
George : I like to get the Daily News.

In one of many amazing Seinfeld episodes, Kramer points out how George has no purpose for his life, no reason for getting up in the morning.  To know why you get up in the morning, you must clarify what you want in life (goals and desires), and what your purpose is.

As a chiropractor, patients come to me wanting to get out of pain.  Before we address pain, it is important to be aware of what a pain-free lifestyle allows someone to do.  Many people notice their pain, unaware of why they have it, and wait for it to go away.  Once the pain affects the things that they do in life such as their work or golf game, things that give satisfaction, then people seek help.  As a doctor providing a valuable service that takes effort, I would rather not give my effort and compassion unless someone knows exactly what they are getting and how it is going to help them live with more purpose.  Achieving health and wealth requires something worthwhile getting up for. 

DO WHAT YOU WANT!

Everyday, our actions are either made consciously or unconsciously.  Most of us live unconsciously, reacting to whatever the world throws our way.  By clarifying our purpose, we are able to act consciously, coming closer to achieving our desires, to live purposefully based on who we choose to be.  Does getting the Daily News inspire you enough to get out of bed?  What about earning money to support yourself?  Both are reasons, but one is driven blindly by doing the next thing in life whereas the other is driven by a clear purpose that satisfies one’s deepest desires, to be self-sufficient and free.

Understanding your desires clarifies what your daily actions need to be everyday.   We can then get back on track easily by remembering our purpose/desires when we stray from them. 

DO:  Keep a list of your purpose and goals on the wall in an area where you spend a lot of time. 

If living freely based on having enough funds to achieve your desires is of the utmost important, then it doesn’t make sense to watch television all day.  You need to provide a service in exchange for income.  Often, when we act incongruently with our vision for who we are, we feel it as negative emotions and lack of inspiration.  It is our job to listen to those emotions and act according to what inspires us, always coming back to our life purpose.

Don't be like this guy.

Don’t be like George.  Live your life purpose by spending some time thinking about what really drives you.  Is it to just be happy?  To support your spouse and kids?  To travel the world?  To participate in social activism?  To change the world?  Understanding your purpose, goals, and desires that you wish to make happen in your life will give you clarity in how to live your life.  Achieving health and wealth necessitates a larger vision for yourself.  As always, the only time to take action and make change is NOW! 

Here is why I wake up every morning (along with the actions I DO to live out my purpose).

  1. The first thing when I wake up is to enjoy nature (DO: listening to the birds whistling while in bed)
  2. To love people (DO: treating as many patients as I can with the best care I know of and empowering them to live healthy and happy lives)
  3. To be happy (DO: spending time with as many people as possible)

Having a purpose is the difference between making a living and making a life ~ Tom Thiss

Why do you wake up every morning?

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

Chris June 9, 2010 at 7:42 pm

Comment here. Do it.

Meagan June 9, 2010 at 9:44 pm

As a fellow doctor and more importantly a friend, I am very proud of you and everything you strive for. I am very excited that you have reached such clarity, I know that it took some time, and a lot of should I say, highs and “not so highs.” You have a way of making others think and challenging them in a respectful way. Keep it up, you bring out the best in everyone you encounter!

Tamara Buszko June 10, 2010 at 12:04 am

Blown away your thought are so deep and relatable. you are doing an awesome job keep up the good work. Vin is so proud of you and from what I see he has every right to be.. 🙂

DK June 10, 2010 at 3:20 am

Have you ever gotten up nice and early just to greet the sun and welcome it to the start of the day instead of it always greeting you?

DK June 10, 2010 at 3:23 am

That sun is there for you every single day. It might be nice to be there to welcome it to the start of the new day. now you do it

Alex June 10, 2010 at 10:22 am

Hey Chris,

Nick referred me to your site. Good work! Judging from your site’s content, I wanted to suggest a book to you, The Age of Empathy by Frans De Waal. He is a leading primatologist and offers some incredible insights about human nature. I think you’d really enjoy it and it could add to some of your thoughts. See you around Colt Street…

Chris June 10, 2010 at 4:03 pm

Figured it out! As I told you, thank you Meg for your butterflies!

Chris June 10, 2010 at 4:04 pm

Thank you Tamara! Speaking of purpose, seeing family is another one. I’ll ask my Dad when we can see you again.

Chris June 10, 2010 at 4:06 pm

Haha, I’m amazed at your insight DK! It does feel wonderful and I don’t plan on going back to getting up late again! It seems, our Circadian rhythms are meant to parallel sun rise and sun set, so if we aren’t sleeping when it is dark and awake when it is sunny out, our hormone levels will be off. Not everyone gets to live in Hawaii though punk.

Chris June 10, 2010 at 4:07 pm

Alex, Thank you for reading it. As you already know, I greatly appreciate your’s and Nick’s opinion because you are just so smart. I added that book to my list. Keep me updated on more of what you read!

Brian June 11, 2010 at 10:51 am

Steppy- I enjoyed reading your blog. Keep up the good work and we’ll talk soon.

Eileen June 11, 2010 at 6:13 pm

I agree with you, Chris. Our lives are a gift, and we are obliged to live them with a purpose that is unique to each of us. A life lived without purpose is wasted. Discovering your purpose can be a life long endeavor, and your purpose can change, and overlap as you discover your next purpose. Having purpose allows us the opportunity to connect with others and interact and find common bonds. By connecting with others of similar purpose, that group energy can bring about positive change, that perhaps an individual, alone, could not bring about. We are all rowing the same boat…. and those of us with purpose, are not rowing in a circle.

Chris June 11, 2010 at 8:16 pm

Giddy up Rice!

Chris June 11, 2010 at 8:19 pm

Wow. Because between us, it really is about service. And changing the world through what we know (our talents) and our vision is possible if we are persistent. I’m on your team Dr. Santipadri! I’ll be in touch.

Rachael June 21, 2010 at 11:17 am

Akil just sent me the link. The site is looking good Step! I’ll try to get you some DC followers. See you soon!

Chris June 21, 2010 at 12:28 pm

Glad that you like it Rachel! Hope that you find it helpful.

Anne July 20, 2012 at 11:35 am

I love this article!! A great reminder to appreciate nature, love people, and strive to be happy by being with people I care about (especially my Cross Fit friends and my trainer:)

Dr. Christopher July 24, 2012 at 8:25 pm

I’m happy that you enjoy it Anne. I’ve also found that Crossfit friends seem to have similar values as me. It’s interesting how hard work and health bring people together, isn’t it?

Sara April 9, 2013 at 6:37 am

What about when you don’t have any dreams or goals? What about when you haven’t found your place in this world? What about when you ask yourself “what is your purpose in life, what do you like to do?” There’s only silence and the words “i really don’t know? …. Please help.

SR May 9, 2013 at 11:30 am

Sara, I wish I had an answer for you as I am in the same boat, similar thoughts and feelings. Keep seeking and you will find your answers, I have and you may want to check out the Kingdom, Myles Monroe, Roberto Hernandez, they discuss finding your purpose. Know that you are not alone…Be well!

Dr. Christopher May 10, 2013 at 1:25 pm

Sara, you don’t need to know on such a large scale. Sometimes, it can be as simple as spending time with loved ones, or reading a book, or taking a walk outside. There doesn’t have to be this added burden on your shoulders of doing something grand or amazing. It can be simply “to be present” like many of the monks around the world.

Your thoughts?

SR, well said. “Keep seeking”. Agree completely. I will look into those sources as well. The answer that makes most sense to me is to “Seek, but enjoy the ride while seeking.”

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