Photos of Conan in Movies

Finding Your Life Purpose And Developing The Drive To Get It

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Your life purpose - Forget all the spiritualist hanky panky on finding the meaning of life.

Go back to basics. When you were a kid and someone asked you what you wanted to be when you grew up what did you answer? That alone will probably answer the question of what is your life purpose, or at least it'll give you a good place to start.

Failing that think deep down, really let your imagination go WILD.

What would life be like if you were a rock star, an International speaker, movie star, Multi-National CEO, successful entrepreneur, soldier of fortune in Africa, deep sea scientist, retired on the beaches of a tropical paradise, helping children in the 3rd world, legitimate Porn Star, tracking down Khmer Rouge leaders in Cambodia and bringing them before the UN courts?

Any fantasy life purpose, no matter how wild, you can do it and you can start right now....

Yes, right now, as in this very minute - go grab a pen and paper read on and start writing, and keep writing your life purpose will eventually flow out. 

Deep down you know your life purpose, your calling, your path to enlightnement (or one of a thousand other names) but your life purpose is too far fetched for you to believe.

But your life purpose is not too far fetched to achieve.

Look at me. I am a living breathing example of someone going for broke one way ticket, no plan B, no sidetracking. From a skinny, unpopular teenager to a Movie Star (almost - give it 3 months when the Bangkok Adrenaline DVD comes out International - it came out in Hong Kong last week).

If a near anorexic long distance runner can decide his life purpose is to become the World's Biggest Action Hero -  then your life purpose can be anything equally outrageous.

I have a question for you Conan.. I'm sure you know a lot about Arnold Schwarzenegger since his story is in a way similar to yours. After reading a bit about him I was quite impressed by his deep motivation and relentless drive to push forward despite all the difficulties he faced. What was the source of his motivation? How does one develop a "drive" like that?

I have 15 different reasons I can give but the real reason will take a little time to track down.

I know little about Arnold Schwarzenegger's past and his struggles, I do know about his victories and some of the steps he took and he was a role model when I was younger but now things have taken on a life of their own. Seeing him was the reason I first joined the gym in fact.

For me the "drive" to achieve my life purpose is a sense of right. What I am doing is right for me, nothing else would be right for me, I would not enjoy it, I would not prosper. There are other things I enjoy. I enjoy writing, I enjoy working on the Internet and computers but I tried that for a life purpose and I did not enjoy that, it is best left as a hobby, or supporting skill for my true life purpose, being the world's biggest actor.

I could go back to Australia tomorrow and fall into a comfortable IT job with good pay, good benefits and paid(!) annual leave. But I am happier here, in my $100 a month Asian style room, not apartment, room, living off my meagre Adsense earnings between jobs in a style that would shock and pobably revulse most westerners "How could you live like that?" - because I am enjoying my life journey, the struggle, overcoming obstacles, achieving success and the personal growth.

I cannot afford to go out and eat Western food at restaurants with friends, I cannot go out partying with friends on the weekend. I am struggling financially but I know that sooner or later I will make a movie that will pay enough to cover this extended poor part of my life. 

So in a way it is arrogance. I am right, they are all wrong, and I am going to bloody well do this. It is not a calling, it is not God's will, my life purpose is not some mystical secret, my life purpose is to make me happy and not discontent.  And I enjoy the struggle and the success I win along the way - this is a major part of it.

Society's Purpose Is Not Your Purpose 

On top of this, being Australian, I have always had an easy life, I have always designed it that way, and working in a job or going back to start another business? I've considered it, but I would then feel like a failure and would spend the rest of my life unhappily contemplating what could have been if only I'd pressed on....

I don't fit into the standard social mold, I refuse. That is the Governments purpose for the working class, not mine.

All the bulldust pushed down people's throats makes me sick. The news is propaganda, the big companies pay politicians to do their bidding. Lies, corruption, political plunder of the people they are supposed to serve.

Marijuana is illegal but ritalin is forced onto kids. No money in pot, it grows like a weed, there's lots of money in designer amphetamines, and it hooks the users, sorry patients.

