“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”
Henry David Thoreau
2020 is arriving in several hours and here I sit, after declaring I would write this HOURS ago.
It is still 2019, I still have latitude between declaration and execution, right?
My lack of remembering was valid: there was the clogged toilet incident I was solving. After that, I was assisting my long term friend who fixed my roof right before I left for my cross country trip and prevented havoc during wild weather while I was gone. Who knew four hours to help trimming dog’s nails and getting pictures developed was going to turn into accompanying him to the dentist office and securing meds? I knew if I didn’t push the pharmacy pick up it might not happen until tomorrow afternoon and being the responsible, deliberate person I… realized how unintentionally I almost forgot Thoreau.
My actions today reflected my forgetting.
I was not living deliberately. I was living reactively, as has become my habit.
Being reactive rather than responsive is one of those unconscious habits I aim to shift as this new year and season and decade of my life begins.
The cost of this habit brought about a rather unremarkable life ruled primarily by fear with spurts of passionate living. The person I was I was twelve years or so ago, lived a very passionate life with only occasional spurts of fear.
As 2019 came to a close, clarity spoke to my heart and my mind loud and clear.
I aim to live deliberately – with passion, purpose and intention, every day.
This doesn’t mean building a small cabin in the forest like Thoreau did, this means I don’t miss the individual trees. This means I submit to delicious daily practices to feed my overall intentions.
I started this by asking, “Back when I was at my happiest and most productive, what consistent practices was I engaging in to help me feel so good?”
I was writing daily haiku and taking photos of everyday activities and actions, every single day without missing a day. If I did miss a day, I offered myself grace.
I want more of that, again.
Eleven days ago I started writing a morning haiku (though any form of short poetry or micro-poetry will do.)
I snap an accompanying photo and post on one of my social media accounts where I once had a regular audience cheering on my short poetry.
How do I feel, eleven days in?
Accomplished, satisfied, and delighted to have something daily an audience is waiting to read.
- Choose a practice that won’t take too much time or effort so success will come easily to you.
- Scan your past successes and use those as a compass for what is likely to work now.
- Share your intention with others who are supportive of you rather than the naysayers in your life who stare down their noses at your ideas.
- Start your practice and if it helps you to continue, share publically and ask people to respond.
Here is what you don’t know yet.
Three months ago, I came face-to-face with death. I stood on the edge and decided I had life yet to live, there were connections left for me to make.
When I come to those crossroads again, I want to be able to recognize that from now on I am choosing deliberately to create a life that reflects my beliefs and my vision, my passion and purpose.
What choice will you make the next time you arrive at a significant crossroad in your life?
Let’s talk about this in the comments.
If you would benefit from going deeper, let’s have a conversation. Here is a link to request a transformational coaching conversation session, please visit here.. My gift to you.
Julie JordanScott, the Creative Life Midwife, is a writer, a poet performer, a Creativity Coach, A Social Media Whiz and a Mother of three. One of her greatest joys include loving people into their greatness they just aren’t quite able to realize yet.
Hi would love to follow your poetry. Happy new year.
I hope you will! I woke up grouchy today, but went on a very brief walk and explored a bit and wrote my haiku. And then an egret visited and I went to make a video and some scrub jays visited. Creativity does this for me… it magnetizes things. 🙂
Lily Leung says
Sounds so familiar, Julie! Seems like so many of us have arrived to this very moment. I choose life at the crossroad. Without it, what can I do? Now I have to decide and work out what life for me means. Nothing is easy. Thank you for your suggestions.
Do you journal? This helps clear my mind so much…. art journaling when the words won’t come. 🙂
I am approaching a crossroads, a major one (retirement). Your words “Back when I was at my happiest and most productive, what consistent practices was I engaging in to help me feel so good?” is part of what I am trying to do now, with many choices ahead of me.
What an excellent discovery. This morning I texted a friend who told me I ought not be wandering around one of my favorite places. I basically wrote back saying I refused to be afraid. So much precious time has been wasted due to fear. No more! Let me know if you would like to bounce around ideas!
Karen Sammer says
Sounds like a great idea…I’m going to give that a try. I want to live responsively instead of reactively. Thanks for the post.
Karen, I am so grateful you read and commented. I am glad my words helped.
Anna Maria Junus says
What a great idea your haiku thing is!
And I love that you set goals but allow yourself grace.
Grace makes such a difference…. I’ve gotten stuck without it. Thank you so much for reading!