Why are you here?
When I ask this question, I am not asking why you are in the place where you are, nor why you are in the city where you are, nor even why you are in the country where you are .
I ask the question, because I wonder why you exist at all?
In the fall of 2003, I published a book I wrote called The Why Are You Here Café. It is a fictional story of a man who walks around a cafe all night and is surprised to find three questions on a menu. Why are you here? Do you fear death? Are you satisfied?
I am not so arrogant now to think that I have the answer to the way that anyone, except me, should live their life. I do know, however, that I have learned some things that help me think about life differently. There are things I wish I had learned earlier in life, things that I often think about and that continually give me a boost and help me on my journey to achieve the lives of my dreams.
My hope is that by sharing these things with you, they will somehow help you on your journey to live the life of your dreams.
1. Know your purpose for existence (PFE), or at least seek
Your goal of existing is exactly what it says. This is the reason why you exist, the reason why you are alive. This is the answer to the question I asked you at the start of this article. Why are you here?
Your PFE is like your own personal compass for life. Should you go to New York and become a commodity trader? Return to your PFE. Why are you here? If you travel the world like a body of peace. volunteer? Return to your PFE. Why are you here? Should you stay in a relationship that you questioned? Return to your PFE. Why are you here?
Besides relieving much of the stress of decision-making, it also relieves a lot of anxiety from everyday life. You don't have to justify yourself or why you do what you do. Do you know the answer. You meet someone and they say, "Hi, what are you doing?" You answer: "Oh, I teach yoga" or "I am an insurance salesperson" or "I am a chiropractor". "Interesting," they say, "what prompted you to enter this field." Well, it helps to fulfill my purpose of existing, "answer yourself. Wow! It's a powerful statement. You do what you do because it helps you answer the exact reason for your existence. It doesn't get much simpler or more powerful than that.
2. Fear is a terrible thing; don't let him control your life.
Someone once told me a great quote to try something new. He said he had been fighting fear for a long time until the day his friend said, "Realistically listen to the worst that could happen." I think this is a great comment to remember. We are often paralyzed in non-action by the fear that something drastic may happen. But the reality is that almost any decision or action we make can be changed if we don't like the outcome.
We can almost always go back to what we were doing before trying something new. Also, what are the chances of the "worst thing" happening? It probably isn't likely at all, yet this distant chance prevents us from doing the things we want to do.
My major moment "Aha" which allowed me to overcome my fears, came a day when I suddenly realized that there was very little that had not already been made by at least one, and possibly thousands of people. Definitely everything I tried, other people had already tried and succeeded. Well, I thought. If they could do it, so would I.
It is likely that whatever you are trying to accomplish in life, someone, at some point in history, at some place in the world, has done it and proven that it does. could be done. If they could do it, so could you.
3. Either we can live as a stain of meaningless existence or we can live a life of meaning
Have you ever been somewhere on a very clear night where you can admire the stars? You were in a nice, dark place with no local light distracting your eyes. How many stars do you think you can see with the naked eye when you look up through the sky? It looked like millions that I bet. The sky just seemed to be filled with stars. Well, the reality is that the huge amount of stars you see on a totally clear night when there is no outside light is actually about 3000.
To put this number in perspective, keep in mind that in our galaxy alone, there are 100 billion stars. Now our star, which is the sun, has 9 planets and 54 moons circling around it. Using our star as a proxy means that there are 6.3 TRILLION stars, planets and moons floating in our galaxy. So what you see on a perfectly clear night, this immense amount of stars and space, represents about 0.00000005% of everything in our galaxy. Amazing isn't it. Now consider this. It's just our galaxy. Do you know how many galaxies there are? Scientists estimate that there are more than 500 million.
So, with all of that as a perspective, how important are our individual lives to the whole universe? It is quite easy to see how someone might think that they are just a grain of meaningless existence. Admittedly, we are just points in the bigger picture. But suppose we are not meaningless. Suppose there is a definite purpose that each of us is here, a reason why we exist right now that goes beyond mere sperm and egg and nine months later a little you or me.
I believe there is a reason. I believe we each have a specific purpose for existing, or PFE as I like to refer to it. My suggestion is to find this goal. Complete this goal.
