Today I had a close-up view of a glacier. I’m still awestruck and amazed to see something that beautiful and thousands of years old, in the magnificent country of New Zealand. Accordingly, this seemed like the perfect time to write about living your life with more passion and energy. I realize that my experience today is not a broadly accessible one. So my question is, what can and will you do this year to reconnect yourself with a vibrant life?
About halfway through 2019, I realized I was somewhat disconnected from my passions. I have been doing work that is energizing and have loving and supportive personal connections. Yet I was feeling that I was missing some *zing* in my day-to-day life. Despite having personal and professional satisfaction, or maybe even partly because of it, I had fallen into a routine and comfort zone. I have always said that I want to live my life today and not at some future point, like after I retire. I realized that I had to remind myself of what gives me energy and to do those things more often. So I’m inviting you to determine what is achievable for you, right now, this year, to bring more vibrancy to your every week or every day.
First, remind yourself (or discover for the first time) what energizes you, brings you joy, gives you purpose, or taps into your passions. Set aside some time to answer these questions. Or ask a friend to be your listening partner while you reflect on:
- What did you really love doing when you were a child, before the obligations and responsibilities of an adult life?
- What do you enjoy doing as an adult, that you have lost touch with?
- What are your values and intrinsic (internal) motivators?
- What would it mean for you to live an authentic life? What would you be doing, where, and with whom?
- Describe an event or period in your life when you were at your best or most alive. What about that experience was energizing?
Second, turn this reflection into doing. What did you discover or re-discover about yourself? How does that translate to specific actions to bring this learning into being? For example, if you realize that you want to reconnect with nature regularly, what form will this take? More importantly, what is do-able? You may not have the time, capacity, or resources to drive to the mountains for a weekend retreat. But what about a walk in your local park with your shoes off? I love cats but as an adult am too allergic to have them in my home. So in 2020, I plan to volunteer with my local animal rescue center (which needs people to play with their kittens – win/win).
Third, make it happen. What will you do today, tomorrow, and over the next year to live a more energized and joyful life? Make specific commitments to yourself, and put them on your calendar. If you write down your commitments, you are more likely to actually achieve them. The odds go up even more if you share them with a supportive friend.
It can be easy to fall into a routine, as I know first-hand. By sharing my own experience, I hope you remind yourself of what gives you energy and joy and bring more of that into your life each day. Here’s to a vibrant 2020!