Recently, I took a goal setting class taught by Go Mighty extraordinaire, Sarah Bryden-Brown. Thanks to the class, I was able to update my life list (also known around here as Aurora) and really refocus on my goals.
As a part of the class, Sarah challenged us to figure out what our key question is. What question do we turn to in order to help us determine whether or not a goal fits on our list.
For me, I knew immediately that my question is: Does this fall in line with my Life Manifesto?
At the time that I decided that this was my question, I hadn’t written my Life Manifesto yet (typical). I choose the words Life Manifesto because they represented this simple idea: my key personal values are what I turn to to help me determine my priorities and goals. Immediately I knew I needed to write those down. I needed a list (a life manifesto) of my guiding principles to help me determine my priroities.
It’s funny, because I don’t know if at any time previously in my life I would have been ready to write this. I’m not sure if all of these key ideas would be so clearly formed in my head. I didn’t even really know that they were so clear until I sat down to try to write this manifesto. I expected that something as weighty as a Life Manifesto would take me a while, but when I sat down to write it just flowed from my heart. I didn’t really have a template to follow, so I just started with the things I believe and followed each of those beliefs with a commitment to the things I will do to live out those beliefs.
I fully expect that this manifesto may change and evolve as I change, but for now this feels completely representative of my beliefs and hopes. I haven’t really organized these more thoughtfully yet (like by grouping the ones that have to do with how I percieve myself vs. how I believe in treating others), but I think just getting them out is a good start.
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 will learn 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
>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
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.
Do you have a life manifesto? If so, I’d love to read it!
P. S. Do you guys remember my amazing first blog crush, Joy from Frock Files?? I am thrilled to be featured today on her Bright Lights series. Joy is one of the most genuine, lovely people you could ever meet, and I’m so happy that our lives have crossed paths. Check out a little snapshot into my life over on Frock Files.