The crap they do to the food supply is outrageous, hormones, cancer causing chemicals, industrial waste remarketed as healthy and good for you.

I absuloutely refuse to be a part of all those lies. Which is why I live in Asia, here corruption is out in the open, well everyone knows but everyone pretends it does not happen.

One politician ran for Mayor in a MAJOR city (10 million+) on the strength of the slogan "You know I'm corrupt, but at least I am honest about it" - that I can deal with.

The drive to be me is just that. I want a life purpose that provides lots of free time, and lots of money, a life partner of my chosing (still looking for the right one) and anything else I want, when I want it, where ever I want it.

Being a movie star as my life purpose would give me that, working in a job won't ever give me that. There are other careers that could give me what I want but when I went through the list one day as I sat down to decide what to do with my life I crossed many of them off for various reasons. The top thing on the list of my life purpose was movie star, and it was what I wanted to do since I was 16, so I went for it, and moved overseas to Thailand to action it.

I know many people don't like my approach to my life purpose. I am too forward and too direct. They are soft with delusional thinking that the universe will provide if I just sit on my butt and think about it a little more.

Your life purpose doesn't work like that, you need to action your ideas and dreams and things come to you. Big opportunities come every day but YOU need to be ready and able to see it as an opportunity and be prepared enough to take it and make it part of your dream/goal/life.

I heard an Amway speaker once say "It's not you waiting on God, it's God waiting on you - you can do it!". The universe will not provide if you do nothing. It's YOUR life purpose YOU go out and do it, if it is not something that you would do for free day in and day out then you have chosen, or more likely, someone else has pushed their life purpose on you.After all "God helps those who helps themselves."

I refuse to see failure. Sir Richard Branson says failure is giving up and nothing else, I agree.

Each time I 'fail' I learn something, I get better, I am slowly 'making it' in a very difficult career by learning it all myself and making my own path. Sure there may be teachers who could help me attain my life purpose and beaten paths to take but in the end I want to accomplish, I want to achieve my life purpose. It is all part of the adventure.

This makes me feel good about myself. I was always right all along, all those who told me I couldn't or wouldn't make it are slowly being proven wrong, not that they know, nor will I bother to tell them  but it is good to have put faith in myself and be rewarded for it.

Many people think I am dumb because I have a big, muscular body and am HUGE, one of the biggest men in the world in fact. This aggravates me to no end, as people who do this this are always of questionable intelligence - as Brad Suagrs once said "Never argue with an idiot, it just makes two." so move on when you meet you suspect to be like this.

As an Australian I don't put myself above anyone, the immigrants to Australia left that class culture back in England and Europe and started fresh in a new country where everyone was equal. I truly detest people who then go around trying to put themselves above me others.

I have 140+ IQ and am a member of MENSA, I joined to show people that I am highly intelligent please don't fall for the movie stereotype (that I often played early on), even at the MENSA exam I was sneered at by some of the other attendees. In India that membership was really appreciated and I was looked at in a very good light.

Seems that the answer has been a bit of a ramble but in the end that is the answer to how to attain the drive to achieve your life purpose.

I have seen friends "use the power of positive thinking" to try to become rich and famous, and not get off their butt, even when opportunity was knocking it was too much effort for them to answer the door and have a go.

Again there too was a problem with their life purpose, being "rich and famous" isn't a life purpose, it is a by-product of success, and the famous bit is a curse more than a benefit.

I have seen some friends chase their life purpose with great gusto rising up to mediocre success and then fading, giving up, thinking it was too hard to go the rest of the way, obviously their dream was not big enough to sustain them through hardship. They were not following their true life purpose.

I don't want to be like them. Shattered men, their dreams broken, in moments of solemness or drunkeness they will admit they feel like failures. Really they are not the same men I knew when they were still trying, full of life and spirit.

That is a fate worse than death - clinically living but dead inside.

OK my life is not stable, definitely not safe and I go out of my way to put myself in dangerous situations if my morals decree it (I apprehended an armed robber and on another occassion stopped a rape in the last 3 months and even made the national news. But my life is fun, no one else that I know of has a life like mine.

