#230 What Does it Mean to Live Life on Purpose

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 Being diagnosed with breast cancer is a life-changing experience that can make us reassess our priorities and goals. It can also bring new clarity and focus to our lives. 

Living with intention means making conscious choices about how we want to live our lives. It means being intentional about the people we spend time with, the activities we engage in, and the goals we set for ourselves. Living with intention requires us to be present in the moment and to focus on what is important to us. 

Breast cancer can make us realize how precious life is and how important it is to make the most of our time. It can also bring new meaning and purpose to our lives. 

Living with intention can also help us cope with the challenges that come with a breast cancer diagnosis. It can give us a sense of control over our lives and help us stay focused on what we can do to improve our health and well-being. It can also help us stay positive and motivated, even in the face of adversity. 

In this podcast, we’ll explore practical strategies for living with intention.  

We’ll discuss how to set goals that align with our values and how to stay focused on what is important to us. 

 We’ll also talk about the importance of self-care and how to prioritize our physical and emotional health. 

By living with intention, breast cancer survivors can create a life that is fulfilling, meaningful, and joyful. We can use our experience with cancer to inspire us to make the most of every day and to live life to the fullest. 

Referred to in this episode: 

Becoming You, 8-Weeks of Reinventing Life After Breast Cancer 




Read the full transcript below:

Laura Lummer  00:00

You're listening to the breast cancer recovery coach podcast. I'm your host, Laura Lummer. I'm a Certified Life health and nutrition coach, and I'm also a breast cancer thriver. If you're trying to figure out how to move past the trauma and the emotional toll of breast cancer, you've come to the right place. In this podcast, I will give you the tools and the insights to create a life that's even better than before breast cancer. Well, let's get started.


