In the last 4 posts I wrote about 5 things to think about and this is the last in the mini-series. So for number 5 I thought it is about time to look back at the year and review things. Look back over the mountains and valleys I have traversed. This is in line with the previous 4 posts and continues the challenge of living the values that I have identified.
As I mentioned previously I am now much more aware that freedom, simplicity and creativity is of high value to me. This is due to a constant review process and also specifically looking back over the last year and asking myself three questions: What worked? What didn’t work? What needs to change?
What didn’t work for me in the last year was that my activities aren’t aligned with my values. This created massive amounts of tension internally and was visible as impatience and anger on the outside – that has got to go! …But how? Sometimes I feel like the victim because how can I keep on changing without passing out on the floor or getting a brain transplant? I sometimes feel like I constantly have to change, then pause and realise it is not about changing but revealing an artwork from the raw stone – hard work. It is about peeling away layers, carving away all the unnecessary and revealing what has been there all along. This can only happen if I stand back and look at what I have already done – I have to review my progress.
I have to be very clear, I don’t believe in new-year’s resolutions. I do however believe in recognising the journey that I am on, the messages that come my way and responding by working on myself as an artwork captured in stone.
So what did work in the last year? Identifying what some of my core practical values are. Even though the last year I could say didn’t work in general (see the previous post about dark places) it has paradoxically also worked. It seems that the only way to move forward is to go through a broken time that fixes me. It is perhaps that part of the sculpture that is truly exquisite and that takes more time – at the time it seems impossible to complete and constantly on the edge of failure but when you step back and review it is clear that the difficulty was the key to revealing what is precious.
So what needs to change? In the next year I need to live in alignment with the values (freedom, simplicity, and creativity) that I have identified. How? I know that I do not like specific targets or goals. Whenever I have tried to put specific goals in place it has made me anxious and irritated (goals could however work for you). What I know really works we for me is keeping a higher purpose and meaning for my life in mind and then building habits in support of the meaning and purpose. The critical element is discipline guided by value (in my case freedom, simplicity, and creativity). I am also aware that I need to do things because it is about experiencing and spreading joy, passion and fulfilment. Join me in the next year right here as I share this journey with you as it relates to all parts of life.
Perhaps you have better ways of being the sculptor and would like to share it – go right ahead. What I try and do here is foster energy and hopefully inspire action. If you would like to add and multiply this effort I truly welcome it!