Good Morning Beautiful People,
As the saying goes ‘the early bird gets the worm’..
and since giving up booze, processed food, and now non essential shopping (which you can read about in my previous blog ‘A Year of Less-Day One’) my replacement in their place has been exercise: more specifically long runs fueled by early bed times and inspiring podcasts.
The subject that has been on my heart, cued on my Spotify, and in my pile of borrowed books from the library- is how can I slow down, take in more of what matters, and go about striving to live a more intentional and meaningful life.
My newest reading touches on just that entitled ‘Slow: Simple Living for a Frantic World’ by Brooke McAlary.
In her first Chapter rightfully named ‘Start With Why’ she has an exercise at the end answering either 5 question such as..
- What is important to me?
- What do I want to leave behind?
- What don’t I want to leave behind?
- What do I want people to say about me?
- What regrets do I want to avoid?
Or you can do the less ‘friendly’ more in your face version in which you are asked to write a 3 sentence eulogy that you wish to be read when goodness forbid you leave this planet.
The exercises get you basically to do the same thing: evaluate your life right now in this very moment and then what you are wanting it to reflect at the end of it as a whole. If these ‘end game’ answers to your questions or sentences in your eulogy don’t reflect what you are truly living like/representing/prioritizing now.. what makes you think in years to come those sentences and answers will be a true depiction of your time here?
The good news if you are finding your answers and questions don’t match your final exam: The great thing this exercise does..
is it makes you more self aware and have a blueprint of what you want to live by and what you want your life to look like. If you know what you want to be said/done/accomplished / and truly represented in the final days of your life- you are able to change the trajectory of your life right now- today- by making things on your list that a priority and pushing everything else to the side.
For Example I obviously choose the less friendly path- and wrote a 3 sentence Eulogy to which I found was harder to sum up what you want out of your life in just mere 3 sentences ( which I of course did run on sentences -because if you have followed my post know that my friends- is what I do best).
Jess was warm, kind, real, giving, mostly light and love, but just the right amount of go F yourself too. She was an exceptional mother, wife, friend, and always strived to better herself every day one single action at a time- never settling for ‘okay’ or taking this life for granted. She followed her passions, heart, and callings – inspiring others to do the same and be seen and hear as well in order to make this world a better place & the struggling souls out there feel not so alone.
You know what wasn’t in my eulogy , what never crossed my mind as I wrote those sentences:
- how clean my floors are
- how flat my post kids belly is
- a Pinterest worthy Christmas Morning or Tooth Fairy Dollar
- how many likes my blog post got
- my bank account balance
- having a skincare regiment that keeps wrinkles at bay
- clothes and shoes
- what others think of my dreams
- how organized my pantries are
- kids extracurricular activities
- how shiny and white my teeth show up in my curated instagram feed
And unfortunately throughout my life I have spent an unflattering amount of hours worrying about these things, trying to forget, disguise, or trying to remedy them. I never valued them to be the most important things in my life, but I often lived like they were.
My family, friends, and purpose. Fun, travel, fulfillment, laughter, creativity, generosity. This is what a meaningful life looks like for me.
The question this exercise made me ask myself ‘Am I living a life right now that would represent that if I were to fast-forward about fifty years?’
And up until recently pouring into this personal development I could and would have answered the most sobering answer of all ‘No’.
Too much of my time I have spent worrying about the former list and not enough of my time spent focusing on the later.
So it is from this exercise and my journey to being the best version of myself everyday … that I make the conscious decision to focus on living a life with those things that truly matter at the center. By making these things that matter a priority god willing in seventy years from now… every word in my Eulogy will read true as a complete utter depiction of my time spent here on earth.
I challenge you to answer those same 5 questions or write your Eulogy yourself. The great thing about this life is– like the quote by Scott Fitzgerald states that I view every day..
‘I hope you life a life you are proud of. If you find that you are not. I hope you have the courage to start all over again.’
That’s all until next time.