Designing Your Life – Chapter 3 Summary

[This is a part of a series I’m doing with a group of people using the “Designing Your Life” Book by Dave Evans and Bill Burnett.]

In Ch. 3 of DYL, the authors talk about what they call an ancient art of figuring out our direction in life, even if we don’t know the destination.  It’s why we’re building a compass, not a map.  

We’re trying to pay attention to the clues in front of us, and then make the best decisions possible.  One of the clues to wayfinding is how engaged and energized we are with our present life design.

My days go by really quick with my work.  I love so many different aspects of it that I enjoy.  For one, I love the mixture of being a spiritual leader in a public place.  I thought my life was going to be behind a pulpit. It turned out to be behind a tech bay and office cubicles.  

I love the mix of issues as well.  Everything from spiritual needs to life direction and leadership challenges.  I’m constantly reading, learning, and processing with employees. It’s a dream job.

I didn’t realize it was a big clue and indicator of wayfinding.  Many people think their work is a drudgery and stay in the grind.  There’s no joy or engagement. I’m not saying my work is perfect or that I don’t get frustrated, bored, or plain tired.  I do. But the bulk of my work has high engagement. And when we’re focused on discovering where the engagement and joy is with our life and work, it’ll be important to know that this tool is worthwhile.

Wayfinding also includes thinking about your purpose through your workview and lifeview.  We’re all longing for a sense of coherency with what do and believe. This is the integration of purpose:  when meaning, joy, and work become intertwined with each other. It’s a good sign that wayfinding is trying to get your attention!

Wayfinding is the ancient art of figuring out where you are going when you don’t actually know your destination…What you can do is pay attention to the clues in front of you, and make your best way forward with the tools you have at hand.  We think the first clues are engagement and energy.”

Designing Your Life, Evans and Burnett

There’s a great tool at the end of the chapter to get some clarity about when you feel engagement and joy.  While it takes a little bit of effort to work through the exercises, the payoff is that we begin to have more insight into the life that is calling to live.  There is a life you’re designing that is calling out to you. Wayfinding is trying to show you the clues to this life.  

For me, it’s being a spiritual leader in public spheres.  I love the excitement of meeting with people in their everyday work contexts.  It’s life giving!

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