Laura Lummer  00:32

Hello, hello, welcome to episode 230 of the breast cancer recovery coach podcast. I'm your host, Laura Lummer. Super excited to be here with you today. And before I get into the show at all, I want to remind you that February 28, Tuesday, February 28, we're having the self love after breast cancer online events. And I will be joining five other breast cancer survivors or breast cancer advocates, their authors, they are Chad Cass hosts, and there are women who either understand this experience or support other women going through breast cancer. And we're going to be talking about so many things related to taking care of yourself to really loving yourself, to really putting yourself first your needs first and to understanding at a very deep level, what self love is and why it is important to your life. So I'll be talking about why Self Love is the foundation of healthy change. And that a lot of that comes from my own personal experience, a tremendous amount comes from the women that I coach, and what I see them create in their lives. When we practice and learn the art of Self Compassion and self love. It's incredible the transformation this brings. And my spot talking about why Self Love is the foundation of healthy change is because when you love yourself, you treat yourself better write when we really get in touch with ourselves, when we take the time and create the space to understand what we need to give value to what we need to acknowledge our worthiness and to not acknowledge our valid desires. You know, so many times, I know we will think about something we want or want to say or want to have on to create, and then immediately go into devaluing that you don't need this, or people will think this about it, or I. But I shouldn't want that for myself. And we know we have this desire, there's something in us that saying, I want this, I need this, this is important. And then we allow our brains to talk ourselves out of it. So when we talk about self love, and healthy change coming from self love, that is understanding how to process that part where the brain steps in and tries to convince you that you don't need what you know, you need, that you're not worth what it takes extra time to do, or extra money to invest in yourself, or extra effort to be intentional about change you're making, we're going to talk a lot about that in today's show. So anyway, that's my take. And we're gonna be talking about that I have like 30 minutes, I'll be talking about the importance of self love for as the foundation of healthy change. And you'll get to interact with me and the other ladies that are going to be there at the event as well. And it will be recorded. So if you cannot make it live, you can have access to the recording for 48 hours after the event. So please register is a free event, I know you'll get a lot out of it. And you can find the link to register where you're listening to this podcast, just scroll down where you're listening and see the notes and you'll see a link to register for free. Or go to my website and look at the show notes that you will find at the breast cancer recovery coach.com forward slash 230 230. All right, go there now do it now. Don't forget, because I know how busy we get. And things get forgotten. And that just leads right into today's show. Right into the idea of living on purpose of living intentionally. So if you just heard me talk about this, and you think yes, that that sounds like something I might really need. That sounds like something I want to listen to. Maybe I can get more ideas about how to support myself in going there. And then the next thing is somebody sends you a text message and you're like, Oh, let me check that message first. And then it's gone. You forgot, you didn't move on. You didn't register. And then later you'll hear someone talk about it. You'll see something pop up on Facebook and you think Oh darn, I really wanted to do that. So I talk often about living intentionally. And I even have programs where I say create a life on purpose, you know, becoming you eight weeks love designing a life on purpose? What does that mean? Like? Don't you already live on purpose? Is it getting up every day and getting shit done living on purpose? Not necessarily. What does living intentionally actually mean? Well, here's a definition that I found on psych Central. They say intentional living comes from living out your values. This means taking actions and making decisions that are important to you, and true to who you are. intentional living also becomes an everyday practice, that we might fall in and out of knowing we can always start again, in any moment. I love that because I think that that last part is so important. And here's where I can relate that to when you're living intentionally, and we say, as so many of us do. So many humans, so many women, so many survivors, we want to eat a certain way, we want to nourish our body in a certain way. And we start off like at the beginning of the year being very intentional about that, we make a decision and we say, this is what I'm going to do. This is the way that I'm going to eat. I'm thinking about it while I've planned my grocery list. I'm thinking about it, when I plan my time for the week, so that I have time to do food preparation. I'm thinking about it when I pack a lunch, to go to work or to go anywhere else. And I'm on purpose, deciding this is going to be a part of my life. And then Valentine's Day comes around, and you do something that isn't on that plan you set for yourself. And then you say, Oh, I blew it. And so then for the rest of the week, you eat whatever you feel like eating, you're not being intentional, you're not planning, you're hungry. So you're grabbing anything you feel like are the closest most convenient thing. And then you say to yourself, Well, I started off the year, so good, but then I blew it. And we don't tell ourselves, well, there's still a lot of days in the year left. And I can do it again. You know, and I can try to find a flow. I can, in fact say that my intention is to figure out how to have this healthy lifestyle and this healthy eating plan. Even if I do go in and out of it, we always plan on having setbacks, because that's a human life. And we will always, always have setbacks. So we give ourselves permission to know I will not be perfect, and I don't have to be perfect. This isn't about being perfect, it's about being intentional. Meaning that I make a conscious decision, that one of my values is to nourish my body with good, whole healthy food as often as I can. And to also enjoy and indulge in some of the other things in life that maybe don't fall into my belief about what is a healthy whole food. All right, we can go in and out. So I think the last part of that quote that I read to you of knowing we can get back in at any time is very important. This goes across the board. So if you're struggling at work, and you're just going back and forth demands and stress and working too long. And if you live in California sitting on the freeway forever, just getting there and getting home, and you just feel like oh my gosh, I'm just being drawn this way and that way. Because you're being drawn this way in that way you kind of lose motivation. You feel like, oh, this job, it's just it's taking away from my life instead of adding to my life. And how long do I have to be here and I clock in or I check in and I can't wait till that eight hours is done. And then you stop and say, You know what? I don't like the way that feels. And so I'm going to make a decision. This is how I'm going to do my job, I'm going to go ahead and set myself a goal to attain something or to show up in a certain way, or to dress in a certain way so that I feel in a different way when I show up. And I'm going to be very intentional about doing things that make this job more satisfying for me and bring me more joy in my day. And so you shift that mindset, and you kind of recommit and then you go to work with this new belief, this new idea, this new on purpose way of working so that you feel better about your job and your day. Same thing in your relationships, right we go through our relationships, a lot of times just reacting, bouncing off of other people's words other people's requests other people's demands other people's be Hey viewers, and then we say things like, they are stressing me out, this is so stressful, I have so much anxiety, versus we step back and say, You know what, I'm going to be really intentional about the way I show up in this relationship. I'm going to show up in this way, with this mindset. Because here's something I want to create in this relationship. I want to create a closer friendship, I want to create a more romantic, intimate relationship with my partner. And I'm going to show up, really thinking about me and my words, and what I'm saying and my emotions, I will be intentional about my role in this relationship, on how I respond to things. Whereas what we often do in relationships, especially in work and at home, is we show up waiting to see what someone's going to do, that's going to piss us off.


