After showing you to the Puzzle Exercise last week, I want to give you another simple tool today that will help you in listening to your heart.
How can this make a difference in your life?
Most people don’t know what makes them happy. They grow up learning that life is no walk in the park – and that they have to sacrifice their aliveness in order to have success.
However, this isn’t true. Life can be an exciting adventure, filled with passion, joy, and deeply intimate connections. What’s more, if you want to have a really fantastic life, you have to do the things you love, all the time. Oh, my …
To say it in Steve Jobs words: “There is no reason not to follow your heart.”
What if you don’t know what your heart wants?
Start by finding out what lights you up. It’s the first step in the direction of play, fun, passion, and will ultimately guide you in finding what you love, your gift, your essence, your art – or whatever fancy term you want to give it – the reason you were born.
Take a blank notebook and for one week record all the things that light you up: These are events, actions, people, places, movies, books, etc. that make you feel good about yourself, that open your heart, enliven you, and lift you up. For example, your dog greeting you when you get back from a long day at work, an unexpected letter from a friend, a nice comment on your blog post, walking in nature, taking a hot bath, getting something done that you have been procrastinating on, etc.
Write all this down in the front section of your notebook.
In the back section of your notebook, record the things that don’t light you up: The events, actions, people, places, articles, movies, etc. that make you feel tense, close down your heart, dampen your spirit, and generally make you feel bad about yourself. For example, running into ‘you know who’ at work, a nagging phone call, a pile of papers on your desk that needs to be tackled, an article about our economy, being stuck in traffic, thinking about your debt, etc.
For one week, just observe how things impact your aliveness: What’s lighting you up, and what’s bringing you down. In the long run, you want to put more and more of what brings you joy into your life and start weeding out the stuff that doesn’t.
To let me know how it goes and feel free to share your experience in the comments section below or simply write to me. I’d love to hear from you.
Thank you for reading,