If You Had a Choice: What Would You Want to Do With The Rest of Your Life?
Is It Really About Riches?
We all want to matter in some shape or form.
I believe that is why so many persons strive to be rich; because, being rich is an outward symbol of "being worth something"... but is having riches what it is all about? Can we be worth something without riches?
Consider that many famous people were not wealthy in their lifetime. Those famous people lived their lives as they wanted to regardless of wealth and even ignored fame though many found it posthumously. Hardly something to make one happy ... Posthumous fame is not worth much on a personal level!
Working life often interferes with what we would rather be doing. I certainly found that to be true. Work is essential for providing the necessities of life and that is a worthy pursuit. Food on the table IS important. A career can provide a great living and all the trappings that go with it.
However, life devoted to just to work can be draining... unless your work is your calling!
My own remedy has always been to have interests outside of work that made up for the lack of creativity at work...because creativity drives me; it is what makes me want to get up in the morning raring to discover something new. My own desire to learn or discover something new would not necessarily work for you though. We are all, thankfully different!
What works for each individual is specific to what is of interest to you.
I enjoy drawing!
I enjoy the beauty of nature in the smallest flower
Is Your Dream Impractical?
Remember that even if it sounds silly to others, if it isn't silly to you...you go and get it done:
"That lawn ornament made of beer bottle caps will give you a good night's sleep at the very least.
The garden, your spouse builds around it, trying to hide it may just draw in the crowds!"
(quote by Scribenet)
"When a man does not know what harbor he is making for, no wind is the right wind." ~Seneca
Most of us do not have the luxury of devoting our lives to what interests us. Perhaps we do not even know what our purpose in life should be, even if we have the means to pursue it. That is often the dilemma... what do we love? What puts the light in our eyes? Often society busily tells us what we should do. Passion can get lost.
Sometimes in my busier days I use to think my purpose in life was shopping.
Seriously, that is when I would truly loose myself and forget about my worries until I checked my bank account...lol.
In those days, I enjoyed shopping as a way to unwind as I am sure many busy women and men do. However, in later years, I have discovered the folly of too much shopping and began to reverse that trend. Most definitely, I ran out of space then realized...no...shopping is not my calling!
Besides, I would suggest, shopping really is the siren call from advertisers, not your own voice....LOL
Martha Graham had it Right
Quite a few years back I read the following quote in Oprah's magazine, "O". I clipped it out and kept it framed for a time. Eventually I wrote it down on a card I refer to once in awhile and even have passed it on to a granddaughter. It has been an inspiration for many years and something that speaks to me about finding purpose in life.
The quote I refer to is from Martha Graham, the famous dancer. I would like to share it now:
"There is a vitality, a life-force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and be lost..."
This is what is usually found on the net, but there is more to the quote that I think is worth reading:
The quote goes on..."The world will not have it. it is not your business to determine how good it is; nor how valuable it is; nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours, clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware of urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open."
The complete quote is from Martha Graham as told to Agnes de Mille in "Dance to the Piper".
A Quote from George Bernard Shaw
"This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one; the being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap; the being a force of nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy." ~George Bernard Shaw
What is Your Unique Perspective?
I know people who are great bakers, seamtressses, carpenters and gardeners. One of my aunt's didn't seem to have a great purpose in life as far as anyone could tell... but she could grow gorgeous, amazing plants like no one else. I remember her vegetable gardens were something to behold...neat rows and beds of perfect vegetables and not a weed in sight.
My mother could get lost in sewing...she was an awesome seamstress completely self-taught and she never earned a living from her calling.
Some people are good with facts, some people light up the world with their humor, as did my late husband. I remember his humor vividly.
Whatever, your skill or calling, no one else will do it exactly as you will..so go ahead, knock yourself out! Your friends and family will identify you with your expression in life...your unique perspective.
Our world will be richer for it.
Have I Found My Unique Voice in Life?
I have been fortunate in my working life. That is a blessing. I enjoyed work but felt it lacked the specific feeling of a "calling".
I had followed my instincts in choosing chemistry in college, an interest that I was able to enjoy throughout a modest career. I also ran my own sign business with my late husband for a number of years and that came very close to being a calling since I could forget to eat as I worked on projects... and it had a very strong creative factor. There was the satisfaction of being part of a team...but was that a calling?
At this stage of life, I am exploring all those things I had no time for in my younger days. I moved away from the big city and my hours of long commutes have ceased as well as the huge expenses of living that life. I live frugally. I have decided to do what I love: learning, writing, researching, gardening and art. Now they all play a huge part in my every day life. So much, I sometimes lose track of time.
What have I accomplished? Nothing so much as anyone can tell.
However, the saying goes: "It is the journey that counts; not the destination! Then I am on the right path!
I sort of like this particular road trip.
Thanks Martha Graham!