How many times have I said, “I want to do that in my second life.” I flippantly say it as if my life were already set and the possibility of that thing (whatever ‘that thing’ happens to be at the time) were impossible to achieve.
As many of you know, I am a fan of Donald Miller. He and Anne Lamott collided with my life about 5 years ago and I have internally and publicly thanked them many times for changing my course of thinking.
I liked the approach that Miller had in his recent blog post about 2012 entitled, Live This Year as Though You Were Living it for the Second Time. What an intriguing concept. Looking back to last year – or to your previous years – what would you tweak? What direction would you take? What lessons have you learned that would make it possible for you to make different decisions than you did the first time around? What relationships would you develop further – or perhaps avoid altogether? Why not live 2012 as if it is a repeat. Like some of those tv shows that allow a person to see what tomorrow holds and make decisions based on those events – why not live that way TODAY?
What I did with this was to create a few categories on a sheet of paper and write down how I’d like to live within those categories a bit differently. For me, those categories are career, relationships and faith. – Miller
In particular, I gravitated to Miller’s own hopes for 2012. It is very similar to the trajectory of my own thoughts in preparedness for a new year. Relationships are either draining or fulfilling or challenging or demeaning. I want to be careful about choosing to be around people who do not necessarily think like me, but people who are willing to guide me and contribute to my life in order to make me a healthier person. People who are willing to continue to show up and who will allow me to do the same in their lives as well.
I want to live more wisely, stick to my values and ethics, live a much smaller, slower life. I also want to surround myself with people who have integrity, who can help me become more healthy, pillars who are grounded in reality so I know where I am and what life is really about. – Miller
It’s a mind trick, grant it. But it might be the right mental exercise for you to shift the direction of your thinking. Instead of “I wish I could…” you can look at your life experiences and say, “This time I will choose to…”
I like people who are willing to continue to grow and evolve.
I am particularly glad we can do this together.