They are some of the most burning questions in life: “What is my purpose?” and “How do I find real meaning?”
These questions are both the most central to finding true happiness, fulfillment, and flourishing, and the most difficult to answer. There are no surefire handbooks that infallibly lead you to your true vocation in three easy steps; there are no blog posts that can explain the entire meaning of life. Rather it’s a lifelong process of searching and refining; the answers you find now will change over time, as study and life experience broaden your perspective.
Fortunately, while easy answers to finding meaning and purpose can’t be served up on a silver platter, guideposts exist which can point your search in the right direction. You’ll find five such thought-stimulating guideposts below — episodes of the AoM podcast with guests who offer particularly good guidance on finding your calling and living with a greater sense of significance. Check out our podcast archives for even more episodes on the subject, and to listen to shows on a wide variety of other topics; sometimes, it’s not when we’re pondering meaning and purpose directly, but rather thinking about something seemingly unrelated, that we get an insight that connects life’s big dots.
Guide for the Journey to Your True Calling
What are you meant to do with your life? Guidance on this question can come from many sources; psychotherapist and yoga teacher Stephen Cope says that one of the best is the Bhagavad Gita. In this episode he unpacks how this ancient scripture can point you towards your true calling. This includes exploring the three areas of your life that can clue you in to your life’s purpose, and why that purpose may be small and quiet rather than big and splashy.
The Existentialist’s Survival Guide
Befitting its name, the existentialist branch of philosophy wrestles with the question of our very existence. What does it mean to be a free and individual human being? What makes this messy life worth it? In this interview, Professor Gordon Marino helps unpack those questions, bringing insight not only as a scholar but also as a football and boxing coach. After listening you’ll be better equipped to survive the setbacks, emotions, and general angst that comes with personhood.
Finding Fulfillment in a World Obsessed With Happiness
What if searching for happiness actually results in unhappiness, and to get happiness we need to be looking for something else? This interview with Emily Esfahani Smith gets into the difference between happiness and meaning, the three pillars of a meaningful life (and how we can experience them), and whether meaning requires a spiritual or faith tradition. You’ll come away from this interview looking differently at not only your life as a whole, but also at the makeup of how you spend your days.
The Quest for a Moral Life
Do you sometimes feel that from an outside perspective you seem to be doing okay, but inwardly you feel kind of empty? This is because, as David Brooks argues, you’re stuck on life’s “first mountain.” The climb up this first mountain is focused on you: getting a college degree, starting a career, falling in love, buying a home, and making your mark on the world. Those are good
Podcast #971: The 5 Factors for Crafting Simple (Read: Effective!) Messages
You want to convince your children, students and customers, whether you are a parent, teacher or business owner. In the modern world, where people are exposed to 13 hours of media per day, this is a difficult task. How can you make yourself heard in the midst of all this noise? My guest would tell me that it’s about keeping things simple.
Ben Guttmann, a marketing consultant and educator, has helped promote everything from NFL teams to New York Times bestselling authors. He is the author of Simply Put, Why Clear Messages Work–and how to Design Them. Today on the show, Ben explains the gap between how people like to receive messages and the self-sabotaging, complication-introducing ways people tend to send them. We discuss the five elements of effective marketing, which anyone can use to craft simple, powerful, and influential messages. We talk about why it’s better to focus on the benefits of something rather than the features. We also discuss how to use “and” instead of “so” in order to craft more focused messages.
Sunday Firesides: Do not confuse niceness with kindnessThing Explainer by Randall Munroe: Complicated Things in Simple Words
Ben Guttmann is on Facebook
Ben’s websiteBen at LinkedIn
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Podcast #971: 5 Factors to Crafting Simple (read: Effective!) Messages The post Messages first appeared on The Art of Manliness.
Did you miss our previous article…
Angel Jackets Review – Black Cafe Racer Leather Biker Jacket
Angel Jackets Review: Black Cafe Racer Leather Biker Jacket
Online shopping can be a bit like sailing through a turbulent sea. But every now and then, you come across a treasure trove that makes it all worthwhile. Angel Jackets is a paradise for jacket lovers like me.
I already own four leather jackets for men. What was my prize? My prize catch? The black café racer leather motorcycle jacket. This piece promised to not only add an extra layer to my wardrobe, but also to bring a new level of sophistication to my everyday attire. This is my Angel Jackets Review.
Easy Ordering Process
Angel Jackets’ seamless online experience set the tone from the start. The website guided me through the plethora options, but it was a black cafe racer leather motorcycle jacket that caught my attention, promising style and versatility. The ordering process went smoothly, with clear instructions and a checkout that was smoother than leather I was about touch. The PS169 price, including free shipping, was a great deal for the quality of what I received.
The four-day wait was well worth it. The package was not a simple box but a chest full of luxury that awaited to be opened. It beckoned, “Experience Luxury.” The message “Elevate Your Wardrobe with Our Premium Leather Jacket” was also inside. It set the scene for what seemed like a historic occasion. It was neatly folded, and a work of art, ready to be worn.
Black Cafe Racer Leather Biker Coat
The fit of the jacket was almost magical. It felt as if the jacket had been custom-made for me. The comfort of the 100% lambskin leather wrapped me in a whispering promise that it would age gracefully over time. The soft polyester lining of the jacket was like a loving embrace between it and its owner.
The nuances are what really set this jacket apart – the decorative padding on shoulders, which whispered stories of adventure; the four zipper pockets; and the zipper sleeve sleeves that speak the language of function with flair. The erect neckline with its smooth YKK zipper closure added a touch of sophistication.
This jacket wasn’t just a piece; it was an expression. The black color was like a blank canvas, allowing for endless combinations. The decorative seam details and the extra pockets, one of which is specifically for a smartphone
Did you miss our previous article…
Skill of the Week: Throw a Boomerang
A man’s ability to adapt to any situation is an important part of his masculinity. We’re republishing an illustrated guide from our archive every Sunday so that you can improve your manly knowledge week by week.
The process usually goes like this: You buy a boomerang in a toy shop because it sounds interesting. You can throw it in an open field. Throw it half a dozen times, only to hear it crash to the ground about 20 feet from where you are standing. Place the boomerang at the back of the closet and forget about it.
It’s easy to understand why boomerangs frustrate. It’s not intuitive like throwing a football or baseball. The key to a successful throw is the correct grip, throwing motion and evaluation of your circumstances. Make sure you are using a “returning” boomerang. Many of them are only for decoration and fly around as well as snow globes.
Ted Slampyak, Illustration
The Art of Manliness first published the Skill of the week: Throwing a Boomerang.
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