Live Life

Learn to Live Fully: 3 Ways How

Digging is hard work. I’ve dug lots of irrigation ditches and post holes while growing up on a cattle ranch in Wyoming. It’s dirty work because the only way to clear a clogged ditch is to get in the muck and shovel out heavy, sodden clumps of debris so the water can run smoothly on down the ditch.

Often, the stuff clogging the system is not visible from the top because irrigation water tends to be muddy. It’s only after you start that your shovel finds more mass to the blockage. I hate digging out irrigation ditches because there’s always something more to be dug out.

Whether it’s shoveling out the crap from an irrigation ditch or from our life experiences, nothing moves forward until the deed is done. Tamping it down may take care of the clutter, but only for a while, and it will eventually clog the entire system.

Digging down in our own lives means more than skimming the surface. Our society would lead us to believe that peeling back the surface layers is all that is needed to understand ourselves. Not true, but I suspect you already know this deep down.

Because deep down is where our true nature emerges. It’s a journey to get there; it can even be an adventure if we let it. The further down we go, the more transparent we become, and more importantly, the more authentic we become.

Once we regain touch with our authentic self—sometimes called our inner voice—we can begin to dream about how things might be different and take the first steps toward doing what is fulfilling. We are not afraid to dream as children; as adults, however, we grow timid. We let our need for success supplant the need to follow our bliss, calling, passion, or dream.

As our practical side takes over, we stop dreaming. Instead, we settle. We get stuck in a rut. Unfortunately, the only difference between a rut and a coffin are the dimensions.

If we are to live fully, we need to get back in touch with our dreams. Never worry that they are too grand or beyond our capacity to achieve. At the beginning of this adventurous journey, the important thing is to find your vision.

Here are 3 recommendations on how to live fully:

1. Ask Great Questions – You have a life story and your story can be powerful if you let it. Questions can be catalysts that get you to think about your own experiences. Ask specific questions that bring a smile to your face as you tell your story:

  • Who is the happiest person you know?
  • Who are the people you like and respect the most? Why?
  • What are you curious about?
  • When does time seem to fly?
  • What bores you?
  • What makes you different from other people or members of your family?
  • How do you want to be remembered?
  • What excites you?
  • What is in your bucket list of things to do in life?

Questions are effective because they help us remember the things that are important to us, things we might have forgotten. Things that are buried . . . this is what digging down is about.

If you want a great life, ask this great question: “What would create excitement and life for me?”

2. Start Now – If you don’t start living your dream now, you’re on the deferred life plan—postponing life until retirement or until you’ve made enough money to do what you want.

If you’re honest, isn’t that the real reason you want to be a millionaire? Not so much as to buy more stuff but to have the time and freedom to pursue the things that create excitement and life for you.

  • Name the things that you look forward to in your day or week.
  • Recognize that your dream is a calling and that you may have more than one.
  • Stop being a slave to the life or job that is not fulfilling.
  • Minimize time spent on meaningless work.
  • Create time to pursue projects that do create excitement and life.

3. Blaze a TrailThe 4-Hour Workweek is a fantasy, not a dream. Most of us will never find the perfect job that brings unending fulfillment; if we need to make house payments and send our kids through school, we’re going to have to put our shoulder into it. But there are ways we can follow our dream regardless of our circumstances.

  • Align your strengths with a career you feel passionate about.
  • Evaluate the job prospects in this field over the next five, ten, or twenty years.
  • Ask people who have succeeded for input.
  • Look for like-minded people and begin telling them about what you want to do.
  • Listen to their stories and learn from them.
  • Roll up your shirtsleeves and produce something that is aligned to your dream.
  • Network and join organizations in your field that can create opportunities for you.

Digging down to expose your true nature can be hard work, but it’s worth the effort. In a world where you can be anything, sometimes the greatest thing is to be yourself.

LaRae Quy was an FBI agent, both a counterintelligence and undercover agent, for 25 years. She exposed foreign spies and recruited them to work for the U.S. Government. Now she writes and speaks about empowering others to seek deeper meaning in life and work via her blog Empower the Leader in You. You can find her on Twitter as @LaRaeQuy

Photo credit: ‘Funny Catch‘ by BigStock

 

  • http://www.successbuildingblocks.com/ Grady Pruitt

    “As our practical side takes over, we stop dreaming. ” 

    Wow.. I never thought of it like that, but you’re right. The more practical we get, the harder it is for us to dream. 

    In today’s fast paced world, it seem we leave ourselves little chance to explore the inner us.  But that is what we need to learn to do if we are to grow. I know I don’t spend as much time doing this as I should, but it’s something I”m going to start doing.  Thanks for sharing!

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      Hi Grady,

      Exploring our inner side is a little like working out . . . we know it’s good for us but it’s hard work! Once we do it, though, we feel better and that know that we’ve done something good for ourselves.

      Keep at it! Thanks for stopping by.

