Did you get your homework done? Our assignment was to: 1. Envision your Best Life and write it in one or two sentences and 2. Write down your Perfect Day.
Here’s what I came up with:
My Best Life allows me to meet my needs and those of my family and friends. It has time for writing, exploring, learning, volunteering, laughing, dancing, praying and resting.
Now this may seem generic and amorphous, but take a second look. Those two sentences provide me with a frame on which I can build a Best Life.
Certainly, meeting needs is most important. I have bills to pay, groceries to buy and clothing is not optional in most places I frequent. Family and friends may not often require monetary assistance, but they do expect my attention. So from the first sentence in my Best Life, I can see that I will need money and time. The second sentence describes what I want to do with my time. These things are important to me.
In other words, in order to live my Best Life, I need income and some control of my time. Is there a job that provides what I need or should I look into being self-employed?
My Perfect Day begins with getting household chores done. Don’t laugh; I’m one of those people who finds satisfaction in clean counters and doing dishes by hand. I like mowing the lawn and weeding a patch of flowerbed. An hour or less—I’m not fanatical—but it makes me feel accomplished. Then a little exercise and I mean a little, no more than 30 minutes. A shower, make tea and it’s time to write. Lunch with friends or colleagues (to discuss the charitable project we’re working on) and then back to the keyboard for a couple of hours. Finally, preparing a dinner and hanging out on the deck with a good book or in front of the television with family.
Somewhere in there, I identified the Dream. Mine seems to be a snapshot of a professional novelist’s life.
Of course, the Perfect Day differs with an individual’s method of acquiring income. If I had to stick a day job in there, perfection would certainly look different, but I could still see Nirvana if the job allowed me to be authentic.
Authenticity in work will mean different things to each of us.
So for the next homework assignment, let’s examine authenticity. List 4 things you would need in order to feel that you were doing YOUR authentic work.
We’re on the road to Reinvention, here. Let’s take our time and get it right.