Girl Behind the Fence: Purpose
Per Mental Health America (MHA), "working at something that is meaningful to you can bring you a sense of purpose that will anchor you. Meaningful activity expands your sense of self-worth by adding to your skills and helping you accomplish your personal goals and feel good about yourself. Meaningful activity, which includes school, volunteer work, part-time work, and full-time employment, also enables you to meet new people and make friends." Having a sense of purpose in life is associated with a lower risk of death, according to a study published on May 24, 2019, in JAMA Network Open. The conclusion was those who had a stronger purpose in life had a significantly decreased mortality rate and overall better quality of life. These built-in health benefits provided a reason to get up each day. Stanford's psychologist William Damon describes a sense of purpose as "a stable and generalized intention to accomplish something that is meaningful to you and that leads you into the community and outside of your personal space." Purpose involves achievement, progress, and completion. Purpose opens opportunities that can help us discover goals and ideals that are personally meaningful and reach beyond ourselves to progressively define our existence. Yet, purpose does not have specific definitions or boundaries. In summary, having a purpose - whether large or small impacts our physical and mental health and overall well-being and quality of life.