I have had people saying to me, "What if you're wrong?" "What if I think I have a PFE, and I live my life the way I do, but I'm really just a grain of existence meaningless?" My answer to this is always the same. If we find what we think is our very purpose of being alive, our purpose of existing and we live a life to achieve it, then by default we will have given meaning to our life . What makes sense can no longer be meaningless.
4. Realize that something is satisfactory because we decide that it is satisfactory, and not because someone else tells us so.
There are a lot of people trying to make you buy things, and they will tell you almost anything to make you do it.
Do you know how much money was spent on advertising in the United States last year? The answer is a staggering $ 124 billion. The purpose of these expenses is to get you and me to buy things, and advertisers are becoming more and more knowledgeable about how to do it.
For example, they learned that memory and emotion are important factors in determining whether or not a customer has loyalty to a product. They therefore examine the brain responses of test subjects to whom advertisements are shown, to see if a particular advertisement invokes a reaction from the test subject's emotional center or memory center of the brain. In this way, they can know if the advertisement will boost long-term brand loyalty for a particular product. Can't you see that? Someone walking down the street, walks past a billboard and suddenly has this huge, compelling but inexplicable urge to buy lottery tickets.
Are we still there? No, I do not think so. Will we get to this point? I do not know. The point is, marketers and marketing technology are making and will continue to make it increasingly difficult to sift through all the noise so that we can form our own views on things.
The challenge is to realize that something is satisfactory not because someone tells us, but because we determine it individually. Does love really come in the form of diamond earrings, which say "You love her and you would marry her again"? Does self-esteem and empowerment really lie in owning a particular automobile? Personally, I don't think so in both cases, but don't listen to me any more than you would listen to the ad. You decide.
5. Be grateful and take advantage of the benefits of living in this country
We have incredible opportunities at our fingertips simply because we live in this country. Now, I don't know about you, but all I did to get these opportunities was to get out of the womb in what turned out to be a very fortuitous place.
Do you know how much an average university graduate in Myanmar (formerly Burma) earns? They make 10,000 Kat per month. This represents approximately US $ 12.00. What about the average university graduate in China? How much do you think they earn per month? This number is 1,500 Yuen, or just under US $ 200.
Wages of this magnitude are now sufficient for these people to function in the respective economies of their country. In all likelihood, these people will never be able to travel and see the world. They just can't afford it. But we can. We have the financial advantage of a strong currency compared to the majority of the world.
In this country, we can get an education, and we can go for decent, paid work. We think unemployment becomes really bad when it reaches 6%. In South Africa, it exceeds 40%.
As a country, we have our fair share of problems. When you cross borders and travel to other places, you see things that make the United States look like paradise. We have freedom. We can say what we want, buy what we want, become what we want, travel where we want, and for the most part the only thing we've done to get it all is to get out of it. 39; uterus in the correct geographic area. We should not take this for granted.
6. Look at the small picture, but with a great perspective
People often say, look at the big picture. I say look at the little picture, but with a great perspective.
Do you know what life is? Life is actually one day multiplied by about 27,500. Sometimes it's less, I hope for more, but usually around 27,500. The easiest way to make sure we live a good life is to make sure that every day we do something that we enjoy. I'm sure it sounds simple to you. It took me decades to understand this.
Doing something you enjoy every day is an example of looking at the little picture. But keep in mind the big prospect, what is your PFE? What do you want from life? Why are you here?
Here is an example of a small image and a large perspective. Do you do any form of work for at least 20 minutes each weekday? Are you going to work, work from home, something? What do you say about that. Do you wake up every day of the week and stretch for at least 20 minutes?
Ok, different question. What is most important to you, health or money? Would you like to permanently exchange the possibility of climbing a staircase in exchange for money? Would you like to permanently exchange the possibility of taking a bike ride along the beach, the garden, raising a grandchild, playing sports or fishing in exchange for money?
Then pay attention to how you spend your time each day, because making the decision to go to work 20 minutes earlier or spend 20 more minutes at work, instead of taking 20 minutes a day to stretch, is a slow version of trading. these abilities.
