Or, do you get tired of your routine and think "what is it that I am missing in life?"
You aren't alone, in fact the vast majority of us battle with thoughts like this daily, not exactly sure what is missing but knowing that we don't want to be in the exact same position, doing the same things, feeling the same way 1-month from now.
How do you go about changing your life when you aren't really sure if or what is missing?
A good place to start is with the basics…human needs and desires:
1. Health and Security
Even though we all realize that basic health and security are critical needs we have as human beings, still many of us don't place health or security front and center in how we live our lives. We may intuitively know that we must be healthy to live, but then we go out and maintain unhealthy diets, overdose on sugar, eat fatty foods that slow our metabolism and do not get the basic amount of exercise each day that each of us need to remain healthy. Think of health and security as the foundation upon which your entire life is built…if that foundation is crumbling then a key part of what you are missing in life is to live in alignment with your core human needs.
You can easily change this by making some very simple changes in your diet and get 30-45 minutes of exercise each day (even if it is just a long walk). This takes conscious effort, but you will fill the void that exists in your life today the sooner you step up and set up your action plan.
What is it you are aiming for in life?
What are the values you strive to live by?
What "type" of life would you ideally lead, one of a fast-paced business executive, kicking back in a small beach house where you can surf all day, becoming a full-time writer or musician?
Of course these things may not happen tomorrow or even next month, but many of us deny ourselves of our core purpose in life just because we can't realize it in mere days?
By doing so we lose the key beacon of light that allows us to bring meaning to our life on a daily basis.
Without purpose, you have a huge gaping canyon in your life…find your purpose and you will make huge strides toward no longer missing a key piece of your future.
To find your purpose think in terms of what interests you most, what has given your life meaning in the past. What is it that you do where the universe seems to stand still, be perfectly at peace? Don't edit your thoughts based on whether you believe it is possible or impossible. The fact is that finding your beacon of light alone is a tremendously empowering thing.
Once you find your purpose, seek to expand that purpose in terms of what influence you can have on the world. How can you help, contribute or make better an element of society around you…this also helps us fulfill the human need to continually grow and relate to the environment around us.
3. Significance – Finding Where You Fit
Think of the times in life when you felt significant, you may have helped someone with a problem or task or you finished a goal that made a difference noticed by others…how did that make you feel?
Significance is a core human need that we all strive for in one way or another. Sometimes it can be trying to fit in…sometimes it can be deviant behavior as a way to impress a certain sub-group of peers.
If you think about it, most of our waking hours are spent trying to be significant to our spouse, family, friends, boss, customers, etc…
So, what if you begin to build significance into your life plan?
What if you set a plan around your long-term purpose in such a way as you "stack the deck" in your favor…where you set small tasks and goals with pre-defined significance so that you win each and every day and no longer have to search for significance as if you were looking for a lost item in a darkened room.
Most of us can say that significance is missing from your life, so fix that by making sure you win on this front each day of your life.
4. Connections…Internal and External
Another basic human need is to be connected…not just in the sense of an external loving relationship (yes that is important too), but in the sense first of self – where we are assured that we really know and have confidence in ourselves and THEN move outside to have meaningful connections with the world around us.
Common mistakes we make here are:
- Never get to know ourselves but rely completely on those around us to give us purpose, reason, values and goals…they need to be ours not someone else's
- As a result of the first point, we never learn to rely on ourselves. Because we don't really know ourselves how can we trust that we can handle anything that comes along? This leads to low self confidence, a sense of always running FROM things instead of embracing life
- Being afraid of everything…because we don't really know if we can handle the worst (and we always imagine that to be worse than it ever is) we live in fear and anxiety instead of hope, action and fulfillment
- We can't seem to attract the connections we want mainly because we never let people see the REAL you…how can you if you don't know who that is?
Learning to be mindful, getting a handle on our true values, beliefs and passions and knowing we can handle anything that comes into our life (good or bad) gives us the self confidence to embrace life, show people who we really are and finally make the connections that are missing in our lives today
Many of us have that empty feeling in our lives, like something big is missing and the clock continues to tick away…how do you find what is missing in your life?
Circle back, check your main health/security, purpose, significance and connections related needs. Most often what is missing in your life is from one of these 4 categories. Changing just one of them can result in major changes in your life breaking you out of your rut and setting you up for an amazing future.
Do you have something missing in your life? What do you think it is?