Your Celebration of Independence
By Philip Humbert
Here in USA we've just celebrated our Independence Day. Obviously it's a day of great national pride for Americans, but I think it should also be a day of introspection and celebration for each of us as individuals.
It's a day for taking stock, for reviewing our progress and affirming the life we want to live.
It's a day for affirming our values, our goals, and the steps we are taking to create the life we desire.
Over 200 years ago, American revolutionaries declared that all people are and must be free to pursue their personal goals, based on their private, personal definition of happiness. Most of us vigorously agree with that, and yet too few of us ever reflect on the kind of life we truly want or list the specific action-steps we will take to create it.
So here is the challenge: This week, take time to define the life you truly want, and the steps you will take to make it a reality.
Here are four simple but profound steps that may help:
- Review what you already LOVE about your life!:
There is nothing like the power of gratitude. We don't pause often enough to note how well we are doing, how far we've come, how much we have. Before talking about what you want to change, pause to notice what's already working well in your life. Who do you need to thank? Who do you need to hug? What talents, skills, freedoms and resources do you celebrate in your life? We are the richest, most educated, most blessed people in history. Let's begin the revolution by giving thanks for that!
- What do you want LESS of in your life?:
Before we can add more, we probably have to dump some of the "stuff" that clutters our busy lives. Be honest! Most of us are already doing about as much as we can. We have stuff cluttering our closets, our garages, our attics, and we have "stuff" cluttering our calendars, too. Before we can make room for "more" we may have to do some house-cleaning.
- What do you want MORE of in your life?:
This is often where we begin and most of us have a laundry list of things we want, from more money to more time, to a new car or another vacation. So let's dig a bit deeper. What do you REALLY want in your life?
What brings you joy? What will fulfill you, use your potential and make you happy? What, exactly, would you like to change or add or do differently? We live in a time when you can have just about anything you truly want (and are willing to work for), but until and unless you define it, it will be hard to get it. What do you truly WANT?
- What can you do THIS WEEK to move toward it?:
In 1776, a group of Americans wrote a Declaration and staked their fortunes, their reputations and their very lives on the outcome. Most of us will not do anything that risky or dramatic, but you will have to do SOMETHING. What will you do to declare and demonstrate your independence?
Our national Independence Day is typically celebrated with picnics and fireworks, and that is wonderful! But I think it is best celebrated as a call to action in our own lives. Freedom is a precious thing, but too often we take it for granted and fail to use it! Use your freedom to build the life you want! You have the liberty to make something magnificent of your life. Don't waste the precious freedom that so many died to give us.