“I’ve been making a list of the things they don’t teach you at school.
They don’t teach you how to love somebody.
They don’t teach you how to be famous.
They don’t teach you how to be rich or how to be poor.
They don’t teach you how to walk away from someone you don’t love any longer.
They don’t teach you how to know what’s going on in someone else’s mind.
They don’t teach you what to say to someone who’s dying.
They don’t teach you anything worth knowing.”
― Neil Gaiman, The Sandman, Vol. 9: The Kindly Ones
Today’s my birthday.
And there’s a present that I want from you.
I want you to take your life to the next level of happiness. Because as you better your life, you better the world. And when you better the world, you better all of us.
Will you do that for me in this new year?
A new way of thinking about life
Here we are at the start of 2015.
Declarations of future intent.
Resolutions to change your behavior.
Statements of decisions.
For most of us, the start of a new year involves these things. It is a time when we make a list (usually in our heads) of all those things we’re supposed to do. It’s not that there’s a whole lot of contemplation going on. We know we should lose weight, so we declare we’re going to lose 5 pounds. We know we should stop smoking, so we resolve we won’t pick up a cigarette, again. We know we should save money, so we declare 10% of our gross income will be set aside for our future needs.
While these things are certainly important on one level, the fact remains that these are declarations, resolutions and statement about superficial things.
Think on these things
What if you just start doing what will make you healthier, richer, and more fulfilled? Do the obvious instead of making excuses why they aren’t going to happen or haven’t happened in the past.
With that out of the way, you now leave yourself the time and energy and emotional sustenance to reflect upon the truly important lessons you could learn this year.
So . . . here are some things to think upon —
1. What does happiness really mean for you? Most of us don’t know. In fact, most of us don’t even think about it. We go through life reacting to what comes our way and only then decide something makes us happy or makes us frown. Then we avoid what causes us pain and wait — yet again — for something that makes us smile to come along. I’m pushing you to actually take the time to learn what happiness is FOR YOU. Only then can you start calling the shots and responding in a way that is consistent with what you learn about your own happiness.
2. Why do you need validation from others to feel like a success? We all do. And those of you who say you don’t care what others think are trying to pull a fast one on the rest of us, at best, or kidding yourselves, at worst. We all seek to be part of a community. We’re wired to seek external confirmation of what we internally think, believe, do, and feel. It’s helps us to keep score. Let’s stop running away from the need for others to affirm we’re okay and start running towards what that type of affirmation does for you. When we learn what we are seeking from others, we start to awaken to what we can provide for ourselves.
3. Why does silence concern us? We live in a time when things move faster than ever before. I used to joke that we live in an MTV world — fast cuts and strange angles that capture and keep our attention. Now we live in a world of Twitter-like sound bites and YouTube-like instant images. Our cell phones have tethered us to as much information and stimulation as we can handle and desire. We’ve conditioned ourselves to think (not necessarily feel) all the time. It’s time we learn to put back some silence and alone-time into our lives.
4. Why don’t you know what you want? Much like happiness, this is one of those questions that asks you to go beyond the obvious. Can you actually tell me what you want? Really? You may think you know what you want. If you’re one of those people who can tell the world what that is, ask these questions: What will getting [whatever it is you want] bring me? How will my life be different once I get it? Most of us know what we want from time-to-time and the find that those wants shift and morph and change. THAT’S NATURAL. Take the time to reflect upon all the important things you’ve wanted in your life and find the pattern that exists there. There’s a structure to what you wish for. And in that pattern is your real desire.
5. Why are you miserable? We suffer. We complain. We’re uncomfortable in the life we’re living. And damn if we haven’t become experts at snarling up our own lives. Do you want to live that way for the rest of your life? Perhaps it’s time to learn why you sabotage your own success and happiness. Once you make that discovery, you can always return to your complicated life (if that actually serves you well) or you can then choose a different way of doing things.
These questions are designed to reveal some of Life’s greatest lessons. Treat the questions with reverence as they lead to the sacredness of you. During 2015 we’ll be exploring even more profound, fun, and magical ideas to make this new year your best year, yet.
Stay tuned. The adventure is about to get even better.
And make sure to subscribe at http://thinkingmagically.com or post your comments or create a new conversation on Facebook, Google+ or LinkedIn and together we can create even more magic in the world. I can’t wait to read about your success in making magic your own super power.
Remember, though, it all begins with an inner transformation and dedication to making magic a habit.