Step out the Stream of Daily Life
Reflect on these questions to clarify what's important to you in 2024
New years are new beginnings.
The moment encourages us to take a momentary step back and reflect on where we are on our journey.
Are we heading in the right direction? Do we even know in which direction to head? The only person who can answer that for yourself is you.
It’s not easy though.
That’s why I wanted to share some ideas and questions that have helped me gain some clarity.
Seeking Wisdom is a free newsletter.
Get the next post delivered straight to your Inbox!
Life is what happens when you’re making other plans
I had dreams—or at least of ideas—of what I wanted to become when I grew up.
Day after day then went by: I went to school and graduated. Then higher education, odd jobs and internships. Then followed the knock-on effect of work experience after work experience.
A life unnoticed in this manner leads to a place that’s increasingly difficult to connect to that childhood sense of future.
Live in harmony with who you are
The time we get to spend on this planet is the most precious thing we have.
The problem is modern life presents us with so much noise. Decision-making becomes hard and distractions are plently.
That's why it's important to develop a sense of what is in harmony with your own direction.
Is it clear to you what you want to do?
Is it clear to you what you don’t want to do?
As Derek Sivers put it, if the reply to a choice isn't a 'hell yes!', then it should be a firm no.
Remind yourself of what’s important to you
So what if you’re not sure of your direction?
I don't think there is a magic checklist that completing will give you 100% clarity. Self-retrospection is more a frame of mind than a specific action.
That said, I want to leave you with some questions a friend of mine shared with me recently that encouraged me to dig in interesting ways.
(I’ve added some extra lines that came to me when thinking about each question).
If you could invite anyone in the world to dinner, who would you invite?
Whoever you pick will be some kind of mentor to you. What is it about them that you admire? What is it you want to learn from them?
What was fun to you as a child?
As children, we did things for their intrinsic satisfaction. It wasn’t about status, money or fame. What was it about that activity that was fun?
Would you like to be famous?
We live in a society that prises fame and reputation. Yet, at best, we will be forgotten within three generations. How can you untie that paradox for yourself?
What would be your ideal day?
Do you prefer to be at home? With people? To work with your hands? With your mind? To be outside? Inside? Life is too short to force yourself to get out of bed each morning.
When did you last laugh a genuine laugh?
It's too easy to get beaten down by the daily tasks of life. It's too easy to forget to notice the simple things. Smell the flowers; live a little.
Imagine yourself in 5 years. What quality would you like to have that you currently don’t?
Developing skills and facets of ourselves takes time. It takes focus, energy and dedication. So, rather than picking up what is fashionable at the moment, ask yourself what kind of person you want to become.
If you knew you were going to die in a year, what would you change about how you’re currently living?
Our lives are finite so—as difficult as it is—it's important to look at the question straight in the eyes. Am I leading a life that I will be content with once it ends?
I hope you find a little more clarity about what really matters to you.
I wish you all the best for 2024.