The breeze blew firmly off the lake. We sat. The breeze brushing briskly in our faces. The hot sun bathing us from behind. Our church met at the Lake this weekend. We celebrated the lake’s 100th anniversary. Andrew, our Pastor, started speaking. He suggested that we all want to have a life that was meaningful and significant. He was right … at least to me. I want to have a life filled with meaning and significance.
Sometimes I have it. I just finished another Boot Camp. I saw lives changed. Relationships saved. Meaning and significance was found.
Sometimes I don’t. It can be like that book I haven’t started yet. It can be that business idea I told someone about but haven’t started working on. I’ll do those things after I have something else first.
The two most common reasons for not doing something are time and money. I’ll write that book when I have more time. I’ll start that business when I get more money to start it. The tail wags the tiger. The excuse chooses the outcome. The book won’t be written until I carve out the time. The business won’t get the money until I start working to start the business.
So you say, “I want my life to have meaning and significance”. What’s stopping you? What’s your ‘BUT’ – I want to, BUT? Is it time, money, exposure/opportunity, the right people? What would you need to have to a more meaningful and significant life? What’s your excuse?
I’ve chosen from all of them. I still do. I’m learning to let the excuses go. They don’t serve me. They don’t help me serve anyone else, either. They make me smaller and weaker. They are bullsh*t.
What if instead of waiting to have more time, money, or exposure to have a more meaningful and significant life, you live a life that is meaningful and significant with the time, money and exposure you already have? It’s easy to start. The barrier for entry is low.
Hold the door open for someone. Take time to talk to a friend or employee (or your spouse). Deliver a project early. Tuck your kid in and listen to them rattle on about their day. Volunteer to lead that project you care about. Encourage someone to take a risk and support them after they screw something up. Solve a problem and offer the solution to someone who needs it instead of asking for permission to do it.
You will never have a life that feels meaningful and significant life without being meaningful and significant. You have to ‘be’ before you can ‘have’. You can’t cross the finish line for the race you haven’t crossed a starting line for.
We have a better chance of having the impressive life that has meaning and significance once we start being meaningful and significant with what you have. Funny thing is … once you start being meaningful and significant you’ll care a lot less about having meaning and significance.
If you want to have it, you have to be it. It doesn’t work the other way around.
What do you need start being today to have a meaningful and significant life tomorrow?
- Meaningful Life=Meaningful Creation (windykai.wordpress.com)
- A New Billionaire’s 10 Rules for Success (blogs.wsj.com)
- Money and the Meaning of Life (blogs.hbr.org)