Choosing A Life You Love
We all know people whose lives just seem to work. They have successful careers. Healthy relationships. Super cool interests. They are happy a lot of the time. How do they do it? It isn’t that they are just incredibly lucky. They do the work to create lives that they love. They have a clear sense of who they are, what they value, and where they want to go in life. And they then make deliberate choices every day that align with these factors.
Connecting to who you are at your core requires looking at yourself. Getting real with yourself. You need to let go of ideas about what you “should” be doing and instead connect deeply to who you truly are and are not. That’s when you make an impact, and where you find fulfillment. Here are three tips to help you create your ideal life, a life you love.
Know your core values.
What do you stand for? What sets you apart? What makes your heart beat? What do you bring to team meetings, conversations and decisions? What do people count on you for? Your values are the things that you believe are important in the way you live and work. They ideally determine your priorities, and, deep down, they’re probably the measures you use to tell if your life is turning out the way you want it to. When the things that you do and the way you behave match your values, life is usually good – you’re satisfied and content. But when these don’t align with your values, that’s when things feel… wrong. This can be a real source of unhappiness.
If you value family, but you have to work 70-hour weeks in your job, will you feel internal stress and conflict? And if you value collaboration, yet you work in a highly competitive sales environment, are you likely to be satisfied with your job? Choose 4 – 8 core values that are authentic and meaningful for you.
You will have the greatest probability of living a life you love if you know what it is that you want and you go after it. That’s where goals come in. Goals give you focus, inspiration and purpose. They help you get clear on the impact you want to make.
A great practice is to set 1-year, 5-year and 10-year goals for the various realms of your life that are important for you, such as professional, personal growth, health/wellness, relationship, financial. Make them audacious enough that it isn’t a given that you will achieve them, and will fail sometimes. That doesn’t make you a failure. That’s what it takes to live a big life! Check in with your goals on a quarterly basis and adjust so they continue to be a source of guidance.
Choose ‘your people’ wisely.
Be intentional with who you spend time with. Surround yourself with supportive people who want you to be happy and successful. Choose bosses, colleagues, mentors, coaches and friends who call you forth to be your best self, who love you enough to be straight with you and who give you space to grow, learn, fail – and shine. Let them know your values and your goals, and ask them to help you be accountable to living in alignment with them.
There is no single version of an ideal life. The key is for you to be clear on who you are at your core, set goals that are real and motivating to you (not to your boss, partner or parents), then make deliberate choices every day that allow you to be your best self and create a life you love.
This guest post was authored by Rochelle Davidson
Rochelle Davidson is co-author of Work Freely: Love your job. Love your life. Rochelle began her career with a Bachelor of Commerce from University of British Columbia and a MA in Applied Behavioral Sciences from Bastyr University.
Rochelle is a wife, mom to rescue dogs, endurance cyclist, adventure traveler, author and certified professional executive coach. Her life was rocked when, at only 35 years old, she heard the words “you’ve got cancer.” Her personal experience fueled her mission to see people and organizations thrive, not merely survive. Founder and Chief Embolden Officer of Rochelle Davidson Coaching and Consulting, Rochelle has worked with such organizations as lululemon athletica, Accenture and Crystal Decisions.