Laura Lummer  10:59

That's not intentional living, that's being the victim of life. So think about it like this, I'll reflect back on a time in my life. When I was younger, when I had no idea that I could live intentionally, when I didn't understand that I could decide what I would do in my day, what I would not do in my day, that I thought I had to respond to what this kid needed, what this partner needed, what this boss needed, and just respond, respond, respond, respond, I told myself, basically, without even being conscious of it, that my life was at the whim of other people. You know, if they needed something, I had to make it happen, I was the one who was the go to person. And sometimes we even pride ourselves on being our go to person. But when we put ourselves in that position, that means that no matter what you're doing, when someone else says I need you, I need this, I don't know how to do this, I need your help, then you drop everything, and you just go and do it. And you're constantly taking care of other people's needs. Now, this is not to say, Never take care of their needs. But it's to say that you are doing something and so you might respond, if it's not an emergency, if it's not critical, you may respond with, I'll be happy to help you with that. I can be there in 20 minutes, I'll be happy to help you with that I can be there the day after tomorrow. Right? So you're being very intentional about your time, you're still living with your core value. Because whatever you're doing in the moment is important to you. Now this person who made a request that might also be important to you, that you're going to be intentional about your time and when you show up so that you're not running yourself ragged and exhausting yourself all the time. And I bring this up because I see this a lot. We go through life, just thinking that we are here to serve others whenever they need it. However, they needed at the drop of a dime. And when I talked to people about the fact that they don't have to show up that way, oftentimes a lot of guilt comes up. Right? A lot of but they need me, but they need this, but they need that. And so I just want to make it very clear. I'm not saying don't show up for other people. But I'm saying show up in a way that is conducive to the life you want to create for yourself.


