Name five things that you do that are your most favorite things to do. Whether big or little, what do you most like to do? Could be after school time with your kids. Could be your annual mountain climbing conquest. Could be playing the piano or teaching someone to read or weekends at your lake house or going to lunch with your best friend. It could be your work but here we’re really talking about whatever brings inner satisfaction.
Your five favorite things that you do
It may take a bit of time for you to remember them all. The very moment you start to name favorite things, more are going to come racing to mind. You’ll be in your shower tomorrow morning and suddenly you’ll say to yourself, ‘I remember! I love decorating for the seasons, of course for Christmas but also Thanksgiving and Halloween and St. Paddy’s day and all of them.’ That goes on your favorite things you do list.
Have a bit of fun as you remember all your favorites. Likely your list is already far more than five. Our brains just love going to the things we most enjoy so let your mind explore and generate your list of favorite things you do.
Once you’ve remembered all the things you love doing and you’ve narrowed your list to your top five, think about how often you do what you most love to do. Look at each of your favorites and remember when you last did them. Some of us keep their favorites in their everyday life – if you regularly do what you love doing, then congratulate yourself and keep on doing what you love to do.
On the other hand, some of us get so caught up with the must-do’s that their favorite things fall off their daily or weekly or even monthly list. It takes not time to lose track of them altogether. If your everyday has become so full, so intense that you no longer include whatever it is you most love doing, then it is time to stop, look at what you are doing and make a plan.
Why don’t you do the things you love to do?
But first, before the planning, ask yourself what caused you to stop doing what you love to do. Could be everyday busyness or it could be weariness. Life today can be so intense that we get weary and it feels as if we’re dissatisfied. In part, dissatisfaction can be the result of not doing what you love to do, making life more like a treadmill and less the lives we love.
Every day we’re bombarded by an endless stream of stuff – whether those Twitter, InstaGram or FaceBook posts or new podcasts or breaking news or the laundry list of must-do’s, we can get to a place of seeming overwhelm and just stop doing the stuff we actually like.
If you’re there, feeling maxed out while not actually getting to do what it is you love doing, take a mental moment to make a plan. Identify what has kept you away – money, time or even just the blahs. Maybe it’s as simple as there’s no one to do it with.
Only when you know what bumped your favorite things out of your life, can you take the steps to make a change. Once you’ve identified the what and why for not doing what you love to do, then decide on the actions you’ll need to take to manage whatever is holding you back. Make a list of those actions you’ll need to take, in other words, make a plan.
Now, it is so easy to make a plan but never actually make that plan happen. To fix that, be sure your plan includes the steps you will take to make your plan happen. Include every step you’ll need to take to bring your plan to life. If you don’t know what to do, what actions to take, then your plan will likely not work. So, to get to back to doing what you love, be sure your action plan has the step-by-steps.
Life is not a straight line
As you take each step on your plan, it’s likely you’ll make missteps, you may fall back on your old ways. That’s very normal when you are making a change even one that means you’ll be back to doing the things you love. If you stop taking your action, if slip-up, be kind to yourself. Accept lapses for what they are and get back to your plan.
Best of all, be sure to congratulate yourself for each success on each step of your plan. That’s right, your successes are accomplishing each step on your plan, one at a time. Don’t complete one without acknowledging your success with your mental high-five or whatever other way you choose to say good job to yourself.
Your purpose here, to be doing what you love throughout your life. Enjoy your life; appreciate your life. Make your everyday one that counts for you.