is the reason for which something exists.


“It's not so much how busy you are, but why you are busy. The bee is praised. The mosquito is swatted.”

Mary Flannery O'Connor (1925-1964); Writer

“We have all known the long loneliness and we have learned that the only solution is love and that love comes with community.”

Dorothy Day (1897-1980); Journalist, activist

“It is wonderful what great strides can be made when there is a resolute purpose behind them.”

Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965); British statesman, prime minister, author, Nobel Prize winner

“Every piece of the universe, even the tiniest little snow crystal, matters somehow. I have a place in the pattern, and so do you.”

T.A. Barron (born 1952); writer

“I am not afraid... I was born to do this.”

Joan of Arc (1412-1431); heroine of France

“What is success? I think it is a mixture of having a flair for the thing that you are doing; knowing that it is not enough, that you have got to have hard work and a certain sense of purpose. ”

Margaret Thatcher (born 1925); former Prime Minister of the UK

“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.”

Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962); U.S. First Lady, diplomat, human rights activist

“I don't want to get to the end of my life and find that I just lived the length of it. I want to have lived the width of it as well. ”

Diane Ackerman American writer

“If you can't figure out your purpose, figure out your passion. For your passion will lead you right into your purpose.”

T.D. Jakes (born 1957); Bishop, author

“Do not wait; the time will never be 'just right'. Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along.”

Napoleon Hill (1883-1970); motivational author

“The best things in life are never rationed. Friendship, loyalty, love, do not require coupons.”

George T. Hewitt Historian

“The purpose that you wish to find in life, like a cure you seek, is not going to fall from the sky. ...I believe purpose is something for which one is responsible; it's not just divinely assigned.”

Michael J. Fox (born 1961); Actor, activist

“A man without a purpose is like a ship without a rudder.”

Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881); essayist, satirist, historian

“The purpose of life is a life of purpose.”

Robert Byrne (born 1928); American chess player

“When you take the time to actually listen, with humility, to what people have to say, it's amazing what you can learn. Especially if the people who are doing the talking also happen to be children.”

Greg Mortenson (born 1957); humanitarian, writer, mountaineer

“To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe.”

Anatole France (1844-1924); critic, writer

“I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.”

Douglas Adams (1952-2001); English writer, humorist and dramatist

“Nothing contributes so much to tranquilize the mind as a steady purpose- a point on which the soul may fix its intellectual eye.”

Mary Shelley (1797-1851); English novelist

“You are only as strong as your purpose, therefore let us choose reasons to act that are big, bold, righteous and eternal.”

Barry Munro

“It’s not enough to be busy; so are the ants. The question is: what are we busy about?”

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862); naturalist, author, philosopher

“Start with what is right rather than what is acceptable. ”

Peter F. Drucker (1909-2005); professor, writer, management consultant

“Some people grumble because roses have thorns; I am thankful that the thorns have roses. ”

Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr (1808-1890); Critic, journalist, novelist.

“I think the purpose of life is to be useful, responsible, honorable, compassionate. It is, above all, to matter: to count, to stand for something, to have made some difference that you lived at all.”

Leo Rosten (1908-1997); Writer, teacher

More About This Value

Real Stories About Purpose

Snow Day

My dad is stubborn, yet a very loving and caring individual. He and my mom are going through the process of a divorce, so I don't get to see either of them as much as I am used to. I call either of my parents nightly when I am not at their house, see how their day went, talk about…

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positive moments

I was young and never thought that it will all pass,through faith i made it.I was a victim of rape at the age of 15 years,6 months after the incident i founded out that i am infected by hiv.It was difficult but i came to a point of saying as i am crafted for a divine purpose it shall come…

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See All 2 Stories

Read Everyday Hero Stories About Purpose

Everyday Hero: Manyang


Manyang is incredible. We both attended the University of Richmond together, and he involved me in his story one day when he asked me to proofread a grant application for him when I was sitting next to him in the library. Since then, his genuine heart has been apparent in every conversation that I've had with him. Manyang lived as…

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Everyday Hero: Nico

Nico is only 14, but he is already working at the local food bank and I've seen him helping strangers doing random things, crossing streets, carrying groceries, pushing wheelchairs. He does this all without expecting anything in return, and the most notable thing he ever told me is, "The thing I get from doing this, is getting to show the…

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Your Comments

I think that many people are frustrated with the fast pace of today. The lacking value most can't pinpoint is purpose. Is what I am spending my time with useful, meaningful? The answer is individual. Facebook, money, work, friends you chose, etc. Is there purpose in this? Good and bad, there is always purpose.
Megan 6 months ago from North Carolina

"The purpose of life is to have a life of purpose."
Ayden Smith about 1 year ago from Wahpeton, North Dakota

Do good, and you will feel good! I promise!
Janez Hacin over 1 year ago from Geneva

Purpose points us in the right direction.
Bruce Willingham over 1 year ago from Warner Robins, Ga

Purpose is why we are here. To make a difference in the lives of others.
Bruce Willingham over 2 years ago from Warner Robins Ga

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