Question: So who determines whether or not you are living a meaningful life?
Answer: Ultimately, you do of course, though you might like your family or close friends to agree with you!
Question: So what is a meaningful life?
Answer: Whatever you want it to be!
Questions: Well what if my life is not going quite the way I wanted it to? What if I don’t have the job I want or my business is not going as well as it should? What if I don’t earn what I think I should? What if my marriage or my relationship isn’t working out or has just broken up? What if I never get to go on the vacations I want? What if I don’t like where I live? What if I don’t have the friendships I want? What if I just feel miserable?
Answer: Wow – tough questions, but really, the first step is to define which of these areas are working for you and which ones either aren’t working, or could be improved.
[Image courtesy of AKARAKI at freedigitalphotos.net]
Ok so here are a couple of questions for you – have you made time for yourself? Have you made time to step back, think about your life and figure out what is your life’s purpose?
One of the gurus of Life Coaching, Tony Robbins, said the following in his ‘Get The Edge’ programme:
“Nothing in life has any meaning except the meaning we give it. If you don’t like the way you feel, choose to create a new meaning.”
– Tony Robbins
Sometimes we can be so busy dealing with all of the everyday ‘stuff’ in life that we don’t stop long enough to examine our actual situation, to take stock of where we are at in relation to the dreams we started out with. We can feel unfulfilled or even unhappy without really knowing why.
Years ago I heard a coach called John Higgs talking about the difference between people who have an internal locus of control and those who have an external locus of control.
Those with an external locus of control believe that ‘things just happen’ to them, or to use that famous bumper sticker slogan – ‘shit happens’.
They believe also that there is nothing they can really do to change their life. It just is the way it is.
Those with an internal locus of control believe that life is what they choose to make of it, that they can set goals, make decisions and take action to effect change, to make their life what they want it to be.
Cynics might argue that no-one can control everything that happens to them. What if you have an accident and find yourself injured for example?
That’s true – we can’t control everything that happens, but to you use that as an excuse to do nothing is a cop out.
What you can control is the way you choose to react to what happens to you – the bad along with the good.
Tony Robbins went on to say that sometimes the Universe wants us to fail in our attempts to reach a goal, because it will teach us another lesson and perhaps make us stronger in the process, thus perhaps availing us of new opportunities.
He reminded us that, “The real purpose of a goal is what it makes of us in the pursuing of it – the person we become”.
Last weekend I had a three hour drive each way to attend a friend’s wedding in Margaret River. I took the opportunity during the drives to re-listen to two old tapes that are as valid as they were when I bought them a decade ago.
Motivational speaker, Jim Rohn said that when he found himself at a point in his life where he realised he was unhappy at his lack of achievement and regarded himself his a failure, he began a quest for knowledge so he could change it. The conclusion he reached in his speech from 17 years ago, was that the opportunities are there for all of us in our western world if we would only apply ourselves and read the free books we need to, study the people who have achieved the things we seek to achieve and most importantly, to learn from our mistakes and other peoples’ mistakes. In short, Jim Rohn said, “If life is not blowing you in the direction you want, then learn to set a better sail’.
“If life is not blowing you in the direction you want, then learn to set a better sail’.
The other tape was of Doctor Wayne Dwer, a celebrated author and motivational speaker, entitled ‘When I believe it, I’ll see it’.
He spoke also about the opportunities with which we are so blessed. He introduced his family to the audience right at the start of his speech and explained that they are the most important thing in the world to him, they are his inspiration and his source of motivation.Dr Wayne Dyer stated: ‘The state of your life is nothing more than a reflection of your state of mind.’
“The state of your life is nothing more than a reflection of your state of mind.”
Dr Wayne Dyer
So, if you want a life of meaning, make some time to sit alone and think. Reflect on where you are now and where you would like to be in the future. Which things are truly important to you?
Write it all down – the good and the bad. You may be surprised at what comes out!
Only when you realise where you want to head can you work out a course to get there.
Good luck. You can do it. If you’d like some help, don’t hesitate to contact me.