“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” - Mahatma Gandhi
Like every other individual, I too had a phase where I wandered directionless trying to figure the oblivious answers of existence of mankind. The feelings of confusion, desolation, and yearning to seek answers engulfed to create a monster in my mind. All I remember is feeling weird, and the desire to change it. Consequently, I began the pursuit to define the purpose of my life.
Usually people find their purpose either through self-introspection, or reading books, whereas I found it through Internet. (No Kidding! Where can one expect a millennial to start from, if not a Google search?)
Google defined purpose as “the reason for which something is done, or created for or which someone exists”. Intrigued by the definition, I realized that only my actions can translate my mere existence into a life with purpose, and I have the complete liberty to define it.
Now the missing piece in the puzzle was to find which actions would define a meaningful and rewarding purpose. This is when I began to volunteer with Rotaract Club of Toronto, where I experienced a series of revelation moments that helped me see the big picture. Here’s a list of three things that I learned while volunteering at Rotaract that helped me live a life with purpose:
Actions are expressions of core values: Our experiences shape our values, which are further translated with our actions. The club’s International Service Committee illuminated how a mere necessity like water, shoes, or sanitary pads can be a luxury for some. The glimpse of harsh realities of people’s lives simply made me value, and be grateful for what I have, and the strength to share those with others. I realized my compassion towards such issues, which translated into actions of fundraising. The joy of creating positive impact in someone living miles away filled me with sense of fulfilment.
Selfless Service: “A candle loses nothing by lighting other candles” – James Keller. Even though I joined Rotaract as a way to find my purpose, it allowed me become a part of community, and be selfless in service. I became capable of channelling my energy in serving, and solving bigger issues rather than focusing on trivial matters. Rotaract’s slogan “service above self’ got etched on my mind with time, as I was surrounded by people who tirelessly worked toward the goal of serving others. The outer expression of service and the worthiness of my occupational skills elevated my confidence in defining who I was as a person.
Leading by example: Rotaract Club of Toronto has like-minded and self-driven members focused on transforming the world through service. Every member shares compassion, and love for beings, and won’t hesitate in taking an initiative towards resolving an issue, therefore setting an example for others by leading. They recognize everyone’s potential; encourage members to use knowledge of their area of expertise by sharing it with others. One works on initiative suggested by members, and learns something new about the world every time.
Joining Rotaract Club of Toronto was my investment in finding my purpose, but staying in the club was a choice to surround myself with wonderful people, and strive to leave a positive impact and make this life worthwhile.
Contributor: -Ankita Sethi