You’ve got to dance like there’s nobody watching,
Love like you’ll never be hurt,
Sing like there’s nobody listening,
And live like it’s heaven on earth.
?William W. Purkey
This moment will be part of your story someday. It’s not right or wrong. It’s not perfect. It just is – a blank canvas – a completely unrestricted space that you can use as you please. To laugh. To get rambunctious. To muse. To create. To express your freedom to be as you are.
You have to live each moment consciously in your own way, design your own truth, and then share it with others. It’s a process of growth you gradually realize as an individual. You can’t acquire it from others; you can only share it once you’ve created it. You have to break out of your shell and do things. Do what moves you. Be who you are. Explore life’s mysteries until you figure out what matters most to you.
If you sit around for too long, blaming others for the things they did or didn’t do, or knew or didn’t know, you’ll remain sitting in one spot until you pass. Placing blame is easy, because it means you don’t have to do anything; you just have to sit around for your entire life. But that’s not living; that’s dying. To accept where you are without blame by seizing the present for what it is – for the opportunities it’s giving you every instant – that’s what injects life into your story and ultimately moves you forward.
With all of this in mind, here are six things you should love about your life:
1. Time spent on personal growth and goals.
The wisest and happiest are those who are respectful of their time, annoyed at the needless loss of it, and use it dutifully to grow as they age. Sadly, too many of us age much faster than we grow. We spend so much of our lives going through the external motions of what society tells us ‘maturity’ is – getting married, buying houses, working our way up the corporate ladder, etc. – that we fail to concentrate on our own inner growth and goals. We never allocate enough time just for us.
Part of the problem is that we’re always waiting for some condition to resolve itself at some point in the future. We believe that the right time to take the next step is somehow going to magically happen tomorrow, next week, next month, next year, etc. But one day we wake up and realize we’re no closer than we were long ago. We find ourselves asking, “How did it get so late, and why haven’t I moved?” In other words, we’ve aged, but we never grew to our potential. We never fulfilled ourselves.
Let this be your wake-up call. This is life. Right now. Indulge in it. Make it count. Because it’s happening. Read 1,000 Little Things.
2. Living your truth every day.
The world can easily be a tragedy if all you do is feel without ever acting. To feel something and believe in it, and not to live it, is lying to yourself. If you do this for too long you will never do more than exist meekly from one robotic motion to the next. You will live a lie every day as the truth haunts your thoughts every night. You simply can’t get away from your truth by moving dishonestly from one place to the next.
If any of this hits too close to home, take a stand right now. Stop sipping the denial cocktail and take a shot of the delightful truth. Wherever your heart is, there you will find the reality that brings YOU to life. The time to act on your truth is now.
3. The joy and freedom of an open mind.
Your perspective on things is important; it enables you to make sense of the life you lead. Always keep in mind, though, that different people have different perspectives, and yours isn’t the only one that makes sense. There are few black and white facts in this world. Most facts are simply interpretations. You begin to learn wisely when you’re willing to see life from other people’s perspectives too.
Even as you grow wiser and wiser with age you must remind yourself that an understanding is never absolutely final. What’s currently right could easily be wrong later. Thus, the most destructive illusion is a settled point of view. Since life is continuous growth and movement, choosing a fixed point of view is essentially a declaration of death.
Success in life does not depend on always being or proving that you’re right. To make real progress you must let go of the assumption that you already have all the answers. You can listen to others, learn from them, and successfully work with them even though you may not agree with every opinion they have. When people respectfully agree to disagree, everyone benefits from the diversity of perspective. Read Buddha’s Brain.
4. Relationships that improve you.
It’s not about finding someone to lose yourself in, it’s about meeting someone to find yourself in. When you connect with someone special – a friend or lover – this person helps you find the best in yourself. In this way, neither of you actually meet the best in the each other; you both grow into your best selves by spending time together and nurturing each other’s growth.
When you honestly ask yourself who these special people are in your life, you will often find that it’s those who, instead of giving you things or taking things from you (advice, answers, material possessions, etc.), have chosen rather to share in your joy and pain, and experience life along with you through good times and bad.
