A Life Examined
I always love this day - December 31 - because ever since I've been my own boss (since 2003), I've used this day as a chance to reflect on the past year and look ahead to the coming year. Today I've been up since about 6:30 (I slept in a bit today!) and I'm in the lower level of my home in front of the fireplace with books and a journal strewn on the coffee table and couches next to me. I've got Timothy Ferriss' The 4-Hour Workweek sitting here with a bookmark in page 37, which is the first section of Q&A which I plan to journal about today.
I'm going to head upstairs in a couple of minutes, take a shower, and head to my favorite coffee shop with my journal and this book and work through it as I set my intentions for 2008 - both professionally and personally. Then I'm going to come home and get ready to spend the last part of 2007 with some of my best friends at a house party and welcome in the next Best Year of My Life: 2008. Each year since 2003 has been that because I've made up my mind that that is what I'm living into.
Which leads me into the title for today's post. I went to a workshop a year or so ago, where I learned a little bit about a breathing meditation. I've never been great at being quiet - and I still have that on my intention list for 2008! - so this was a very interesting class for me. One thought kept coming into my head at that class, and it popped into my head again today. I haven't quite figured out the entire thought yet, but it seems to be a combination of two thoughts: one from either Plato or Socrates (the jury is still out, from what I can see by my internet research) which says "An unexamined life is not worth living" and is, in some places, attributed to Socrates when he chose to drink hemlock rather than stop asking questions.
The other part of the thought has something to do with a life half-lived. I've seen it quoted a few places as "A life lived in fear is a life half-lived" and that seems to suit me fine right now. So with those two thoughts swirling around in my head today, I will set my intention for the last day of 2007.
What questions are swirling around in your head that you would rather not answer? Where might you be living an unexamined life or a life lived in fear? What is holding you back from connecting with your authentic self? There's no better time than the present to start asking those questions. Get yourself a journal for your journey - and start small. Ask the questions of yourself. Or if you'd rather, get a good friend to kick the ideas around with. Pick up my book The 100% Factor - it's a great starting point for interesting conversation, and it has a mini-journal built in.
It's on my intention list for early in 2008 to reprint my book with a new cover and a tiny bit of new content, so that might be a good time to check it out.
Thank you to everyone who has supported You Already Know This Stuff, Bock's Office, The 100% Factor, and me personally in 2007 and in years prior. I'm eternally grateful for your interest and support!
I couldn't close out a year-end post on this blog without a huge shoutout to the people I met either personally or by phone or by email this year because of the wonderful world of blogging:
and by phone:
and by email:
I pledge to become a much more active blogger in 2008 and not let my other "stuff" get in the way of connecting more often with these and other friends I have yet to meet. Among my intentions right now is to meet Rosa Say (I'll be in Hawaii in November, Rosa, and would love to buy you a cup of coffee or some other Hawaiian delicacy!), to reconnect with Steve Farber again (what a great Valentine's Day I spent with Steve last year here in Fargo!) and to meet Nick Smith somehow.
I will be hosting the second annual Summit for Bigger Small Talk here in Fargo in June and I hope to see many of you there. I'd also love to come to SOBCon this year, so I'll throw that out now and see what happens.
Take some time this next year to really examine your life. There are some WONDERFUL resources available here in blogland to get you started. Check out any of my friends' links here in this post and you'll have an amazing conversation even over email - guaranteed.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!