A Great Man Is Also One Question

The reason I thought Patricia Madson is fantastic is because her writing is exceptionally inspiring. If you can, get her book called Improv Wisdom, her one and only book I think. Click here for the previous post.

Consolidating her experience into a mere 13 maxims or rules, she teaches us how to paint outside the lines.  

Last year, I discovered that ‘a great man is one sentence‘. (Click here for the post). And how I thought this ‘one sentence’ is a good starting point in discovering our will to meaning.

Patricia Madson gave me the second sentence so to speak, but in the form of a question – what is my purpose now?

If a great man is one sentence talks about long term, what is my purpose now is about now.

It’s inevitable that we meet crisis/crises in life. Today, Gen Y talks about quarter life crisis, substituting baby boomer’s mid life crisis.

Whenever we are confused and couldn’t make up our mind, the question ‘what is my purpose now’ acts like a compass that can redirect us to our true north. By realigning our focus, this powerful question helps us either to redefine the boundary of the problem or to provide a more proper context to evaluate our dilemma.

Too often than not, we just miss the wood for the trees. Hence the need for this question that readily invites us to take a step back before we reassess the situation. Also, a central theme underlying this question is perseverance. Why? Because some problems may just discourage and paralyse us into inaction.

Besides the ultimate framework for everything that I am zealously searching for, another thing that I thought will be useful is a list of all these one sentence statements. So far, I’ve collected two and let’s see how far the list can go. I’m personally looking for 3, 7 or 12, depending on how the entire activity unfolds. Let’s just see how many that I can collect in this lifetime.

Just like how the white Lady of Lothlorien, Galadriel, told Frodo in the Lord of the Rings, “I give you the light of Eärendil, our most beloved star. May it be a light for you in dark places, when all other lights go out”, I think this question ‘what is my purpose now’ is our version of that light of Eärendil that will shine for us when all other lights go out.

6 thoughts on “A Great Man Is Also One Question”

  1. My purpose now is to thank you with a big virtual hug for mentioning Improv Wisdom and for sharing your enthusiasm. Few things delight an author more than being understood. Clearly “What’s my purpose now?” cuts through and helps us find that point of direction. Its so easy to get distracted. May all of your improvisations turn out well!

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