I just commented on a post at Chris Guillabeau’s web site.
Here is that post (in response to the question…Something worth living for)
Something worth living for…hmm.
In thinking about how I would answer, a math concept comes to mind, namely, lowest common denominator.
Think back to your elementary school days (pretty far back for some of us). In order to solve certain problems it is necessary to find the lowest common denominator.
What can help us break down any situation or experience into smaller “pieces” to be handled and processed the same regardless of the contextual variations? I would say the answer to that question is principles.
You may have guessed where this is going next. Something worth living for (something that makes one’s life worthwhile) are principles. A core set of principles built on a foundation of “Do No Harm” can bring a lifetime of fulfillment and humble pleasure.
Is your life aligned with your internal compass? Regardless of the answer…
First, develop a personal mission statement. Make it ring true. I mean really, seriously true. This short statement, no more than three or four sentences, should be the summation of your purpose. What do you hold most dear? What is the number one goal in your life? If you can answer these two questions you will have successfully drafted a strong personal mission statement.
Now that you have your personal mission statement you need to take a current inventory of your life. Where are you in terms of your career? How healthy are your most intimate relationships? Make sure to conduct your inventory in relation to your personal mission statement. If you are honest with yourself you will sense areas where your life is not aligned with your personal mission statement.
You need to invest energy and time on each area you have identified as being out of alignment. Ask yourself this question, “What do I need to do to resolve this?”. Another useful question is, “How can I align this area of my life with my personal mission statement?”.
The course of action coming out of this exercise will vary from person to person and case to case. What is similar is that for every such introspection, without exception, some kind of action is required. The action can range from a mental “adjustment” of attitude or perspective to changing career paths or ending relationships.
The bottom line is this: Once you define where you want to go and, more importantly, how you want to get there, you have a guide or map to use along the way. On your journey you may find that your course corrections become less significant, perhaps even dropping down to minor nudges. The important thing is to keep a close eye on your current course as it compares to the path laid out in your personal mission statement.
With practice you will find that an inner navigator may rise up to whisper to you when a change in course is needed.
Yesterday I spent a lot of time in airports. Long delays on top of long lay-over’s equal time. At a certain point, after completing a few tasks for my “day job” and after reading a few pages in the new novel I recently picked up, I notice a little girl. Her mother is on a cell phone chatting to someone while the girl entertains herself. With nothing more than the environment around her this girl is able to occupy hours.
I watch as she plays with the “moving sidewalks”, with the artificial plants, with the rows of chairs… Any and everything around her is woven into the fabric of her play-time. While adults around me are on cell phones complaining about the delay or conversing with each other about the frustrations of travel, this little girl is enjoying the moments.
I am reminded of my recent readings about living in the moment(s). Somewhere along the way we, as adults, lose the ability, or desire, to truly live in the moment. In not being present, fragmenting our consciousness to multiple topics / tasks / etc. in a short period of time pushes us out from something. What is that something?
Do you ever experience a nagging little voice whispering to you? Let me clarify the context in which I am speaking. You make a choice, maybe a big one, that is life-changing. You have carefully weighed your options, considered the variables and started off in one direction. A few steps down the path you hear something. “Just something in the bushes.”, you think. “Maybe a chipmunk or a squirrel.”, you mumble to yourself.
A few more steps and you are sure it is not just a chipmunk because the noise is now a whispering voice of sorts. It is saying something. Maybe it speaks in a language that does need words. It speaks in whispers of emotion and mood. It speaks in energy.
You have heard the voice, we all have. It is your “true self” speaking. The “you” that can see beyond time, beyond the temporal, linear that most of us spend lives within. I think most of us minimize this voice. The “voice of reason” takes over our lives, directing our way. We forget about our passion. Maybe we fear what would happen if we were to act based on our true voice…what if we fail? What if we do not make enough money? I counter those questions with this one: What if we don’t follow our passion? The answer to that is long…to long for this post.
A quick post to rant about inconsiderate passengers on small air planes who insist on sitting with legs relaxed and “spread” into my half of the 24 inches both seats occupy. Worse yet…shoulder in my space too! To compensate I lean into the isle and get whacked every time someone walks by…ugh. So much for feeling enlightened, compassionate or connected!!!
I came across this note I made about a year ago during one of my more intense research phases.
I often find interesting references in the material I am reading. I try to follow these threads when time permits. This image to the left is an attempt to capture such a series of threads in a visual format.
It all started with a reference to a christian mystic by the name of Jakob Bohme. From there things flowed out to other mystics, Greek mythology, Italian humanist and renaissance philosophers and gnosticism.
There is no end. I stopped for two reasons. First I ran short on time to continue following the flow. Second, I ran out of paper!
There is truly is a connection between everything (and everyone)!