I remember one time telling a mid level manager in a large telco a little about my life and her eyes went all cloudy as she imagined it and said "wow, your life is like a dream". - at that I laughed internally as I thought her life was like a dream, high pay, holidays, insurance, free medical, no money worries, likely investing in her future - all things I did not have and would not have for a long time.


How To Get The Drive To Succeed No Matter What 

How does one develop a "drive" like that? (for attaining life purpose)

As for drive it's something that's CULTIVATED over many years of struggle and hard work and pushing through barriers and obstacles. The drive does grow stronger, I used to listen to tapes everyday, read self help or motivational books from successful people everynight and go to at least one lecture on anything positive or financial once a month.

Now I don't need to do it. I just watch my showreel, my old wrestling tapes, or the movie that I wrote and starred in and have right here on DVD. That is all the motivation I need today. Yes it is 'only' a Thailand cinema release (successful) and it is 'only' a International DVD release (some people actually say that "it is only...." - yeah, only 7 million times better than the no movie they ever made) but I am extremely proud of my accomplishment.

Bangkok Adrenaline Conan Poster 2

Me With Advertising Cut Outs Of Me At The Bangkok Adrenaline Launch 

That and I can see the light at the end of the tunnel so to speak. This life goal is almost fulfilled, I have successfully served my acting apprenticeship in Asia and kept myself out of the eyes of the American audience so that when I arrive it is in a decent role, not playing the big bad dumb guy who gets a grunt or two, once you are stylised as that kind of actor it is very hard to break the misconception.

I love it - this is a great post. Just close your eyes and GO WILD. I love how you're not afraid to blow your own horn most people nowadays are ashamed of their greatness and want to hide it away. I love it when there's someone who's not afraid to talk about his success or play it down.

The reason I blow my own trumpet sometimes is that so many people are giving advice when they are not qualified. My qualification is my achievements, my success in my chosen path. You cannot learn anything from someone who read the book (that you also read) and then loves to go telling people how to live. Most of these people are not experienced in the advice they are giving.

If someone asked me advice on a motorcycle, abseiling, mountain climbing, or which corporate job would suit them best I quite happily admit that I do not know, go ask a specialist, find an expert, preferrably someone who you would aspire to be like or try the library.

When I worked with David Carradine I shut up and listened to him talk, I took it all in, and encouraged him to continue. I look forward to the day I get to be one on one with Jean Claude Van Damm and Dolph Lundgren, I will do the same. These are people whose accomplishments I respect and would like to emulate, to learn and adapt their experiences for my own life purpose.

I'd never go to an online forum and ask for advice on my acting career, yet plenty of unqualified people would give plenty of advice for free - because that is what  free advice is worth = nothing. (Even if they have good intentions it is still harmful for you. Like a very good mate who recently started trying to get me to give up my dreams, he thinks I am running out of time and need to get a job and a house - he has good intentions but does not understand the film industry at all so his advice is tainted by this)

Conan a lot of what you said made sense, but I get the feeling that your trying to prove your worth to other people. Mind you, proving your worth can be a big instigator in getting off ones butt

Good point, it does read that way. It's just that I have been getting a lot of negativism recently, the closer I get to success the more I attract. Generally I don't care what other people think but I have recently lost what I thought was a good friend to his own jealousy, and another will probably go the same way in a week or two. Add in there are dozens of self important people in the 'scene' where I am who suffer the same affliction and say bad things about me behind my back, but are nice and all smiles to my face.

The Amway speakers I listened to a lot when I first started growing said this would happen, and I am glad in a way because I know what the cause of their negativity is and I know it has happened to many people successful people before and it means I am on the right track, and it also means that I am probably close to making that breakthrough whereby I become an "overnight success"

(Yes I do cut these negative people from my life the once they show their true colours and it isn't just a temporary lapse - as we all get emotional at times).

I am doing this all for me, for my own sense of self worth, for my own self esteem and my confidence grows to the point now where I KNOW that I am going to make it and achieve my life purpose

TRUE confidence is the only key to success.

