Tips and ideas for living an authentic life

Once upon a time there was a person, we’ll call her Betty, who loved new experiences and the excitement of being surprised and touched by life. Betty was busy one morning, deciding what to do that day. She had made a list of possible things to do that had come to mind. Some of them seemed urgent or at least necessary because others were depending on her, and some seemed like something really great could happen if she could just find the time to get to them.

As she looked over her list, she began to wonder how she could balance her life in order to take care of both herself and her relationships with others in the best way possible. So, with that in mind Betty created a to do list and when finished, looked it over for good balance between her own personal interests and doing things for the benefit of others.

A quick glance seemed to suggest that there was a lot on there for the benefit of others and not so much that held the possibility of surprise and being touched by life, for her. After a moment or two, she said to herself, “wow, this list could use some work. The only thing balanced here is how I divide my time between others who need something from me. I’m barely in the picture. How can I make this plan a little more me friendly?”

Then, Betty remembered that she was a 10,000 Year Thinker. She also remembered that in 10,000 Year Thinking, the intention is not about balance at all, it’s sequence. The reason is because balance is strictly an Organizing Mind or logical concept. Since 10,000 Year Thinkers aren’t guided by balancing logical concepts, she let go of the idea of trying to achieve balance.

Instead, she began looking for creative sequence in her day – what comes first and what comes second. And, she knew that what comes first is the awareness of what resonates with her or just feels right, that ever-present connection with her own creative energy. And what comes second is coming up with ways to engage in what came first.

So, Betty put her to do list aside and got another piece of paper and wrote down a bunch of things that really resonated with her – things like art, theater, musicians and hanging out with those kinds of creative people. Then she started to think about how she could engage in those things today. She also considered resonant goals that she had been engaged in and, what were the possible next steps in the unfolding of the adventures that those previous goals represented.

One of her questions became, are those things that seem urgent or necessary, naturally growing out of one of my resonant areas for engagement. Or, have they lost that connection, and so have me going down some rabbit trail that is just taking me in circles. Or, in her words, “are those urgent or necessary things part of the game that I want to play?”

As she continued, she began to see her day, not as doing some things for herself and some things for others, but as a day filled with the unfolding of her unique journey as guided by her own resonant energy. She grew more excited as she began to pick up the personally creative threads that guided everything she was going to do that day.

Those urgent and necessary things seemed to lose their serious and controlling feeling. Instead, those that stayed on her list, gained a new feeling of intensity and excitement and opportunity to engage in the challenge of her own creative journey.

Her new to do list was no longer an effort to balance logical concepts, but was now a continuation of the unique unfolding of her natural path, a path that was guided by things that resonated with her – not by an effort to achieve some kind of conceptual balance. In fact, she knew that engaging fully in some of her adventures would at times, probably stretch her beyond any semblance of balance. Half terrified and half excited, she was open to discovering that unknown aspect of herself.

Instead of trying to fit her day into categories, she was simply discovering what was next in the unfolding of the life that resonated with her. She experienced that, both as she created her to do list and as she took action in those things to do.

As she engaged in her day, her time spent meeting with a challenging co-worker became a mission in finding relevance with that person in the service of both of their journeys and personally, as part of her engagement in the art world that felt so right to her. Scheduling time in order to take her kids to and from activities was precious and challenging as part of her engagement in the family experience that resonated so dearly with her. Much more happened that day, and for her, the exhaustion she felt at the end of the day wasn’t a sign of a tiring life but the sign of a fully engaged life.

Betty ended up having a day filled with challenges, connection and satisfaction – and a day that included some surprises and moments where she was touched by life. Although she had both successes and disappointments that day, she felt confident and fulfilled knowing that each day she was playing the game she wanted to play – winning, losing and sometimes a draw. Just before she fell asleep that night, she wondered about others and whether they were living lives that surprised and touched them in the natural unfolding of their days.

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