Are you living the life you want?


By: Anja Uitdehaag

Some people know from an early age exactly what they want to be when they are adults — and how they can get there.

Others just drift along and let life happen to them. They have no specific objective in life; beyond the vague notion that they want to be happy.

Such a person will drift from one day to the next, without any sense of purpose or direction.

How much time do you spend thinking about the things you’re going to do one day? Do you initiate things in your life or do you just react? Do you feel that life is slipping by quicker than you would like? Have you ever experienced that restless, anxious feeling and weren’t sure what to do about it?

Every single one of us needs meaning!

I firmly believe that regardless of what you choose to do in life the starting point is managing yourself. To do this effectively, you need a personal plan.

Planning your life helps achieve your purpose. It doesn’t really matter what it is, as long as it is something you want.

Planning your life is all about finding out who you are as a person, what makes you tick, what your values are and what deeply satisfies your soul.

Finding out who you are and what you want to achieve is a way of reaching your full potential.

Ask yourself:

  • How do you spend your time?
  • What do you feel about the things in your life that you do?
  • How important are they?
  • Are there things you hate doing and activities you love?
  • What would you choose to do if you had no obligations to anyone?

When you’re evaluating what is most important, go into every aspect of your life and think about how you’d like to feel and what you envision.

Here is a list of some of the areas of life you should think about:

  • Home
  • Friendships
  • Romantic Relationships
  • Family
  • Career
  • Health
  • Financial
  • Intellectual
  • Spiritual
  • Travel
  • Social
  • Lifestyle/Where You Live
  • Community
  • Hobbies

Once done, your overview will help you to make choices that move you closer to defining your goals. Finally all these goals collectively deliver your big dream.

Of course there will be many things beyond us in life. Mapping out your future does not mean that things will happen this way.

I am 100% sure that there is no chance that my life will turn out exactly the way I envision it to. And that is OK: the beauty of life is in the unexpected and unplanned events.

But I don’t think it’s bad to have a vision for my future and a sense of purpose and direction.



Interesting reading:

The rock-pebble-sand-water-in-a-jar story of Dr. Stephen R. Covey (The seven habits of highly effective people) illustrates how a lack of planning can derail your life in significant ways.

The rocks represent the important things in your life such as your family, children, friends, work, or whatever you value in your life. The pebbles, sand, and water represent the less important yet necessary things you do on a regular basis such as commuting to work, running errands, answering emails, shopping, and so on.

If you do not plan your life, there’s a big chance that you will fail to put in all the big rocks in the jar of your life before everything else, so you will not be able to fit them all in. You will find in the end that your life, full as it is of endless tasks and activities, is empty because you failed to fit in important parts of it.


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