Laura Lummer  13:24

So this takes us back to the idea from that, quote, love doing what's important to you living by your core values. So what are your core values? When was the last time that you took a moment to consider that and to sit down and to write down? I encourage four because I think any more than four can start to become overwhelming. But what are the four core values? What are the four things that are most important to you in your life? When you consider those things, and then you look at where you're spending your time, what you're doing in your life. And you ask yourself, do those things align? If they don't, then I would offer that you're not living your life intentionally. Because if you did, then where you're spending your time and your energy would become much more in alignment with what is important to you. So going back to the earlier example of changing your diet, if a core value of yours is I support my body through living a healthy lifestyle, then you will make decisions on purpose to align with that. So if you find yourself in a place where you are in your life and you're thinking, you know, I'm I'm not as healthy as I want to be, I don't need the healthy lifestyle I want to live then it's time to really reflect on that and ask yourself, what is the value that you're living by now, and you may find that you're just not right there. Just kind of going with the flow. You're just kind of going through life. If and this is there, and that didn't come up, and there was no opportunity for exercise, and I don't know how to meditate or whatever the things you perceive as being healthy lifestyle factors are that you're not practicing. What is your core value when it comes to that? And then when you align with that, you become much more intentional, and you do things on purpose. And as I said, there'll be times you won't, you'll slip up, you say, well, this really wasn't what I intended. I just really didn't have the energy or I was too tired, or I didn't feel well. And that's okay. And then you say, oh, okay, I realized that I slipped away from this thing that was important to me, this thing that aligned with my core values. And now I've got to do some deliberate work, intentional work to get back to it. What does that mean? Well, if you're intentional about exercising, that means that you're thinking about it the night before, you're thinking, What time am I going to stay up until? Because What time am I going to get up to work out? Okay, I've got to go to bed by this time, in order to get up by that time, am I going to have another glass of wine tonight? Well, if I do, I am not gonna feel like getting up for yoga in the morning, I'm not going to feel like getting up and going for that walk in the morning. So I'll be intentional about the choice that I make tonight. So that I do the things I want to do tomorrow morning. So I feel the way I want to feel, and I live a life that aligns with what is important to me. That's why intention is so important. So that's why I say, when we're living life on purpose, does that mean just getting up and mechanically getting through the day, get the kids does get off to work, you know, get the groceries, make sure dinner's ready, all the things that we just normally do, and are in the habit of doing. So we make sure they're done. And then we sit back at the end of the night exhausted and turn on Netflix, so we can just zone out? Is that living on purpose? Or is that just getting through life. So another part of that quote was, it becomes a daily practice. And that is a critical part of what we're talking about. Because as I said, if you're going to be thinking about tomorrow, today, and knowing that you want to do something specific tomorrow, you want to have the energy to get up and write that next chapter of your book, you want to get up and have enough energy to go out with the grandkids, or go out with the girls or whatever it is, then you're gonna be thinking about it the night before, this is how it becomes a practice, it becomes a daily practice to live intentionally, because you, you need to be thinking ahead. So it's kind of like this idea we share about living into your future self. So if my core value is I am a person who leads a healthy lifestyle. That's the future version of me that I'm working towards. And I asked myself in this moment, in this decision I'm about to make, does that get me closer to that future version of myself, so that this intention becomes a part of our daily practice our daily thoughts, and it supports the decisions that we make now. So that we're creating the life we want in the future. Now, I had a coaching call the other day, and I love my clients, I love my coaching calls, I always get so much out of them. And I have one client in particular who's incredibly insightful. She works very hard, very intentionally, to be aware of what she's thinking and feeling internally. And we're having this conversation, you're gonna know who you are. And I love you know, we're having this conversation. And she says, You know what, I just never understood why I needed to live with attention. She says, I felt like and I thought, why, why can I just do what I do? Why do I have to be intentional about it. And now with all the practice we've been doing, we've been working together for three years now more than three years now. And she says, you know, and now I see, I have to be intentional, I have to be intentional about what I do. And I think that this is something important to touch on. A lot of times when we say live with intention, do things on purpose, decide what aligns with who you are, and then make decisions to make that happen intentionally. A lot of times people react with that's restrictive. That means I have to do things and I can't just be a free spirit. Right? And then there's the other side of the coin, or actually, it's kind of a shadow of this what I just shared with you. Why can't I just go through and do things the way that I normally do things? And I would say in that that situation? Were you asking yourself, I can just go on like I'm going on? Well look at that and ask yourself, Am I getting the results that I want? Am I living the life that I want? Am I accomplishing the things I'm having the experiences in life that I want to have, do I feel good about it? If you are, then by all means just keep doing what you're doing if it's working for you, but if it's not working for you, and if you're feeling like I'm losing my power, and I don't have a focus, and I'm not feeling grounded, and I'm not feeling like I'm going anywhere, a lot of times people will tell me that they're stuck. It's because we're just going through the motions of life very mechanically. This can translate across the board in relationships, I'm just used to doing this. And so I do things this way. At work, I do things this way, I've been doing this for years, even in our own medical treatment, we put all the power into the hands of another practitioner. And we might say, Well, I have to do that, because my doctor said, or I have to do this, or I have to do that. And I am not by any means saying don't follow medical advice. But I'm saying listen to the words that you're using. When you do that, if you decide on a treatment plan, know that you're doing that on purpose. You're not just doing what someone else tells you to do, you're a grown ass person, you're an adult. So you get to say, I am doing this, I chose to do this. And I'm doing this with attention. When we do that, especially when we're going through treatment and treatments that can have really intense physical repercussions on us. Another beautiful thing habits, because when you create time, and you do this on purpose, the taking of the medications, the showing up for the appointments, then you start to look at it and be more aware. Look at your life that surrounds the way that your medical treatment is going and become more aware of what you might need to support yourself better. When you say yes, this is the plan that I have committed to, I'm doing this, I'm going to show up for this, I trust that this is the right thing for me. Then if you find yourself chasing your tail because of other obligations and things that compete for your time, you can say, Wow, okay, I decided to do that on purpose, that treatment plan. And now I need more time to recover from it. I need more time for myself to rest in between. Now I'm going to be intentional about creating that time I need for recovery. So the more we own into exactly what we want, and how it aligns with how we're living, we become more intentional, we free up more time for ourselves. And we find ourselves doing the things we enjoy and creating the future we want. And manifesting it even faster. Because we're doing it on purpose. Right? If


