Lately I've been getting back into reading again. For weeks my stack of books waiting to be read by my nightstand were just collecting dust. Then one day in a moment where I could have either opened Netflix or the book cover, I chose the book. I've got to remember to do that more!
Because what I discovered was not only that I really love reading, but so many great lessons and words of wisdom inside those pages. You know when you get to a passage in whatever you're reading that speaks to you so profoundly that you have to stop and re-read that part a few times to let it sink in? That happened over and over again in this book.
Many things stood out, but in particular, this idea of "success" and what we are all striving for. Many (myself included at times) are looking for a tangible result to know they've made it - for instance:
"I'll be happy when I have X saved in my bank account"
"I'll be happy when I finally get to go on that vacation"
"I'll be happy when I find the right partner - or just a partner at all!"
The idea that was put forward in the book instead was that what we should all be looking for isn't a physical marker, but rather a feeling. What matters most is, after all, how you feel at the end of the day. How many of us reach that place we thought was the goal, only to get there and in bed that night, feel just as empty as before we reached it?
It's because we were aiming at the wrong target. A target outside of ourselves. And one that wasn't aligned with how we wanted to feel - with a target that far disconnected, how can you possibly hit it?
After I read that I started going through all of my own goals and aspirations and put them up against the "how do I want to feel" test. Here's some of what I came up with:
At the end of my time here, how do I want to feel?
- I want to feel proud - that I contributed and brought some light where there may not have been any
- I want to feel curious - to keep learning and searching and wondering
- I want to feel love - for myself, for this life, for my body, for those around me
- I want to feel grateful - for who I became, how I lived this life and who I lived it with
If those are some of your barometers, what goals do you want to shift now? How do you want to feel?