“Making a living and making a life sometimes point in opposite directions.”
“I think many of us have the sensation that we’re standing about two inches away from a huge screen, and it’s noisy and it’s crowded and it’s changing with every second, and that screen is our lives. And it’s only by stepping back, and then further back, and holding still, that we can begin to see what the canvas means and to catch the larger picture. And a few people do that for us by going nowhere.”
“So, in an age of acceleration, nothing can be more exhilarating than going slow. And in an age of distraction, nothing is so luxurious as paying attention. And in an age of constant movement, nothing is so urgent as sitting still. So you can go on your next vacation to Paris or Hawaii, or New Orleans; I bet you’ll have a wonderful time. But, if you want to come back home alive and full of fresh hope, in love with the world, I think you might want to try considering going nowhere.”
“Courage is being scared to death and saddling up anyway.”
In this TED talk Priya Parker claims that most people stay in their current jobs from fear. Fear, however prevents progress. In order to progress and move forward, Priya suggests to “Quit Life.”
In order to get a better perspective of our lives, we must step back in order to see clearly. Priya offers 7 tests to help clarify individual goals.
Write a 600 word obituary for yourself. Think about how you would like to be remembered and then work backwards to create that kind of life.
Passion Comic Strip
Draw a comic strip of the things that you are passionate about. Ask friends for ideas.
Get comfortable with discomfort
Do some of the following to test your comfort level:
1. while waiting in line start singing
2. take yourself out to dinner and sit alone
3. walk into an elevator and keep facing the back wall
Give Yourself a Life Sentence
Write a mission statement indicating your values or qualities and why you do what you do.
Dwindling Cash Experiment
Figure how much money you spend each month. For the next 4 weeks live on a percentage of that total.
1st week – 40% of total
2nd week – 30% of total
3rd week – 20% of total
4th week – 10% of total
How much money do you really need?
Help someone else
Spend an hour with 5 different friends and offer them help solving problems in their business.
Set a withdrawal date
Send invitations to a party letting everyone know you are quitting life and re-booting.
I started this blog a few years ago. After just a couple of posts the blog remained untouched as my focus was forced to shift to other areas in my life, particularly the fall-out of a long and difficult divorce.
I think of John Lennon’s lyrics, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” The interesting thing about time is that it continues to pass, regardless of what we are doing.
Hopefully, through this blog (and others I have started like One Loaf of Bread), I have posted ideas that have been useful to you. I hope it helps you laugh, cry, reach new heights, reevaluate time and realize that every second counts. I am reminded of this on a daily basis.
A BIG THANKS to everyone who has sent me messages and given me support.
You are the best!
Thanks also to the many unknown friends who stop by and read the blog.
I recently saw Soul Pancake’s Experiment in Gratitude and I want to share the video with you. It is 7 minutes, but definitely worth it.
Who has influenced you the most?
Express your gratitude to that person! It will make your day!
Candy Chang started an amazing project in her community by asking the question “Before I Die I Want To . . .” and then allowing the public to answer the question.
The project has expanded to various locations around the world as well as Candy Chang’s website
I think it is important to consider this question and then contemplate another question: Am I living a life that really matters?
In the following TED talk, Candy states that “Two of the most important things that we have is our time and our relationships with other people.”
It is important to find ways to maintain our perspective and remember that life is brief. Candy’s project is a creative way to maintain that perspective.
I love the following entertaining TED talk with Benjamin Zander discussing the power of classical music.
(I am one of the 10-year-olds he refers to who gave up on the piano . . .)
Benjamin claims there are 3 major groups:
1. The first group is absolutely passionate about classical music. They listen to it all of the time, attend the symphony and they have children who play musical instruments. This is the smallest group.
2. The second group doesn’t mind classical music. They come home from a long day, take a glass of wine and put their feet up with a little Vivaldi in the background. (I fall into this group with an occasional trip to the symphony).
3. The third group never listen to classical music. It is simply not part of their lives. They might hear it like second-hand smoke at the airport and maybe a little bit of a march from Aida when they come into the hall, but otherwise they never hear it. This is the largest group of people.
Benjamin Zander wants everyone to understand and love classical music. His enthusiasm is contagious in this 20 minute talk.
Classical Music is for Everyone!
I’m reminded of Billy Collins poem Piano Lessons where he writes:
“I am learning to play
“It Might as Well Be Spring”
but my left hand would rather be jingling
the change in the darkness of my pocket
or taking a nap on an armrest.
I have to drag him into the music
like a difficult and neglected child.
This is the revenge of the one who never gets
to hold the pen or wave good-bye,
and now, who never gets to play the melody.”
The following story has been retold many times on various blogs. I think I first read it in My Personal MBA. This past week I was reminded of the story when I saw it posted on Life Edited.
I like this story because it teaches a valuable lesson about determining priorities and goals.
I believe that true happiness comes from doing what we love.
The fisherman in the story found his dream and he is able to live it without being influenced by the rest of the world.
“Once, a powerful executive went on vacation – his first in 15 years. As he was exploring a pier in a small coastal fishing village, a tuna fisherman docked his boat. As the Fisherman lashed his boat to the pier, the Executive complimented him on the size and quality of his fish.
“How long did it take you to catch these fish?” the Executive asked.
“Only a little while,” the Fisherman replied.
“Why don’t you stay out longer and catch more?” the Executive asked.
“I have enough to support my family’s needs,” said the Fisherman.
“But,” asked the Executive, “what do you do with the rest of your time?”
The Fisherman replied,“I sleep late, fish a little, play with my kids, take a siesta with my wife, and stroll into the village each evening, where I sip wine and play guitar with my friends. I have a full and busy life.”
The Executive was flabbergasted. “I’m a Harvard MBA, and I can help you. You should spend more time fishing. With the proceeds, you could buy a bigger boat. A bigger boat would help you catch more fish, which you could sell to buy several boats. Eventually, you’d own an entire fleet.
“Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you could sell directly to the consumers, which would improve your margins. Eventually you could open your own factory, so you’d control the product, the processing, and the distribution. Of course, you’d have to leave this village and move to the city so you could run your expanding enterprise.”
The fisherman was quiet for a moment, then asked, “How long would this take?”
“Fifteen, twenty years. Twenty-five, tops.”
The Executive laughed. “That’s the best part. When the time is right, you’d take your company public and sell all of your stock. You’d make millions.”
“Millions? What would I do then?”
The Executive paused for a moment. “You could retire, sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take a siesta with your wife, and stroll into the village every evening to sip wine and play the guitar with your friends.”
Find A Way To Start Enjoying Life Now