Our next question in our self-reflection series is:
How do I want my life to look versus how do I want it to feel?
This is an interesting question as it lands smack down in the middle of our consumer-driven, keep-up-with-the-Jones’ societal messages. Our instinct might bring us to think about the house we live in or the car we drive, the brand names on our clothes or having ‘the best’ of something. This is how our life looks to others.
And yet how it feels is a better indicator of our own level of contentment. As the old saying goes, we can have all the money in the world, and more things than we can shake a stick at, and yet still be unhappy. When I think about how I want my life to feel, it includes:
- Simplicity. I like my house and car to be neat. It feels good to have things in their place, to not feel cluttered or scattered. I like being able to look outside and see trees and the river. My day always feels complete when I have walked in the forest.
- Colourful. When someone enters my space (whether at home or at my office), I want them to be able to get a sense of who I am. This includes the places that I have travelled which always includes colour. When I include trips as part of my yearly goal, my life feels colourful, adventurous.
- Whole. This comes from the quality time I spent with my loved ones. Family suppers, phone chats with treasured friends, quiet time with Kurt, strolls with Cricket, family time with the kids.
- Interesting. I want my life to feel interesting. This is where I try new things such as my virtual mission challenges, doing something creative or crafty, reading and learning.
Do I want my life to look a certain way? Sure; I think that our natural instinct is to care how it looks. But let’s not stay there too long, or give that too much time and space. Instead, let us focus on how we want our life to feel. Doing so will bring us the peace and contentedness that our soul is designed to draw us to.
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Photo credit: Me! This is a pic from the cottage we rented this summer.