  • Lima621

    I had a good 9- 5 job as a Sound designer for a big International compay. I also did a bit of Graphic and web  design on the side as well a being an almost full time Pub singer doing around 80-100 gigs per year.  I burned the candle at both ends, so to speak, for the best part of 20 years….then the Burnout hit me like a Sledgehammer. At 49 I sat down and had a serious talk with myself.  What about pension..what about a regular income….AM I HAPPY???
    The Answer to number 3 was a big NO – I was not happy in my job and I just couldn`t imagine doing it until I reached Retirement (Would have been no Problem).

    I went Deep…very deep and made a concious decision to give up my day job. From now on  I was only going to do what I wanted to do…that was the Music….I play in Clubs & Pubs,at  festivals..at private parties and just about everywhere else. The regular wage has gone and I have to be sure that I have enough income to live on…..thats the Tradeoff and the risk….and I`m loving it. I travel and meet interesting people, give them something that they want or need (The Songs) and get paid for doing it.

    So whats with the regular income?…I found out HOW LITTLE I NEEDED and not HOW MUCH!. This was an important issue. Most people say “How much do we need”.  How much is enough?…once you know how much is enough for you then you will always have enough!  -I earn more than enough with my Music.

    So what about the Pension?
    I have several pension plans and their performance over the last 20 years is far from what I was promised be the Insurance companies. 9/11, the financial crashes and the Euro crisis all serve to decimate my investments. The Insurance companies and Bankers lied to me as they do with most people.

    Maybe I won´t even reach Retirement age… but I will die having done something that I loved on my own terms. My biggest motivator is that I may die tomorrow…if I do then it will be with a smile on my face.

    My children are grown up,  University graduates and are good people…I have told them to live now and under no circumstances forsake something now for the sake of a later that might not come or if it does, will be different from the one we are being sold.

    Today, when people ask me how I am I answer “Happy”

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      What a great story and thanks so much for sharing! You are right about one thing: if you’re working for money, you’ll never have “enough.” There is always someone out there with more toys or more STUFF so it’s like a black hole that will never get filled. 

      The freedom to do what we really want to do – that is living fully. Congratulations on living that dream.

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      What a great story and thanks so much for sharing! You are right about one thing: if you’re working for money, you’ll never have “enough.” There is always someone out there with more toys or more STUFF so it’s like a black hole that will never get filled. 

      The freedom to do what we really want to do – that is living fully. Congratulations on living that dream.

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      What a great story and thanks so much for sharing! You are right about one thing: if you’re working for money, you’ll never have “enough.” There is always someone out there with more toys or more STUFF so it’s like a black hole that will never get filled. 

      The freedom to do what we really want to do – that is living fully. Congratulations on living that dream.

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      What a great story and thanks so much for sharing! You are right about one thing: if you’re working for money, you’ll never have “enough.” There is always someone out there with more toys or more STUFF so it’s like a black hole that will never get filled. 

      The freedom to do what we really want to do – that is living fully. Congratulations on living that dream.

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      What a great story and thanks so much for sharing! You are right about one thing: if you’re working for money, you’ll never have “enough.” There is always someone out there with more toys or more STUFF so it’s like a black hole that will never get filled. 

      The freedom to do what we really want to do – that is living fully. Congratulations on living that dream.

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      What a great story and thanks so much for sharing! You are right about one thing: if you’re working for money, you’ll never have “enough.” There is always someone out there with more toys or more STUFF so it’s like a black hole that will never get filled. 

      The freedom to do what we really want to do – that is living fully. Congratulations on living that dream.

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      What a great story and thanks so much for sharing! You are right about one thing: if you’re working for money, you’ll never have “enough.” There is always someone out there with more toys or more STUFF so it’s like a black hole that will never get filled. 

      The freedom to do what we really want to do – that is living fully. Congratulations on living that dream.

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      What a great story and thanks so much for sharing! You are right about one thing: if you’re working for money, you’ll never have “enough.” There is always someone out there with more toys or more STUFF so it’s like a black hole that will never get filled. 

      The freedom to do what we really want to do – that is living fully. Congratulations on living that dream.

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      What a great story and thanks so much for sharing! You are right about one thing: if you’re working for money, you’ll never have “enough.” There is always someone out there with more toys or more STUFF so it’s like a black hole that will never get filled. 

      The freedom to do what we really want to do – that is living fully. Congratulations on living that dream.

  • http://www.youremotionalfreedom.com/ Ben

    We are definately taught to ignore the hard or deep questions but it is definately something that is needed to explore what is inside so that we can let it go.

    On the surface it can seem we don’t have much limiting programming around something until we really start to explore it and then are like “wow.. no wonder i’m not getting what I want”.

    And clearing that stuff is powerful.. and getting to the true nature! :)

    -Ben

  • http://www.youremotionalfreedom.com/ Ben

    We are definately taught to ignore the hard or deep questions but it is definately something that is needed to explore what is inside so that we can let it go.

    On the surface it can seem we don’t have much limiting programming around something until we really start to explore it and then are like “wow.. no wonder i’m not getting what I want”.

    And clearing that stuff is powerful.. and getting to the true nature! :)

    -Ben

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

    • http://twitter.com/LaRaeQuy LaRae Quy

      Thanks Lalqala!

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

  • Lalqala

    As an intellectual woman, I can honestly add, that this is by far the best article
    regarding advise, I have ever read.

    Thanks,
    Lulu

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