Cool quote from this TED talk about almost dying and then living.
Meaning is not found in the material realm; it’s not in dinner, jazz, cocktails or conversation. Meaning is what’s left when everything else is stripped away.
There are lots of way to interpret that quote, of course.
One way I look at it is this: life is about who you are. If everything in your life suddenly disappeared and you were dropped into an empty field in an unknown country, what person would be standing there?
I’m not talking about some crazy Naked and Afraid survival scenario. Suppose you have some money and some clothes. But not much else. Who is that person standing in the field? What does he know? What does he want? How does he move forward? How will he impact the world around him? That’s who you are.
I’m not actually sure if that’s what that quote meant ☝️, but there’s my take. 😆
This goes with Aristotle’s idea that the meaning of life is what you do — how you impact the real world. As humans, we are uniquely gifted with smart brains and “rational faculty”. We are happiest when we use these minds for some purpose in the world.
A poet should write, a teacher teach, and a doctor heal. Not only should each person do their thing, but they should do it well.
I don’t know about you, but I find that pretty inspirational. 😊
It’s so good that I am just going to summarize it and quote it a lot right here per my own goals, but you should read it for yourself.
You Don’t Need A Bunch of Money – But making money encourages personal growth and gives you freedom and peace of mind. And the personal growth keeps you away from bad jobs, bad bosses, and bad commutes.
You Don’t Need to “Find Your Passion” – Just be good at something. Passion comes from being good at something, not the other way around. Being good at decent job can get you autonomy, a sense of meaning, and a positive work environment.
If you want to love what you do, abandon the passion mindset (“what can the world offer me?”) and instead adopt the craftsman mindset (“what can I offer the world?”).
You Don’t Need Everyone to Like You – “The best way to get other people to like you is to learn how to like yourself.”
You Don’t Need (Or Even Want) to Be Famous – “What can you pursue if fame isn’t the answer? Pursue building a tribe instead.”
I think everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it’s not the answer.
You Don’t Need Your Life to be a Movie – “You want a feeling of accomplishment, growth, and the pride that comes from following through with your goals.”
The secret of leadership is simple: Do what you believe in. Paint a picture of the future. Go there. People will follow.
With really interesting problems, you usually don’t need to think harder. You need to relax and let you mind do its thing while you sleep or do errands. That is when genius strikes. ⚡️
Creativity is all about making interesting connections. Albert Einstein called it “combination play.”
In my experience, this unconscious combo play is important for figuring out what do to and not so much how to do it. Once the what is clear in your mind, it can be followed by all the conscious thinking and hard work to get it done. Unfortunately, that part does not happen in your sleep. 😉
As a side note, there is also a beautiful space when your mind is so immediate and present that is simply doesn’t have time to think. This is what I like about improv. And also baseball.
I’ve been saying for a few months that I really want to make the most of this awful pandemic. Stuck at home with time on your hands, it’s a great chance to focus and reinvent yourself. So I loved seeing this post touting the idea that we’re just getting ready for the next phase of our lives individually and collectively.
This post says that people will thrive in the coming years if they have the right attitude and beliefs, or dwindle if they let the changes in the world beat them down.
Many of us have spent the past year not just coping with the present moment, but getting better. When the conditions are back to normal, we’re already going to have momentum. The golden age is upon us.
And as more people believe this, the more real it will be for everyone.
The world has been through much worse than the current situation and come out better on the other end. Make the most of it.
I just feel something in the air. I feel an awakening. I have this strong conviction that a large portion of society is just done with the pessimistic outrage culture nonsense. We’re ready to take control of not just the discourse, but our own lives.
It takes 12 (kind of)simple things such as taking responsibility for your own happiness, living for the struggle, manage your emotions, showing patience and restraint, being indepdendent and vulnerable and expecting the same from others. You know, easy stuff like that. 😉