Over the years as an educator, I often told my students what I think is a pretty sound strategy for being happy and feeling purposeful. I told them it’s a secret, but really it’s not. It’s pretty simple, although lots of things conspire to make it complicated. Here’s how it works:
1) Identify something you want to achieve in the future that excites you now.
Pay attention to that second part — the “excites you now” part. It’s critical that what you want in the future fills you with excitement in the present. And, listen, it can’t be what someone else wants for you. In fact, it needs to be something that YOU not only want, it has to be something that gets you FIRED UP today.
2) Take one step today that moves you along the path to achieving that thing you want in the future.
It need not be huge, just that it gets you closer to it. After taking that step, reflect on the information you got from that step and re-evaluate what you want to achieve in the future. Has it changed in any way with this new knowledge? If so, adjust what you want to achieve accordingly.
3) Continue this day by day, doing a new thing each day that moves you toward what you want.
Consider the new information you get and adjust your future goal to it, making sure you remain excited by it in the present. When you do this, opportunities will start to appear to you, sometimes seemingly out of the blue, things related in some way to who you want to be. To who you ARE.
4) When these opportunities appear, accept them. Say yes.
This is very important, learning to recognize opportunities and saying yes to them. Some will seem odd, at first. Soon, though, you’ll discover that it’s all part of a bigger unfolding that began when you turned inward and started prioritizing and giving weight to what excites you.
Following these four steps, you’ll find you’re actually living the life you want to live now and not waiting for that future achievement to be reached. That goal, that thing that excites you, only serves to get you moving in a particular direction. Staying tuned to it and adjusting it so it continues to excite you takes care of the rest.
Does any of this resonate with you? If so, please reach out! Maybe you’ll be part of an opportunity for me, and/or maybe I’ll be part of one for you.
Besides, I love hearing from people.