What’s your aim in life
Over the past year and a bit, I have lost people and heard news in my close circles about the passing of young people in their 20’s and 30’s. Some unexpected, and some after a drawn-out illness. These deaths have got me thinking a lot more about life and what it means.
One of the questions I have had to ask myself and truthfully answer is, What exactly is my aim in life? Do I know what I want out of my life? What do I need to do, be or have that would make me smile at the end when I look back on my life. Would I be filled with regrets and woulda, coulda, shoulda? Or will I look back and be joyful for a life well spent.
What do I need to focus on right now, that will ensure I do not look back with regrets. It is a question everyone needs to answer. It is important because, if you do not personally define what you want out of your life, life and other people will define it for you. Everyone gets something out of life, but the most fulfilled people are those that carefully define what they want, go after it, and get exactly that from life.
Life’s ultimate pursuit?
So what is life’s ultimate pursuit? Is it Love, happiness, freedom, wealth, success, or a combination of some or all? The answer to this question is an individual one, no one can answer it for you. You have to be willing to push through past experiences, culture, norms, and expectations to figure it out.
I added this post to the Food For Thought category because my intention is not to answer this question for you, but to get you thinking. Like it’s often said, there are no right or wrong answers, but you have to figure out your truth and live your truth.
I am not going to attempt to fully discuss all the possible pursuits mentioned above, but I’ll briefly talk about a couple of them. If you are going define your life by the pursuit of something, and make it your aim in life, it’s important to make sure that it is not based on falsehood or something that is subjective and open to multiple interpretations.
Love is one of those topics that sometimes seem subjective, but I think Love is Love and at its core has the same meaning for everyone. The expressions may differ, but the motives and intentions have to be the same.
The type of love that would be worth pursuing with your life, should not be one based on just feelings and emotions, it has to be something more. I believe at its core, love is a decision to treat someone the way they deserve to be treated as a human being. It doesn’t matter whether they are your spouse, your child, or a stranger. Love is a decision, to choose to use your skills and resources to see your fellow human rise up to be all they can be.
To get to a point where you are able to genuinely care for and desire the upliftment of others could be something worth striving for. I would say if one dedicates their whole life to loving this way, and being loved in return, it could result in a fulfilled life, or not? I’ll let you decide.
The pursuit of happiness is included in the US Declaration of Independence as a fundamental inalienable right to freely pursue and live life in a way that makes you happy, as long as you don’t do anything illegal or infringe on the rights of others.
Is this a worthy pursuit to totally focus one’s existence on? to be fully engrossed in one’s own happiness? to make it one’s aim in life? Maybe, Maybe not. Give it some thought, and decide what this means to you.
Success is another subject that means different things to different people. But in the grand scheme of one’s life, what does a successful life mean to you. Is it measured by how much wealth you can amass, by the quality of your relationships, your health, accomplishments, impact?
The list of what success could mean is endless. What does it mean to you? How would you define success? If success is your aim in life, how would you measure how successful your life was?
What is freedom? Does it mean living without caution or guidelines? is it limited to freedom in certain areas of life?
I define freedom first as the power one holds over one’s life and attitude. The power to choose how you respond to people, events, and circumstances. The power you have to rise above all odds and choose the outcome of your life. The freedom from being victims of circumstances, or culture.
These two quotes say it best for me:
Live a life you can feel proud of in retrospect
You’ve probably guessed where I lean towards. I am still thinking and tweaking, but I want freedom not just for myself but for as many people as I can reach.
I hope this gets you thinking about what you want your legacy to be? what would your life be about? What do you really want out of life? Peace of mind? impact? happiness? Define it, and live by it. Whatever it is, make sure it’s something you’ve given careful thought to, not based on comparisons to other people and not just something you picked up along the way randomly and just adopted.
I’ll like to hear your thoughts, please leave a comment.