Not too long ago, I turned 50. I remember thinking, wholly-molly, life is going by pretty fast ten years before that, when I turned 40.
Now, it’s not so much about life going by fast or not. It’s about enjoying every minute of it doing what I love: Listening to people’s stories, writing, being creative, working with my students, doing yoga, spending time with my family, taking long road trips and making new friends.
Time is precious, it can be elusive.
I didn’t know this when I was in my 20s or 30s. Plenty of time, I thought, to do all the stuff I wanted to do. So many places to explore, so many things to experience and to be mesmerized by.
The tricky thing is that time is only available in plenty supply if you use it, if you break it apart, challenge it, push it, stretch it, do something with it. Otherwise, if you take it for granted, it has the tendency to slip away. Slowly it seems, yet deceivingly fast.
Another year gone that you didn’t use to go on that trip, to look for that significant other, or start a new career.
If there is something you want to do, badly, do it now. Don’t wait. Life isn’t going to get easier or more perfect in a few months. The right moment won’t come. You won’t feel any better later. My tip: Don’t listen to your feelings. They are misleading. Listen to your heart instead.
Chris Guillebeau, author of 279 Days to Overnight Success, has made it his goal to visit every country in the world before his 35th birthday (I think he has 12 more countries to go). When he talks to people about his travels they often tell him that they wish they could do the same. His response: “Why don’t you?” Chris isn’t any more special than you and I, he doesn’t have more time or more money. He just does it.
How can you do the same?
For starters, find one thing that you’d love to do. This can be an idea you have been putting off, something you wanted to do for a long time. Like starting a blog or writing a novel, meeting new people, traveling to a distant place, etc. If you have a hard time finding out what this is, use my puzzle exercise for guidance.
Once you identified what you want to do, schedule time for it. This is important. Block out an hour or two on your calendar every week that’s solely dedicated to your new project.
Use this time to brainstorm, research and explore. Take it easy and be patient with yourself. Enjoy, play and make it fun. If you want to start writing a blog, research the best ways to do this, find nice templates, come up with ideas for your writing, read other people’s blogs on the same topic, etc.
Keep reserving time every week for your project. Make this a priority. Notice the distractions, the time limitations – and keep coming back to it regardless. This is key in keeping it alive. After a while, you’ll be looking forward to the time that you have set aside. And, you’ll be learning your craft.
If you run into excuses, drop me a note.
You have dreams. Everyone does. Start living them.
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And, if you’d like to work with me to discover your special rock star qualities, consider participating in a one-on-one session – for women who want to find their gift, fall in love with themselves and change the world.
Photo Source: Photosteve101 via Flickr under a Creative Commons License