The Importance of Meaning

Editor’s Note: today is my birthday.

I am a big believer in the magic of birthdays. I like to think the universe pays closer attention to you, and your powers to manifest your desires are stronger. Last year at this time I was just coming out of a breakup, and my heart was exploding in manic fits of joy and possibility as I launched my online coaching program and felt for the first time like my life had purpose. This has been the most insane and magical year of my life, with many of the highest highs I’ve ever experienced. Today my soul is vibrating with love and gratitude for every single aspect of my journey, but this time I feel calm and grounded. I know who I am this year. I know what I want, and what I stand for. I know the message I am supposed to be spreading. So today, when my powers are strongest, I’ve decided to address you with that message directly.

 

Dear Fellow Humans,

You are far more powerful than you think you are. You have within you extraordinarily unique and perfect gifts that are the result of every single collective moment of your life. You are capable of changing the world for the better, of captivating and elevating everyone you meet, and of manifesting your deepest desires.

But if you want access to that power, then you must consciously tend to it.

The baseline from which this power comes, the bare minimum requirement for carrying a powerful life force, is a healthy body.  You are the captain of a powerful ship. And many of you are letting that ship sink.

When you are physically drained, you don’t have enough energy left over to expand yourself emotionally or mentally. When your life force is low (from stress, sickness, a hangover, sleep-deprivation, etc), your body must focus on repairing itself, so all other purposes on earth must be put temporarily on hold. Some people will live their entire lives in this state, constantly so distracted by trying to repair their physical vessel that they can never reach higher, live bigger, offer the world their gifts, or pursue their passions. There is safety in sickness just as there is safety in comfort.

But I know you can do better. And I’m asking that you try. 

Because having a low life force isn’t just bad for you. It’s also bad for humanity. When your life force is low, you can’t look up and see all the incredible magic that is constantly surrounding you. You can’t spend your love and energy on other people who are desperately in need of it, because you never have enough to spare. You can’t offer humanity your gifts, because you’re barely keeping your shit together a dull level of “I’m fine.” 

But you’re not fine. You may be “normal,” but not fine. You’re stressed. You’re anxious. You’re under-rested and over-extended, you’re filling your body up with garbage, and at least some part of you has started to believe that nasty little voice inside your head that  says you’re not good enough. Your physical health and your emotional health are inextricably linked, so prioritizing your health, sleep, fitness, nutrition, and rest, is just as important as prioritizing your passion, purpose, love, connection, and pleasure.

Doing your best to treat yourself and your body well will provides a baseline from which you have the energy to extend yourself further and create a meaningful life. A life with no purpose is characterized by a chronic sense of apathy, sluggishness, and resignation. A life without meaning is a life of disorder and illness: mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. 

I believe we are in the middle of a national crisis of meaninglessness. We’ve been taught that we are entitled to the high self-worth that comes from living a meaningful life, but we haven’t been taught to do the work to make it meaningful. So we suffer, and find any way possible to distract ourselves form our own untapped potential.

But the wonderful thing about “Meaning” is that you get to invent your own. We humans have been searching throughout history to discover the official Meaning of Life. And if one of those calls to you, great! But if not, that doesn’t mean you need to go without. Because we will probably never know the official truth… and nor should we.

The meaning of your life is in your hands.

Your interpretation of your own purpose on earth is made up (just like our perception of what others think about you), so I am asking you to do the inner work required to find Meaning that you can believe in. Go deep. Spend the time. Process it however you need to in order to find it. It doesn’t need to be religious or even spiritual. But it must align with your deepest core values, and it must light a fire in your belly.

I ask that you seek and add Meaning to your life mercilessly and unapologetically. Because along with Meaning comes a new level of energy, joy, gratitude, and respect. Along with Meaning comes everything you’ve been seeking in a juice cleanse, a size zero, or a six pack. Along with Meaning comes the belief that by simply being You and pursuing your purpose, you matter. The world needs you to believe you matter, because that belief will dictate how you approach your life, your family, your job, and every single moment of every single day you’re alive.

When you believe your life has meaning, you are able to stop judging others, because you can see the abundance of unique gifts that each person has to offer. When you believe you matter, you can lead by example and inspire others to do the same. And in this way, through ever-increasing circles of influence, you can elevate the world.

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This year I have fallen deeply in love with mankind, and have seen over and over that each person has a unique energy and gift to offer. If you do not share those gifts, the world will go without them forever, and I cannot bear that. When we suffer through life with our gifts stuck inside us, unseen and unloved, we spend our entire lives in pain, searching for distractions to keep us from having to face the seemingly random and chaotic meaninglessness of it all. I constantly see misguided and never-ending quests for physical “perfection” taking the place of the internal sense that a person matters. I wish desperately I could tell every person on earth that you are crucial, and that I personally need you. You have gifts that myself and all of humanity need, that only you can offer, because they are uniquely yours.

So this is my birthday wish: I ask you to seek Meaning within your authentic Self, unique story, and deepest passions. Find and share your gifts with the world.

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By the way, the meaning of my life, my passion and purpose (which brings me the kind of joy and gratitude and energy that I never knew was possible) is helping other people unlock theirs. Your body is the ship from which you sail your entire life’s journey. Your body deserves to be honored and treated well, not for a 6-pack or a thigh gap, but in service of something greater. What that “greater” is, is up to you. But I will be here for you as you seek it.

Yours in gushing light and love,

Jessi


I am passionate about helping women learn to love their bodies. That includes unlearning what a woman “should” be, feeling empowered and confident in yourself, embracing your authentic power, and creating a life so kick-ass and beautiful that you hardly have any time or energy left over to think about how your body looks. 😉

That’s why I created 

The Empowered Women Project

— for women like you, who are sick of being judged for what you look like, and want to focus instead on all the amazing things you can do and be.

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  • Ten_4_Ten

    Thank you for this. I really really needed to hear/read this over and over and over
    (x 1000) until it’s not so surprising/daunting/overwhelming. I really appreciate you! Gina

    • Jessi Kneeland

      I’m so happy to hear that, thank you!! <3

  • Jonathan Angelilli

    What a beautiful journey. What an honor to witness your re-birth and transformation. Happy birthday, you are 1 year old today 🙂 May you fall deeper and deeper in love with the world, and by doing so, may your message of self-love through movement empower countless others to start living fully.

    • Jessi Kneeland

      <3

  • Karen Moreno Lindley

    That was great….. i needed to read this today…….

    • Jessi Kneeland

      Thank you for sharing, I’m glad you liked it! 🙂

  • John Paul Jones

    “Fuckin’ A, Bubba.” Don’t worry, it’s a line from the movie “The Right Stuff.” Great post, nice to see a ray of sunshine on the Internet

    • Jessi Kneeland

      Thanks! 🙂

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