What Does It Mean "to live"?

January 26, 2017|Lauren Horrell

 Often times we hear the famous sayings "live life to the fullest" or "live your life." What thoughts come to mind when you are approached with those sayings? Do you consider yourself living your life and to the fullest? Maybe? Maybe not? Or not sure? Well, my question for you is, what does it mean "to live"? Think about it...

 Throughout life we often miss moments all the time, whether they be important or not, they go unnoticed. Tara Stiles once mentioned, "if we obsessed over fully living them all we might spontaneously combust, or appear intensely hyper and loony." Why is that? Well, we tune out for all sorts of reason. Moments that we miss are due to the fact that we're tired, depressed, uninterested, bored, or simply lost in thought about the million other places we need to be. Another way to say this is, "we're not present." We often catch ourselves looking in the rear view mirror instead of looking in front of us, therefore causing our attention to be swayed away from the precious moments to come.

 Our world is an exciting and interesting place and when we miss moments because of distractions we aren't in tune with ourselves. Being in tune with ourselves is more beneficial than focusing only on our immediate needs, wants, and desires because we develop a sense of happiness and are satisfied with who we are. The strongest connection we can develop as individuals is the one with ourselves, internally and externally. When we focus all our attention on our immediate needs, wants, and desires, we may achieve some or all, which satisfies us at the time, but only for a short period. Learning how to set short-term and long-term goals will be valuable to developing a purpose with ourselves.Yes, short-term goals will satisfy us quicker, but when we set long-term goals as well, we can create short-term goals within it. This approach will keep us moving forward.We have to learn to let things happen instead of forcing them because when we force something to happen the process there and the outcome usually aren't in our favor.

 Take these 5 simple ways to live more fully and put them to the test:

 1. Observe - Do you ever take the time to observe what is going on around you? You may be surprised to realize how many moments you can encounter when you take the time to observe. On the other side, we can overlook the surrounding area, causing us to miss moments that can develop.

 2. Take in - Often times we build up this wall to protect us from all the bad things we think might happen in the world or to us and we develop a false sense and eventually block everything out. We have to learn to take in whatever life puts in our path and go from there. So, when vulnerability becomes just another feeling we experience, we become more familiar with it over time and allow it to flow through us. 

 3. Respond - Have you ever responded to something the wrong way? Well, the reason for that is because our reactions are colored with our psychology and mood. We have to learn to not muddle through and find room for authentic responses. Once we find the clarity between the two we can experience a much deeper meaning.

4. Pay attention - We pay attention to what we allow ourselves to pay attention to. We can respond mindfully (aware or careful) or react mindlessly (without thinking) to what we are paying attention to. But when we use our observing capabilities, we become more aware of moments and therefore know if we should respond mindfully or react.mindlessly.

 5. Enjoy - The most important part! When you feel theres no purpose to anything, life would be miserable and there would be no enjoyment. If thats the case, your approach to life needs to be re-evaluated because there are endless opportunities and moments to experience to not enjoy it. Have fun and enjoy yourself.