“Every day, think as you wake up, ‘Today I am fortunate to be alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others; to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings.'”
Let the Dalai Lama’s words inspire you to enrich your life. One of the best ways to develop yourself is through the information you consume.Advertising
Reading enriches life.
As you read, whether fiction or nonfiction, you expand your mind. Reading allows you to experience new worlds, perspectives and ideas.
The more you read, the better you can relate and react to the world around you. As you process all of this information, you will find it is also easier to come up with your own new, unique ideas.
It is up to you to choose reading that will enrich you.
Enriching your life with reading can also be fun and enjoyable. However, reading isn’t the only medium to enrich your life. You can also select audio and video programs that are enriching.Advertising
The question then arises, how to choose materials that are enriching. The best way to choose materials that enrich your life is to ask yourself a few questions.
Is there something new to learn?
Choosing materials that teach you something new will expand your universe.
- Watch a TV Program on how to do your next home improvement project.
- Learn about your next vacation destination through guidebooks, podcasts, articles or videos.
- Explore the culture through local legends
- Learn some phrases in the local language
- Immerse yourself in the history of the peoples, land or architecture
- If you are choosing a fiction book for your enjoyment you can still find it enriching.
- You may learn about a new place, time or even a profession the characters have.
Strive to learn at least one new thing every day. It’s easy when you surround yourself with great information and resources.Advertising
Is the material mostly positive?
This will not be everyone’s preference. However, I find that keeping the information I consume at least 90% positive makes life more enjoyable. It is easier to see the best in the people and world around you when you focus on the good that surrounds us.
- Choose news outlets that focus on more positive stories (or simply change the channel for ugly news).
- Look for sources that focus on positive news
- Read biographies of people who inspire and have accomplished great things.
- Watch movies that have a positive, uplifting message.
Am I interested in the topic?
Consuming information that isn’t of interest to you can be drudgery. Remember your school days: what was your least favorite subject? I bet the thought of having to attend that class was torture some days.
Better to find a topic or an aspect of the topic that interests you.Advertising
- Make a list of things you’ve always wanted to learn about.
- What are your favorite tv shows? They may help point you towards subjects you would like to learn more about.
- Dislike a topic? Look for a method that makes it more interesting.
- If you don’t like history, you might enjoy historical fiction or movies that are period based.
- You may find reading a nonfiction book is a challenge, whereas listening to the same book in audio format while driving is easy and enjoyable.
Reading enriches life. As you enrich your life through your entertainment choices, take a moment to journal each day about what you learned. Processing and recording your thoughts in this way will help you get even more from the material and formulate new ideas.
Featured photo credit: Ed Yourdon via flickr.com
Last Updated on February 15, 2019
Why Is Goal Setting Important to a Truly Fulfilling Life?
In Personal Development-speak, we are always talking about goals, outcomes, success, desires and dreams. In other words, all the stuff we want to do, achieve and create in our world.
And while it’s important for us to know what we want to achieve (our goal), it’s also important for us to understand why we want to achieve it; the reason behind the goal or some would say, our real goal.
Why is goal setting important?
1. Your needs and desire will be fulfilled.
Sometimes when we explore our “why”, (why we want to achieve a certain thing) we realize that our “what” (our goal) might not actually deliver us the thing (feeling, emotion, internal state) we’re really seeking.
For example, the person who has a goal to lose weight in the belief that weight loss will bring them happiness, security, fulfillment, attention, popularity and the partner of their dreams. In this instance, their “what” is weight-loss and their “why” is happiness (etc.) and a partner.
Six months later, they have lost the weight (achieved their goal) but as is often the case, they’re not happier, not more secure, not more confident, not more fulfilled and in keeping with their miserable state, they have failed to attract their dream partner.
After all, who wants to be with someone who’s miserable? They achieved their practical goal but still failed to have their needs met.
So they set a goal to lose another ten pounds. And then another. And maybe just ten more. With the destructive and erroneous belief that if they can get thin enough, they’ll find their own personal nirvana. And we all know how that story ends.
2. You’ll find out what truly motivates you
The important thing in the process of constructing our best life is not necessarily what goals we set (what we think we want) but what motivates us towards those goals (what we really want).
The sooner we begin to explore, identify and understand what motivates us towards certain achievements, acquisitions or outcomes (that is, we begin moving towards greater consciousness and self awareness), the sooner we will make better decisions for our life, set more intelligent (and dare I say, enlightened) goals and experience more fulfilment and less frustration.
We all know people who have achieved what they set out to, only to end up in the same place or worse (emotionally, psychologically, sociologically) because what they were chasing wasn’t really what they were needing.
What we think we want will rarely provide us with what we actually need.
3. Your state of mind will be a lot healthier
We all set specific goals to achieve/acquire certain things (a job, a car, a partner, a better body, a bank balance, a title, a victory) because at some level, most of us believe (consciously or not) that the achievement of those goals will bring us what we really seek; joy, fulfilment, happiness, safety, peace, recognition, love, acceptance, respect, connection.
Of course, setting practical, material and financial goals is an intelligent thing to do considering the world we live in and how that world works.
But setting goals with an expectation that the achievement of certain things in our external, physical world will automatically create an internal state of peace, contentment, joy and total happiness is an unhealthy and unrealistic mindset to inhabit.
What you truly want and need
Sometimes we need to look beyond the obvious (superficial) goals to discover and secure what we really want.
Sadly, we live in a collective mindset which teaches that the prettiest and the wealthiest are the most successful.
Some self-help frauds even teach this message. If you’re rich or pretty, you’re happy. If you’re both, you’re very happy. Pretty isn’t what we really want; it’s what we believe pretty will bring us. Same goes with money.
When we cut through the hype, the jargon and the self-help mumbo jumbo, we all have the same basic goals, desires and needs:
Joy, fulfilment, happiness, safety, peace, recognition, love, acceptance, respect, connection.
Nobody needs a mansion or a sport’s car but we all need love.
Nobody needs massive pecs, six percent body-fat, a face lift or bigger breasts but we all need connection, acceptance and understanding.
Nobody needs to be famous but we all need peace, calm, balance and happiness.
The problem is, we live in a culture which teaches that one equals the other. If only we lived in a culture which taught that real success is far more about what’s happening in our internal environment, than our external one.
It’s a commonly-held belief that we’re all very different and we all have different goals — whether short term or long term goals. But in many ways we’re not, and we don’t; we all want essentially the same things.
Now all you have to do is see past the fraud and deception and find the right path.
Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com