Check out all of my latest Aurora posts here.
It’s a word that gives me hope. Each new day starts with a new dawn. una aurora.
Before I started Not Merely Living, years ago, I lived in Chile for a while and studied Literatura Hispanica. And while I was there, I kept a blog called una aurora y los mismos cielos and later just Aurora when I moved back to the states.
But that idea, a new dawn and the same skies, was so beautiful to me. That even across the world I was staring up each morning to the new sky.
Each new dawn makes me feel as though I could do anything. Because each day is a new chance to live out your dreams and to embrace the life you want for yourself. To reach for the moon!
The first steps to living your dreams are writing them down, saying them out loud, and then making a plan for achieving them. I’m trying to make those steps an active practice for myself so that I can continue being the person I believe in.
So here are my dreams. Big and Small.
I’m writing them down here, and I’ll keep adding to this list until it gets as big as my dreams can imagine.
Update March 2013: I recently took a class from Go Mighty to get some tips on developing my life list. I’ve added some new items and changed a few around. I also wrote a Life Manifesto to help guide my aurora:
I believe. . . that stories have the power to join us together in ways that few other things can. They allow us to see the humanity we share and to believe that we, at our core, are more alike than we are different. A truly great story makes me feel alive and hopeful and reborn.
>I will. . . continue telling the story of my life in real and loud ways without fear of judgment or failure.
I believe. . . in giving people the benefit of the doubt. Believing in the good intentions and good will of others makes a huge impact on how we see and treat each other. I believe in always coming from a place love (in the broadest sense of the word). I believe that an open heart goes all the way.
>I will . . . meet people where they are. I will always strive to bring an open heart and mind to any encounter, relationship, meeting, conversation, or experience. I will try to assume that everyone else is doing the same (even when they don’t act like it).
I believe. . . learning is the key to a well lived life. That everyone should have the right to pursue knowledge. That we are all teachers. That the greatest gift you can give is to share your knowledge, experience, insights, and beliefs with as many people as you can. That there is no single life curriculum, and so learning as many perspectives as possible is the key to a fuller perspective.
>I will. . . desperately and passionately pursue the unknown. I will not be afraid of things that seem too complicated, sophisticated or technical for my understanding. I will grab at the information that awaits me and devour it. I willlearn to know, to do, to make all the things that I dream of knowing, doing and making. I will always share the wealth of knowledge with anyone who is interested.
I believe. . . that “Everything you want is on the other side of fear.” (George Addair) I believe that the greatest fears that hold me back on an every day basis are my fears of failure, perfection, rightness, and sameness. I believe that these are all imaginary barriers that I can break down with a brave heart, a full imagination, and a good will. I believe that the fear of the unknown is the silliest fear of all. You can’t love something or someone until you know it/them.
>I will . . . face the fear. Live with it. But not be deterred by it. I will doggedly pursue “the other side.” I will never be afraid to jump in feet first into the deep end of the unknown, because let’s face it, that’s probably exactly where I’ll find buried treasure.
I believe . . . that we are how we are (as opposed to just what we do). I believe in prioritizing the feelings and happiness and peace of others. I believe we have the power to choose how we touch the lives around us. I believe that that choice makes all the difference.
>I will. . . make an active, daily choice to love, respect, and value the people in my life.
I believe . . . that I am not changed by peoples’ perceptions of me (for the better or the worse). I believe that my choices should be based on what I want and need and not what I think that I should want and need.
>I will. . . stop and ask myself what I really want. I will listen to my inner voice. I will sing my own lyrics (even if they aren’t the right ones). I will dance at times that call for dancing (whether or not it’s appropriate).
I believe . . . that time and experiences are more valuable than things. I believe that memories are the only way to get time back, but even then you can’t relive it.Carpe Diem y’all.
>I will . . . strive to always be fully present in this moment and in this life. I will be grateful for the minutes, the hours, and the days—the exciting and the mundane—the celebrations and the sunsets. I will not take this one, precious life for granted.
I believe . . . that passion is as important as IQ, raw talent, skill, and/or experience. I believe that caring and showing you care and believing in something are the strongest ways to move the needle, change the dialogue, and/or make things better.
>I will . . . always live with passion. Always.
write a life manifesto
write a the book
memorize my favorite poems
drink champagne under the eiffel tower
build a disaster preparedness kit
live without clutter (for one month)
leave all of my worldly possessions and travel
organize my financial information
organize all of my photos so that they are searchable
make a book bucket list: A-G, H-M, N-S
hike Machu Piccu
eat pizza in italy
practice Tae Kwon Do again
print a photo a day for a year
drive down the California coast
make art for our home
write a list of all of my favorite card games and document the rules
declutter our apartment
to lead rock climb
to speak vietnamese
to speak Italian
to speak french
to cook 30 key meals (a month’s worth)
to drive a motorcycle or scooter
to make my own piece of furniture
to knit socks
to scuba dive
to use my sewing machine like my grams
to line dance
(check out Codecademy)
to be a really good poker player
my own dress
a quilt (inspired by grams)
a fancy blouse
a tote bag
a dress shirt for viet
my own halloween costume
add more items to my list
I am grateful for each new aurora and the promise it brings. Here’s to being the balloon-
Check out all of my latest Aurora posts here.