5. The story you tell yourself every day.
Forget what everyone else thinks of you; chances are, they aren’t thinking about you anyway. If you feel like they always are, understand that this perception of them watching you and critiquing your every move is a complete figment of your imagination. It’s your own inner fears and insecurities that are creating this illusion. It’s you judging yourself that’s the problem.
You judge yourself by telling yourself a story inside of your head. Every moment of every day you’re telling yourself this story. You are building your future around this story, so tell it right. Create a positive narrative about your dreams and goals that include only the circumstances that matter. What you think others are thinking about you is not part of this narrative, and neither are your negative self-judgments. Read Uncertainty.
6. The positive spin of life’s surprises.
You are never at the total mercy of life’s surprises. No matter what life throws at you, you can decide what these events mean to you in the short term, the long term, and how you will integrate them into your life. Everything that happens is subject to your interpretation of it. Thus, far more important than what happens, is what you choose to do with what happens, and your options are abundant.
The life you live is ultimately the life you choose. Choose to focus on the negative, and negativity will indeed surround you. Turn your focus to the positive possibilities, and these possibilities gradually become realities in your life.
Photo by: Katie Harris
Vincent Nguyen says
Thank you for the reminders, Marc. It really is easy to sit around and blame everything and everyone around us when things aren’t the way we want them. What we really should be doing is focusing the right things and loving life regardless of what others are doing.
“Part of the problem is that we’re always waiting for some condition to resolve itself at some point in the future.”
I used to think like that but then I realized that’s pointless. Why not BE the the spark that ignites positive change? I can’t just sit around expecting for things to get better because I wouldn’t ever go anywhere. I probably wouldn’t remember to love life if I waited for life to treat me well.
Your blog posts always make me smile and appreciate life in a new way, especially when I am feeling down. After reading one of your posts, I feel like I was reborn with enthusiasm and a renewed perspective on what truly matters.
Thank you so much for being an constant inspiration in my life.
This is great! Thank you for sharing. I feel like I try daily to live my life following these six suggestions. On my blog I recently wrote about choosing positivity as it relates to these points. Check it out if you get a chance: raisingstacey.blogspot.com/2013/02/i-choose-positivity.html
Wow, you’re making me think again. This post opens a couple points I really need to consider as I progress through the rest of this year.
I appreciate the time you put into your blog each week. Your articles always have a way of motivating and refocusing me.
Thank you for making me a better person. I already can’t wait for the next blog post of yours to come.
Thanks for the continual inspiration and life lessons. You’re like a wise father/ mother/ guru/ god etc. for a better life!
Big Love 🙂
I woke up and read this. I truly know this was was message for me. I’m turning 27 and I was not living life in a positive, loving way. I’m always thinking negative so much I made a life around it, and people I love live with it but are still here which actually amazes me… they are waiting and showing me love because I’m full of so much potential.
Today, Marc, I want to love like there was never a question or thought in my mind that it is negative. I can’t predict the future but I can definitely take a chance and experience what I say I love and practice growing with restriction into who I want to be. It’s time that I stop with the regrets and stop dying in my OWN mind. Thank you again and again for choosing to write positive messages to people everywhere who are waiting and hoping for a sign and a push forward.
Li-ling (BeHappyHQ) says
I have found that it is often most important to do what is right for you at a given point in time.
While I agree that expecting change to happen is not always the best thing, sometimes, taking the ‘slow’ approach to things, we find that either the problems weren’t as big as they seemed in the beginning or that things start to resolve themselves. Very much depends on the situation.
Great advice all round though – Thanks!
This is all so true and fits to my situation like a glove. I know that I have to get up and do something to achieve what I am so wishing for… thank you for reminding me! Such an inspiration! xx
I need to read Number 5 every morning. Number 6 is great as well. Surprises are gifts if used in an empowering way. Thanks.
This post is a positive light along the path I am walking these days. The reading suggestions are also very helpful and I appreciate them.
Wow, how did you know this was me. Thanks for the kick up the backside, I really needed that 🙂
The quote you shared is perfect since we’re beginning a new week.
Living your truth every day takes practice, especially when you’re surrounded by people who can’t handle your truth. Just ask anyone who’s “come out” to their parents or have told their parents they’re going to study art instead of accounting, finance, law, medicine, computers, etc. Or those who are skip college to travel the world.