How do you get more respect by going to Mensa? Is it that you tell your people your part of Mensa?

I don't "go to" MENSA, I am an International member and as such we don't have meetings. I get respect by being a member because the organisation is respected in some circles. MENSA Membership is limited to those who take a supervised IQ test and score in the top 2% of the population. So membership proves that I am "very gifted" or "genius" level IQ, which I bring up when someone is talking to me like I am dumb, it's an easy way to get out of that conversation or for it to change tack quickly.

It also helps when the next movie I am trying out for has a character that is a very big twisted genius, after all you need a genius to play a genius. A guy of average intellect would not know the thought processes involved, though I to be sure most serious actors are of above average intellect.

So now you know my life purpose, well my life purpose for the next few years, I already have a plan that is in action, slowly I am already setting the foundations for me to leap into that new life purpose in about 5 years time (UPDATE: yes it's taking longer than my younger enthusiastic self thought)  - I am going to be an International Speaker, travelling the world and having people pay to listen to me talk. I guarantee you it'll be better than getting cornered by the drunk at the local pub.

Conan Stevens, Messiah of Prague?

Prague 2004 Already Joking About My Speaking Career

Not going to tell you everything, but that is something I have had in mind for about 10 years already when I had a massive flash of inspiration at a self development weekend, which shocked the heck out of everyone else attending, and I have been working towards since, but I need the fame as an Internationally famous actor to jump into that career at a level that interests me. 

What's Your Life Purpose? 

There, that is my life purpose in it's current form.

What is your life purpose? You need to sit down and think things through, it took me about 3 days solid, doing nothing else. Writing everything down helps, often you'll just start writing, it'll take on a life of it's own and all your accumulated thoughts will come flowing out - like it did for me writing this article, yes it is a little disjointed, but that is how my mind works.

Go wild in your mind, absolutely crazy what would you do if you could do anything, what would you do if someone gave you $100 million dollars? What would you do if you could get away from your current situation and start fresh? What sounds like it would be fun for the rest of your life?

Write it all down. Write and write and write for 3 days until you cannot write anymore. Leave it go for a swim, a run, some exercise and a good meal, come back and write some more. When you are finished and cannot write anything else. Put it away for 3 or 4 days. Go back to your notes and read it right through. Start crossing off the ones that are realistically impossible for you. I had to cross off Astronaut as my eyesight is not perfect after a childhood accident. 

Don't cross off the silly ones though. Now go through and spend time thinking about each one what life would be like as a rock star for example, sounds like a good lifestyle but then the hours of practise and rehearsing did not excite me, some people love playing an instrument, I don't. So cross off the ones that have a good outcome but the 'work' side of it does not excite you.

You will slowly come to a short list. You might have to take a few days off again where you do not even think about it, and come back in a peaceful time and sit for as long as it takes to find the one or two things that really excite you.

These are your potential life purpose choices. Weigh them up against each other. Can they be combined? For me my life purpose was Movie Star or Internet Marketer as my final choices, as you can see from this website I did sort of incorporate the two. I am an Actor who markets himself almost exclusively via the Internet. I do love working on the 'net and I love doing business meetings and making deals and negotiating, so I manage my own acting career.

What can you do? Yes my life purpose sounds exciting but it isn't for you, don't try to be me, be yourself, find what really excites you. Maybe like I did with Arnold Schwarzenegger you'll find a start point and/or inspiration. I wanted to get big and muscular (I wanted that before anyway but did not know how until I heard of Arnold and then bodybuilding) and I had wanted to be on TV more than anything since I was a teenager.

If you followed my advice it is right there in front of you. Now you need to sit down and write out the first steps you need to take to start making it happen. Don't worry about a full plan, "the universe" will fill that in via people you meet, experiences you have, jobs you do, books you read, etc. Just get started and do something everyday to get closer.

There now you know how to find your life purpose. Get to it, you should be damn excited right now, you have a bright new start at your future with fun, growth and achievement awaiting you. Your self purpose is calling.

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