In the third edition of The Power of Purpose: Find Meaning, Live Longer, Better, Richard Leider describes the importance of purpose by declaring, “Purpose is what gives life a meaning.” Throughout the text, meaning and purpose are often paired. He asks, “If we had to name what makes life worth living, what gives it meaning and purpose?”
His use of the terms “meaning and purpose” as synonymous or twin tracks was evident throughout the book. He states, “It is clear from the research that the pursuit of meaning and purpose in our lives is fundamental.” His assertation that, “People who seek meaning beyond themselves are healthier, happier, and live longer,” aligns with findings reported by Emily Esfahani Smith in the Power of Meaning. She highlights research that supports the need for workers to have human connections in order to experience meaningful work.
Clearly meaning and purpose have the power to dramatically alter our experience of even mundane tasks. As Leider points out, “Meaning develops as we share the purpose moments in life.” Whether in the workplace or elsewhere in life, meaning and purpose arise from shared experiences.
The message couldn’t be clearer: If we want to enhance meaning and purpose for our workforce, we need to build connections and create opportunities for others to build collaborative experience from their work. Aligned with the elements of Meaning-Centered Leadership, Leider’s final sentence sums up the benefit of focusing on meaning and purpose, “As you find meaning, you will live longer, better.”
For more on bringing meaning and purpose into your life, checkout our book Meaning-Centered Leadership: Skills and Strategies for Employee Well-Being and Employee Success or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.