My kids really inspire me.
I listen to them, and watch them, and just think that it is such a wonderful life for those who can live in a world of endless possibilities. No limits.
Now right away I can hear you thinking, “Sure Mike, it’s a great life to be a kid. No responsibility, no job, no family to take care of, no bills to pay, no stress, of course they are happy all the time!” And I would say, well, you’ve got a point…but I would also ask you to consider how truly happy they are. And consider how much happiness they continue to manifest as they continue to be happy. When they let their imaginations run wild, they just seem to attract more fun, and well…more life!
So I always start thinking those “what if” type of thoughts; “What if I lived like that? What if we all lived like that?”
It sounds like a pretty crazy notion, I know. After all, we as adults couldn’t possibly live meaningful and responsible lives if all we did was follow our hearts, use our imaginations, chase our passions, and laugh all day, right? Right? Um…right?
You know what? I think we could. I think the only way that anyone can really live a meaningful life is to live a life that they are passionate about. It doesn’t make much sense to me to do it any other way. How can something as big as LIFE be meaningful to you if you’re not ALL IN? You have to be vested in the process for it to have value. And I would say that if you’re not diggin’ the way things are going for you right now – you need to ante up! (That’s two poker references in one paragraph, if you’re scoring at home).
Somewhere along the line though, we have all taken a pretty serious beat down from the culture we live in. And we’re not only introduced to limitation, but we are almost literally forced to accept it. We are painted into corners, led blindly into boxes and trapped by the fear of the unknown. We are taught that it is “sensible” to understand our shortcomings, and to not aim too high because disappointment or failure are sure to be waiting for us at every turn. If you start to really think about the advice you have been given throughout the years, it gets sort of depressing! I know that our parents and other relatives, teachers, coaches and various religious leaders probably didn’t mean to do us any harm. But, by repeating the age old concepts of limitation and scarcity, they really tried to blow it for us. I mean that stuff really sinks in. And before you know it, your subconscious mind is so filled with that junk that you couldn’t enjoy your life if you worked at the carnival!
Now look, we have to take some responsibility here, too. I’m not trying to suggest that we are victims, just because we were taught to aim low and not to pursue our wildest dreams. I’m just saying that it is what it is…so now we have to make a decision. To live or not to live, that is the question!
We can, of course , decide that it sounds a little silly to follow our hearts. Life is, after all, pretty serious, and we do have a lot of responsibility. Dreams are just for when you are asleep, some would say. Plus, so few people actually accomplish anything really amazing.
Or, we could get a little adventurous and decide that we are definitely worthy of a experiencing life to the fullest.
I’m choosing to go with the latter! Who’s with me? (I felt a little like Jerry Maguire when I wrote that)
I like the idea of no limitations. And you should, too. It means that we can be whatever we want to be if we set our minds on it. And the truth is, that if you focus on what you truly want, and you are able to pursue it with passion, then you CAN and WILL achieve it! Persistence is the force that failure cannot deal with. If you can learn that and put it to use, you will find that you are unstoppable.
Now how about that laughter thing? Kids laugh a lot.
In our house we pretty much live by this rule: If it isn’t fun, we’re not doing it. I heard Jack Canfield say that once about his life as well. And I think it’s an awesome way to look at things. If you don’t enjoy something or feel good while you’re doing it, what’s the point?
I learned a long time ago that laughter truly is the best medicine. I formed the belief that if I could laugh at things, myself included, then nothing in my life would ever really be that hard. And to this point, through quite a few trials and tough times, it has proven to be true. My life is absolutely filled with laughter. (Okay, look, a lot of it is my friends and family making fun of me, but that’s okay…it still works!)
You can provide yourself with instant relief from stress and pressure, and you can start to change your mood and attitude at will. You just have to be able to laugh.
This journey can be fantastic. We can smile, and we can be nice to each other. We can be a lot of fun to be around. We can feel good. All of this and even more can happen, if we truly start to live from our hearts.
My kids taught me this…