Sometimes, speaking your truth causes friction within your family and maybe with your friends. But you MUST live and speak your truth no matter what.
Hopefully, those around you will one day know the “joy and freedom of an open mind.” If not, don’t sweat it. Surround yourself with people who love and accept you for you. And remember the words of Dr. Seuss, “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”
Ishie Ansah says
It’s like I have to read this every morning when i wake up. This message is so ‘wow’ to my life. Thank you very much.
CJ Langley says
Great article! I needed to be reminded of #1. It is easy to get discouraged and start feeling like spending time on *my* personal goals is self-indulgent. Thanks for a great post!
I’m new to your blog and already overwhelmed by the many possibilities you have made me aware of life’s twist & turn. Thank you for the inspiration.
This is wonderful. You are an inspiration.
Mary Sauerbrey says
I’ve experienced regret after subscribing to blogs in the past as the barrage of messages that ensue result in more chaos than clarity. Your blog is different. Each message stood above the masses and I emerge at the very end full of gratitude for your words of wisdom and truth. If I could choose only one blog to follow ( and I may), it would be yours… you have a true follower. Thank you, thank you!
Kyle Richey says
#1 is my personal favorite.
No matter what else is going on in our lives, moving closer to our goals and appreciating how far we’ve come boosts our confidence and joy…and that trickles down into the other aspects of our life.
Excellent post as always!
@Vincent: Very true. It’s all about taking responsibility for the life you’re living in this moment, and making the best of it.
@Ravi: Thank you!
@Stacey: I choose positivity too. Great read, thank you for sharing. 😉
@erin: There is no day like today. Let your positivity shine and your true potential be free.
@Allan: Welcome! 🙂
@Mary: I’m so happy you’re connecting with out content. Thank you for letting us know. It really means a lot to us.
@Kyle Richey: You got it. Celebrating our small triumphs inspires us to keep stepping toward our bigger dreams.
@All: What a great way to kick-off our morning… through the positivity and love you all are sending us. Thank you for inspiring us with your comments.
Another excellent post! Reading some of your blog posts I would think you two are much older. I feature some of your blog posts in my Travel related blog under the section “Oddz & Endz”. Thank you and keep it up please!
Again, another thought provoking post. Thank you.
NLP Training World says
Number 6 looks the best because when people are faced with surprises they really crumble and start blaming God and life.
As you rightly said, the ideal thing would be to move forward and take actions in a positive way. We are truly amazed by the consistent effort that you are giving to the personality development of people. NLP Training also applies most of these principles and we can see the similarity.
“Wherever your heart is, there you will find the reality that brings YOU to life.”
…I know now! Well put.
I really love the opening sentence.
Nick Goodall says
You guys must live a seriously epic life…
Wow, truth. That hurt :/ Not too badly, but I’m reassuring myself that things will happen, even if I let those values slip a while. That really sucks, but nevertheless I’ve got to thank you, have an epic day 🙂
@George: Thanks so much for the kind remarks and for spreading the word about our work. We greatly appreciate it. PS: We have old souls. 😉
@Keirra: Me too.
@Nick Goodall: Thanks. Epic? You bet. We strongly believe that life is what you make it, and we do our best to live by this belief every day.
Hey Marc, I’m a huge advocate of spending as much time as possible doing things that are meaningful to you.
I love this: “Let this be your wake-up call. This is life. Right now. Indulge in it. Make it count. Because it’s happening. ”
I was caught for several years into doing whatever the outer world expected from me. Looking back it’s hard to believe I could live like that. But unless you get a wake-up call, it’s hard to break free.
I hope your post will be this kind of wake-up call for a lot of people…
Wow… Thank you for the wake-up call. I love all of this, so thought provoking. I’m new to your site and emails and look forward to receiving them every day.
Very inspiring post! Sometimes when we are bombarded with so much pain and trouble, we forget how beautiful life is. We forget that the best things in life are really those that are free.
Thank you so much for this great post
This is great inspiration. Thank you very much for your daily reminders of life. We do forget most of these things each day. You have changed my life from one glory to another.
Thanks for an inspiring post. Points that we forget and need to be reminded of.
Read your post shared by the sweet Dabney Porte. 🙂 Beautiful words and very inspiring. 🙂