The on-purpose person, making your life make sense : A book review

Every now and again we stop and wonder about our purpose. What is it? Am I still living according to ‘the plan’? Hang on, what is ‘the plan’? Is there more out there? Why do I feel off course? Why am I alive in this time and place in history? If these questions or similar are buzzing in your head, firstly you are not alone. According to an article by Zane Benefits 75% of employees feel off course. Secondly, you probably will appreciate some time with this book written in the style of a modern day parable by Kevin W. McCarthy.

The on-purpose person
The on-purpose person

This parable is told through the eyes of an unnamed man simply called the Man. This executive, husband and father is a character most of us can relate to and you will probably hear yourself speaking through him every so often. Then again this could be said for all the characters in a sense. The chances are you can think of a number of people you know who fit the description to some extent.

Warning: if you want to do reading this book justice you will probably need to read it more than once.

The Good

This is an easy read, but do not be fooled. Expect a lot of ‘stop and go’ as you put the book down to highlight, think (many hmmmmmm moments) and maybe even share. It is written as a parable and that makes all the difference if you are tired of your usual business/inspirational/self-help-bordering-on-text-book type book or could do with a little fiction in your life. The Man asks questions and has feelings we can all identify with. Stick with it till the end and you will want to answer some questions about your own life.

Through out the book we wondered about the author’s faith or book’s leanings as it is not overtly christian. This gets answered right at the end.

The Bad

Books written in parable style and, like musicals, may not be for everyone. In addition every now and again the characters seemed contrived but the point comes across clearly. However if you don’t identify with a character, conversation or situation you may start losing focus.

The Ugly

Nothing really.

Quotable quotes

The book is brimming over with quotable quotes. We especially enjoyed the ones at the beginning of every chapter. Here are a few:

‘”Purpose is the energy of your spirit,” the Professor went on.” Discover your purpose, be on-purpose, and the significance and meaning of your life will shine like a bulb connected to the power source.”‘

‘….it is 100 percent your responsibility to discover your purpose. Anything less is just people-pleasing.’

‘Until you value yourself, you will not value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it. – M. Scott Peck, MD (1936 – 2005) The Road Less Traveled’

‘Your life has inherent meaning and worth, no matter what your condition or situation.’

‘Regret is a futile practice unless it becomes a motivator for redesigning one’s future.’

‘Balance is a myth. Forget about it. Instead, integrate your life through your purpose so you’re on-purpose.’


We gave this book a 7/10.

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