As a society, we have a propensity to spend all kinds of time on other things, and when we are good and tired and barely have the energy to say hello, we will interact with those that matter most to us or spend time ourselves. It's the fast track to feeling like a complete stranger to the people who matter most to you and yourself.
7. Look for close life experiences
At 28, I started living life-like experiences. Have you heard the term near death experience? This is when people survive a heart attack or are almost hit by a car and they experience this tremendous sense of lucidity over the lifespan and the way they should think about how they really want to live it before they don't have it. a life to live.
Well, at 28, I started having these revelations with no possibility of traveling to the emergency room. I started to live experiences close to life.
Life-like experiences are the times when you do exactly what you want. You enjoy life, you live the exact experience you want from life, and because of that, you feel really satisfied with the experience of life. Near Life Experiences (NLE) can come from something as simple as hugging your partner or as complex as reaching a particularly difficult goal that you set for yourself. They come when you fill out your PFE.
When you have an experience close to life, you are absolutely and completely happy. It’s the most amazing feeling in the world.
Find these moments for yourself and find out how to integrate more of them every day into your life. Experience so many of them that you get to the point where you insist on having a full life, a life where you fill up your IEP.
Have them as soon as possible, because the great thing about experiences, especially near-life experiences, is that the earlier in your life you have them, the more you have to reap the benefits. What you learn at 20, 35 or 50 can be applied for much longer and in many more situations than what you learn at 85. Even better, the experiences build on each other. Once ideas start coming, they create this fantastic knowledge base on which everything else is built.
8. Choose your own metric of success in life
When you have spent time in other countries and then come back to the United States, you realize how our culture combines success and money. How much do you earn? What kind of car do you drive? How big is your house? These are all measures based on money.
If we choose this as metric, that's fine, as long as we make sure we choose it. And when we decide what our metric will be, we must keep in mind that money is not the only one. The time we spend each day doing what we want, our degree of accomplishment in life, our happiness, our love and many others, are also indicators of success in life.
Evaluate them carefully because the parameters we choose become the driving force of our actions.
9. Act as if your life depends on your decisions, because
Have you ever been in a discussion where you were debating what to do, and someone said, "Well, what would you do if your life depended on it?" It really puts things in a different perspective, doesn't it? Now all of a sudden it's more important. MY LIFE DEPENDS ON IT!
Well, in reality, our lives depend on the decisions we make every day. Whether or not we realize what we want from life or not, it all depends on our daily decisions.
Have you ever heard the term "The Big Five"? The Big Five is something you hear all the time when you are on an African safari. It means rhino, elephant, buffalo, leopard and lion. People always ask, "Did you see the big five? How many of the big five did you see? Where were the big five?" …
I think we should adopt this term for our lives. The Big Five for Life will be the five things we absolutely want to do, see or experience in our life. The things that on our death beds we will look back and leave, yes, I have made my Big Five for life.
Wouldn't that be a good start to the conversation? "Hello, my name is John, and you are? …" "Nice to meet you. So, what's on your Big Five for Life list and how can I help you fill them out? "
Although they may be, the items on the Big Five for Life list do not have to be one-time events. For example, number one on my list is to have a lifelong romantic relationship with my wife. It is something with an undefined end date. As long as I'm here, it's on the list.
The reason I think it would be so fantastic is because we often forget to act as if our lives depend on our decisions. We are entering a model and soon we have all these reasons why we cannot do the things we want.
Make your daily decisions as if your life depended on it, as it is.
10. Choose to work on things you are passionate about and you will always be passionate about what you are working on
Here is a statistic that may shock you. It shocked me. In an average week, including the two days of the weekend, a person will spend more than 52% of their waking life either at work, at work, or at work-related activities at home.
More than half of our waking life is spent at work. Now, this is something to keep in mind when we are making decisions about the type of work we want to do. "I choose to dedicate half of my life to continuing this work."
If you're going to dedicate 52% of your waking life to work-related activities each week, you might as well choose to work on something you are passionate about. I know it can be difficult. We live in this interesting world where people enjoy experiencing something about much more important skills like aptitude, general intelligence, driving and many others.
However, think of it this way. If there is something else you have always wanted to do, but you lack experience, every day you do not go, it is a day of experience in less. You might as well start right away.