Encourage :: Give Heart

{a drawing from the back of my notebook last night}

I just started reading a great book called Conscious Living by Gay Hendricks. In the section of the book that I read last night, Hendricks was talking about the importance of defining your purpose in life, he says, ” The great value of knowing your purpose is that it gives you an instant checkpoint for evaluating any action. Is this serving my purpose, or is it not?”

This of course got me thinking about my purpose. I’ve thought about this before, and I really never tire of thinking about these things. One word that came up for me during this exercise was the word “encourage.” I found myself intrigued by this word—I feel like it’s one of those words that has been overused and so has lost its original deep meaning. The most interesting part of it is the “cour” in the center—coming from the Latin word for heart “cor” (also this root is in “core” and “courage”). My little pocket dictionary defines encourage as “hearten.” The word basically means to me—to give heart. I think this is a beautiful thing to give—to tell someone (with your heart) that they can do what is in their heart, or to give love to their ideas—to believe in them with your heart.

This is why I started this blog a few years ago—to give heart to my art aspirations and to share that with other people so that they could do the same. In fact, this is really the purpose behind all of my art, and really my life.

In the book, Hendricks poses the following questions to help readers think about their purpose:

What do I most love to do?
What could engage me so deeply I’d never want to retire?
What am I really about?
What would be a purpose so grand that it could express itself through everything I do, from shoveling snow to making love to sitting on a bus?

(from Conscious Living by Gay Hendricks)

I especially love that last question. It takes the whole thing beyond work—it shows how you can live your purpose in every moment.

Here’s what I came up with last night/this morning:

My purpose is to live in expansive creative possibility and play, with ever-widening peace and love in my heart, and to inspire and encourage others to do the same.

I had a little trouble with the word “love” (another one of those words that has been majorly overused), but I couldn’t find another word that encompasses appreciation, awe, and kindness towards myself, every person, and this world, which is what I would like to live by. I also like the idea that you can rewrite your purpose whenever you want—it’s not set in stone. Right now, I’m trying this one on.

What’s your purpose? I hope these questions *encourage* and inspire you to find out!

Happy Day!

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4 Responses to “Encourage :: Give Heart”


  1. 1 Kerri December 13, 2010 at 1:45 am

    Oh I think about this all the time too! Have for years. I’m loving these questions Nicole. Which shows progress I guess. I used to be obsessed with having the answers. There’s something so wonderfully intriguing about a beautiful deep question to which you have not yet learnt the answer. Thank you for these x

  2. 2 rachel awes December 13, 2010 at 4:49 am

    i love your drawing
    in this purpose pondering…
    i see a building UP.
    i am so with you
    in this! xo

  3. 3 Geoff M. Pope December 19, 2010 at 7:57 am

    You’re probably not going to believe this: My purpose–woops, he keeps telling me not to lowercase his name–“It’s ‘Purpose,'” he says, “with a capital ‘P’.” Anyway, last week I took Purpose to his favorite dry cleaners (it’s called Core Cleaners–seriously), and when I went to pick him up yesterday, Purpose wasn’t there! “Can you check one more time?” I asked, pleading with the dry-cleaning attendant… (to be continued).

  4. 4 erasmith January 7, 2011 at 8:44 am

    I’ve been struggling with this question a lot lately. Is my purpose to do what I love for my work, or is it to work to sustain what I love? It’s an issue you’ve covered many times – what are you willing to sacrifice to make money and gain security, and does it have to be that way? Sigh. Hopefully I’ll figure out my purpose soon, or at least I’ll be comfortable with the one I’m trying on.


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Hello there! My name is Nicole K. Docimo, and I am an artist and writer from the U.S.A. but currently residing in Zurich, Switzerand. Thank you for visiting my blog!

Some Thoughts

"Be thirsty for the ultimate water,
and then be ready for what will
come pouring from the spring."
~Rumi

{from "Joy at Sudden Disappointment"
translated by C. Barks.}

~This Work ~

Unless otherwise noted, all images and writings on this blog were created by me, Nicole K. Docimo aka Blue Bicicletta. If you would like to share anything you see here for inspirational purposes online, I just ask that you kindly let folks know where you found it. If you are wanting to share/reproduce any of my work in any other way, or have any questions about how you will be sharing the work in relation to copyright, please contact me directly at nkdocimo {at} gmail {dot} com. Thanks!

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