Laura Lummer  22:45

you say I want to spend more time with my children or with my grandchildren, if you just say that and move on, then it's just a wish. It's just hopeful. Do you think they're going to show up at your door? You know, do you think they're going to show up making plans for you? No, we don't just say I want to, or I wish that I could or I would like it if this happens. We have to say if we're going to live with intention, this is what I'm going to do. This is what I'm going to create, I am going to spend more time with my spouse, I am going to leave work at this time. Right? We have to make that decision and do it on purpose. So I think that those are some really important things to keep in mind to hear yourself say, when you're wondering, gosh, am I doing this intentionally? Am I guiding my life with intention? And, and on purpose? And when I say on purpose, I don't mean with purpose, right? Because with purpose that throws a whole nother wrench in the thing people are looking at say, oh my god, what is my purpose? I don't know what my purpose is. How do I live with purpose? No, I'm saying on purpose. And here's another beautiful thing you might find when you decide that I'm going to do this intentionally. One thing is, it's not going to be as restrictive as your brain might first drill up and people think, okay, okay, that's restrictive. I can't be a free spirit. Well, if you're a free spirit, what is important to you in life is having free time to enjoy whatever it is that comes up or to enjoy your art or to enjoy your friends or enjoy your cooking. This brings you that creative fulfillment, then when you live with intention, what you'll be doing is creating space to allow that free spirit to flow. So it's actually the complete opposite of restriction. And the entire process is going to show you what you need to support yourself even better. And give yourself the time to align your life with what is really important to you. You know I think about this when I actually sat down to do this podcast I was going to talk about another topic. which will probably hear next week. And this little whisper that I sometimes hear, so no, let's this one needs to be talking about living life with intention, and living life on purpose. And I think that's so important and why it came up is because today is the birthday of my brother. And my brother passed 30 years ago. And he would be 62 years old today, he was 32 years old when he died from testicular cancer. And as I reflect on him and his part of my life and what his life looked like, before he left us, I realized how many lives he touched. And what he did with his life, in the short period of time he was here. And in 32 years, he became a chiropractor. You know, he married the woman that he loves, he began a very successful career, and he touched many, many people's lives. And I think about his life, and I reflect on it now in my life. And I just realized that all the things I want to do, I have to be sure that I'm prioritizing them. And then I have to be sure that I'm writing them down daily, that becomes a part of the daily practice, I write when I want to accomplish what I want to see where I want to go, who I want to spend time with, what celebrations I want to have, and make that a part of my daily practice to keep my mind focused on it. Because I remind myself, life is short. No one knows how short and I don't say that, to inspire fear, I say it to inspire. Because we need to be focused on doing the things that bring us joy and happiness, with all the intention, and all the odd purposiveness that we can muster. So that every day of our lives is filled with as much joy as it can be. When we don't exercise that intention muscle, when we don't say this is what I want. And this is what I want it to look like, then really what we're doing is just sitting back and wishing for a life that will never manifest because we're not putting energy into creating it. So today, this day, especially I think it's important to reflect on how intentional your life is. Are you living your life on purpose? And how amazing and what amazing things would you be creating for yourself? If you were doing that, and no matter what you're going through right now, no matter what life is offering you right now, sometimes that's great. Sometimes it's hurtful, sometimes it's amazing. But no matter what it is to recall, life may be offering this to me. But I get to decide how I respond to life. I get to decide within those circumstances, what I'm going to think and what I'm going to create, and how I'm going to show up. That's living life with intention, right? Otherwise, we sit back and we hold our head in our hands. And we're just like, how much do I have to take? How much will life keep throwing at me? How long will this go on? All of these questions that just stripped you of your power. Versus I have no idea what life is gonna throw at me. But I do know how I'm going to show up. Because I'm going to align with my core values, and I'm going to show up as someone who believes in their personal power. I'm going to show up as someone that regardless of the circumstance, I will be doing everything I can to live my healthiest life, I will be doing everything I can to make sure I create time to see my friends and my family, right, those core values of yours. Otherwise, a year will go by. And you'll think gosh, I haven't seen that person forever because everybody's life will go by, no, you got to get that phone out and say hey, I need to see you it's been a month what's a good day for you? right intention. And that crosses over every aspect of our life, from how much sleep you're gonna get, what kind of food you're going to eat, and what kind of relationships you're going to invest your time and energy into. And if you need any help with that, you can come and find me at the breast cancer recovery coach comm you can join my becoming you program which is eight weeks of creating the life you want on purpose or join the better than before breast cancer life coaching membership where you will get all the coaching and support you need to help you through the thoughts that stop you from living life on purpose. Alright, my friend, I hope that's something that helped you out today. And I will look forward to talking to you again next week. And until then, Please be good to yourself.

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