2009, The Real After Party

A lot of us have gotten our party on to celebrate the new year.  Certainly 2008 has been a year to remember for many reasons good and bad.  I find the rough seas of the economy and life in general to be a challenge to me taking a more active role in living my best life possible.   One of the sorriest lives one can live, is one of mediocrity, passiveness, apathy, or defeat.  I think of my life and must admit there have been times I have subjected myself to all of these.  I think of the time I have wasted or the opportunities lost.  I think of the years I have settled or didn’t believe in my own abilities. 

There are so many areas of directions to subscribe to in life.   So many things that could be focused on.  I don’t believe in New Years Resolutions, but I do believe that the new year is an opportunity for reflection, and an opportunity for new goal setting for life’s course.  For me, the most important things at this point are,

1. Taking control of my thoughts – I can’t control what other people do or say.  I can’t determine whether people will treat me with goodness or evil.  Who knows where my next dollar is coming from.  My mind and spirit have to be “mission control” as I only have true authority over self attitude and focus.  I need to think with a sense of optimism and hope in my life, and in the lives of the people I touch.  I have to believe in my future even as I embrace the present. 

2. Understand the adventure that life is – I think the most exciting life is one lived with a sense of fierceness not knowing what the next day will bring.  Packing light if you will.  My need for personal and emotional safety has cheated me out of that most of my days.  I hope to step out and dare myself to embrace more of the unknown.

3. TCB Academically – There are a few projects that I have been working on that need completion.  That will give documentation for my deeds.  Revolution is started with a spoken word, but it’s carried on the printed page.  My pages should be read long after I am gone.

4. Not just about what I do, but who I am– It is important to accomplish my goals and leave my mark on this world.  To help make it a better place than when I entered it.  But I truly want to be remembered for the love I gave, the wisdom and knowledge I shared, the joy I spread, and the hope I inspired.  If in my works I do not make someone’s life better, I have failed.

5. Love freely and unconditionally, understanding that I am responsible for my own happiness.  – People are wonderful creations.  And we all have our flaws.  We need to give and receive love.  But we need to learn to love ourselves independently.  It has to be so strong that it sustains us when we can’t sense the love from another.  Giving and receiving love is reciprocal to say the least.  They feed one another and it’s a beautiful thing.  But if we in wanting to receive that love and acceptance give people too much power over our personal sense of value and worth, we are destined to live and die with a broken heart.

I have not attained all of these.  They are key areas that I see within myself that I vow to focus on. 

I hope each of you have your own set of goals… and God grant you the grace to see them through.

 

The Man Bible 6: Your Purpose Must Come Before Your Relationship

Admit to yourself that if you had to choose one or the other, the perfect intimate relationship or achieving your highest purpose in life, you would choose to succeed at your purpose.  Just this self-knowledge often relieves must pressure a man feels to prioritize his relationship when, in fact, it is not his highest priority. 

The first item that crossed my mind when I read this was the book of Genesis.  When God created Adam the first thing he gave him was not a woman, or kids, or friends – it was a job. (purpose)

Genesis 2:15: God took the Man and set him down in the Garden of Eden to work the ground and keep it in order.

He didn’t give him the woman until verse 22.  Before that he was managing the land and naming all the animals.  When Adam was well into his purpose God gave him someone to help him with it.  Otherwise He would have just created the man and woman and said, “Alight ya’ll, have at it. ”  This makes perfect sense and really resonates with me.  Inside of me is my reason for being.  And though our relationships are important, dare I say vital to a healthy existance, our purpose is our primary function – our reason for being.

When I am about my purpose I gain an inward peace that satisfies my deepest sense of belonging.  I feel connected to the universe and the energy I gain and then give out is pleasant; a source of healing.  In turn I can give totally within my relationships knowing that I took care of business.  I don’t feel the burden of knowing that I neglected the reason for my living.  At the same time, those that love me will respect this priority and push me towards making my full contribution to the universe.  With purpose come rewards, not the least of them is peace.  This peace will permeate the relationships and make them fully enjoyable.   

Now my favorite word when it comes to all things pertaining to life and wisdom is, “balance.”  If one has integrity he will not cheat those whom he loves out of valuable time and attention and make purpose an “excuse” not to participate or invest in the relationship.  What he will do is see to it that when he does participate he is fully present, giving total attention to the person he is spending time with – without distraction.  He does not think about the next task or what he will be doing tomorrow. 

Being fully present in all the things we do helps to give us that sense of balance where all prioritites have the time and attention necessary.