What to Do When the Dark Clouds Appear in a Life On Purpose?

I’m depressed…and I have been for a few days now. Are you surprised to hear that? I’m a bit surprised to find I’m sharing it, but it’s the truth. It started on Monday and I’m still feeling a little of the residual effects here on Thursday as I write this.

And that’s what today’s ‘article/rambling on purpose’ is about. What happens when a ‘person on purpose’ gets depressed.

Read on at your own risk. This may be raw and real…and yet it is my intention to leave you and me inspired by the end.

LIVING ON PURPOSE: What to Do When the Dark Clouds Appear in a Life On Purpose?
Yes, I do get down…sometimes way down, though not nearly as often or as far down as in the past before I knew my purpose. But it does happen, and in fact, happened this past week.

I awoke on a drizzly Monday morning in a sour mood. I went through my morning purpose practices of reading spiritual material, taking my walk as I recited my Purposeful Prayer, and returned….in a sour mood.


I had a couple of calls scheduled including a coaching session with one of my clients. I called and rescheduled it all…and declared the day a ‘purposefully pampering’ day for myself. That helped…for a little while, but still, on Tuesday I was still off.

It was still overcast and rainy on Tuesday. It has been months since we’ve had two days of rain in a row. I began to think that perhaps I suffer from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). I kept asking myself — “Why am I feeling so down?” And that only led to me getting further down on myself. “I’m a Life On Purpose Coach. I ‘shouldn’t’ be so down for so long, etc.” I trudged through the day, luckily a light day without a lot of commitments.

Wednesday was better. The weather was marginally better but more importantly I had two classes — one that I was leading and one that I was participating in, along with coaching calls and an in person meeting. (more about that meeting later). All of these pulled me forward to begin to shift my energy to one of being purposefully, passionately and playfully of service. (And boy, was I ready for some of that ‘playfully’ by then.)

Shifting the Question

But even more to the point, I had begun to get to what was going on, and I did it by shifting the question from “Why am I feeling so bad” which was only making me feel worse, to “What is the source of this suffering?” And shortly after asking that question I began to realize that it was my Inherited Purpose doing a number on me.

You see, I had taken my family to a plot of land on Saturday — 20 acres that had been a wilderness camp for teens that I’d learned from a friend was for sale. It’s a beautiful piece of land and would make a wonderful intentional community dedicated to people living lives of service, simplicity and spiritual serenity.

This has been one of our dreams since founding Life On Purpose Institute. What I failed to realize for a few days was that such a big new possibility as this had sparked the fear/lack/struggle of my Inherited Purpose. I was completely but unknowingly confronted by the idea of taking on what appeared (and still appears) to be such a massive Purpose Project.

And with that realization came the opening to begin a ‘purposeful pivot.’

“Multi-Use” Holy Ground
Back to that meeting on Wednesday afternoon. Even in the midst of all the moodiness, I had continued to ponder about ‘the Land’ and realized that my next step was to have a further conversation with the owner — to share my dream and intention with him to see if he would be ok with the land being used in this way.

I had realized from talking to him and his wife that they are devote Christians and consider the land to be Holy Ground. I would not do anything to in any way desecrate what they had built. If he wasn’t ok with our intended use, then that would be it. I’d take it no further. It just felt right in my heart to approach it this way.

So, we met yesterday. I shared my life story with him…everything, the good, the bad and the vision. And much to the distress of my Inherited Purpose, he was completely fine with what we want to do, and even encouraged to me to keep exploring the possibility. GULP!

A Final Update…For Now
After the meeting, I headed for Jump Off Rock — what I call my “Purposeful Place” (see page 211 in the Life On Purpose book for more about this power tool for living on purpose). It’s where I go when I need to reconnect with the Divine and return myself to my Self. As I sat there overlooking 3 states and a beautiful sunset that made the land below look like a fairyland, I ‘heard’ this message loud and clear: “Brad, you don’t have to.”

In other words this land and this project is an invitation from Spirit for me to play a larger game…and I don’t have to. It’s really ok if I don’t take this on, and it’s ok if I do. And with the room to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to this possibility, I now have the room to continue to explore.

We figure with the sale price of the land and the money we’d need to make some changes to the structures on the land, the project will take right at a million dollars. Funny thing, I don’t have that in my checking account at the moment.

But someone does. Some organization or person has it and perhaps would be open to funding this project through a nonprofit Life On Purpose Foundation that we would establish. We’ll see. In the meantime, I continue to take the next step…which was to share it with you, and then to ask Spirit, what are the next and the next and the next steps to take.

Oh, and I’m back — on purpose, filled with passion and yes, PLAY. It feels GOOD. Thanks for reading.

Care to comment? Please do so here.

I would love to hear from you, including what is a Purpose Project of yours that Spirit is inviting you to take on.