By Chris Chittenden
"The power of imagination created the illusion that my vision went much farther than the naked eye could actually see.”
… Nelson Mandela (1918-2013) South African Statesman
This month, I will continue our journey to establish some foundational values based on the four questions I posed in the last e-zine:
- What is at the heart of how you want to experience life?
- What is most important to you about what you want to create in life?
- What is central to how you want to approach life given an uncertain future?
- What is the basis of how you want to relate to others?
In the last e-zine we looked at the question, "what is at the heart of how I want to experience life?" My response to that was "Gratitude". What did you come up with?
This month we will explore the question, "What is most important to you about what you want to create in life?"
The context for this question relates to our attitude about what we seek to create in the world. It could be about things such as a lot of money, a career of some sort, the quality of important relationships or our own way of being. However the question does not relate to what we create but the motivation behind what we create.
My instinct in responding to this question relates to concepts such as success or a sense of achievement. Having said that, I suspect that answer stems more from what I hold my answer should be based on social norms rather than what is actually a motivation for me.
I have never seen myself as a high achiever. Indeed when I look at people who are high achievers I often see people who are somewhat obsessive and have quite a narrow focus. It seems like many of them are driven to achieve for more basic reasons often associated with their sense of self. That was not for me. I am not a 'win at all costs' type of guy.
As I explored this question more, the answer that came to me was "balance". I wanted to be successful at what I sought to create in the world but I wanted it to be a broad sense of success. I wanted to achieve good things in my work, my play, my finances, my relationships and in my sense of myself. However, I did not want to sacrifice certain aspects of my life to focus almost exclusively on another. I have seen too many suffer when they have spent time doing stuff that was not really related to what they said was important to them. This was not for me, so my answer to the question, "What is most important to you about what you want to create in life?" is "Balance".
How about you? What is important to you in what you seek to achieve in life? Is it a feeling of success or achievement? Does it relate to a level of excellence? Do you want to make a difference with others?
As with the first question, there is no right or wrong answer, just your answer. Indeed it is the process that you go through to come to your answer that is most important for it is how you start to give meaning to your answer and therein lays the key.
Next month, I will focus on the question, "What is central to how you want to approach life given an uncertain future?"
© 2015 Chris Chittenden