Tag Archive | #Life Reimagined

“Heal the World” Michael Jackson

I feel it, my friends do too; stress. Unrelenting, daily stress in response to all the negative energy permeating our planet. Our world needs healing, and in the passionate pleas of Michael Jackson, “There are people dying if you care enough for the living make a better place for you and for me.” 

This song is a poignant reminder that we are a community of souls and are charged with taking care of one another. When people feel it’s okay to turn their back on pain and suffering, we lose our humanity. 

Where we live in the world should not matter. What our religion or creed is should not matter. And this fabrication of race, should surely not matter.

We all could use some major healing in the midst of the chaos and hate enveloping the country. People are hurting and afraid. We should be coming from a place of love, not hate and resentment.

Just like Michael said: “Heal the world, make it a better place, for you and for me and the entire human race”.

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Choose to be Inspired!

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This blog is all about a mind shift. Living life to the fullest by tapping into our talents, developing those gifts, and going after them with a determination for success.

Even if circumstances have been such to beat us down, tell us we’re failures or our lives are pointless, we still have to believe in ourselves, pursue enlightenment to advance our abilities and how we can contribute to society.

 

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I recall a talk I had years ago with my son. In this discussion, I asked him how do you want to use your talents, for the good of society or without thought simply throw them away? The choice is yours. Be conscious of your effect on the world and the legacy you want to leave.

These are the questions that lift us up to our highest potential and become a decisive factor in our happiness on this journey called life.

 

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Life Reimagined Series: The Six Practices of Purpose

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Finding our “Purpose” can feel like a daunting path to follow; intense in its undertaking. My “purpose” for tackling this course – Discover What’s Next: Living Your Life on Purpose is to reassess my life after the destiny-altering experience of being diagnosed with both colon and breast cancer simultaneously, dealing with the subsequent chemotherapy and radiation treatments, and ultimately emerging as a survivor.

 

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As a result of my cancer challenge and to further personal growth, I’m investigating the possibilities of what my life may hold and sharing this quest of introspection and discovery with you as I take classes and reflect on ways to live my life with purpose.

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I invite you to follow along with this Life Reimagined Series by regularly reading my blog. Perhaps together we can discover our passions and imagine the endless possibilities.

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“Discovering Your Path to Purpose”

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Once we’ve decided to find our Purpose, where do we begin? What are the next steps involved? In this lesson, the plan of action was laid out and assignment moving forward made clear. 

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1. Reflect

2. Connect

3. Explore

4. Choose

5. RePack

6. Act

 

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1. Reflect

Going through chemotherapy and radiation treatment I had a lot of time to reflect on my life and how I was living. I believe this introspection is essential to personal and spiritual growth.

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My diagnosis was an incredible opportunity to step back and appreciate all the love in my life and the importance of making each moment count. I’m traveling to Florence, Italy next May as a result of my resolution to go for my dreams; a destination I’ve wanted to experience for far too many years. There’s a quote from the play, Rent that sums it up best. “No Day But Today!”

 

2. Connect

There was a time before cancer that I was reticent to discuss my thoughts, fears, dreams with others. Not even family. I didn’t realize the importance of these connections and sincere desire my friends and family had to help me in any way they could. Don’t be like I was, make sure to connect with family and friends. They know you better than you think. Discuss your reflections with your bestie or whomever you feel would be a great sounding board.

3. Explore

Listen to where your heart is leading you and don’t be afraid to explore the possibilities. Read, go on the internet, research, and talk to people to open yourself up to opportunities you didn’t even know existed. As you feel more confident about sharing your “Purpose”, take a chance, you might just open up some new doors to what you’ve been searching for.

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Now, we’re not on an endless trip to discover our passions. That’s the old “I’ll get around to it” dodge too many of us make. Be sure to narrow down your options and pathways. But remember, you don’t have to stick to just one idea. Try on a couple to see what makes the better fit.

 

5. Repack

This step is crucial in the process. We must all decide what’s essential and what’s not for the next phase of our journey. It might be difficult but must be done. We have to let go of what’s not working and those who aren’t helping. Step into the fresh air. This is your life!

 

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6. Act

This is when the grand adventure starts. Taking that one small step forward on your path. 

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Where you begin is up to you.

 

Along my pathway of self-discovery I’ve benefited from applying “The Six Practices of Purpose.” Even before taking this course, my natural progression has led me to these principals. I’ve found it’s an excellent blueprint for revealing and strengthening my passion and “Purpose” which is: 

“To share my observations on living a joyful life by writing on faith and positive energy.”

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“Who Am I Meant to Be?” 9/11/2012

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FaceBook memories can be great because they take us back to a point in time, or a point of view we had at a particular moment in our lives. Today’s look back took me to a post from 4 years ago – September 11, 2012, reflections from my first blog.

I hadn’t thought of this post in a long while, but it reminds me that I’ve been on a self-discovery quest for many years. My featured series: Discover What’s Next – Living Your Life on Purpose, is a way of sharing my journey and hopefully in the process bringing others along for the ride.

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“Who Am I Meant to Be?”

First published on Blogger.com on 9/11/2012

Whenever I describe myself I usually use the phrase “A work in progress.”  Just when I think I’ve achieved that “ah ha” moment I reluctantly have to admit that “ah ha” what I know for sure is nothing.  If you’ve read my other 2 posts you’ll probably notice a reoccurring theme; attempting to figure out what the heck to do with this life and then how to go about achieving it. 

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It took me forever to write “Best of Times Worse of Times” because of over-analyzing the process.  I need to fully understand a concept before expressing my thoughts.  My background is traditional writing – newspapers, articles, even poetry.  But blogging?  That arena felt foreign and therefore uncomfortable in my mind.  Finally, I just had to do what I did in junior high to learn how to swim. Jump into the deep end and let the struggle for survival take over.  It worked!  I guess that’s just how to approach blogging.  Jump in and have faith in my skills and my ability to pull it off. 

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Okay, this might sound like it’s “off point”, but when I lived in Minneapolis, I worked for a marketing firm and reps from various magazines would often leave complimentary copies.  On one particular occasion, the rep from Oprah magazine asked if I’d like a copy and because my mother raised me right I accepted with a “thank you.”  I’m a firm believer in cosmic energy and karma and believe this particular edition of Oprah came to me as a vision quest for my life.  On the cover of the magazine in bold, 48 point font was the title “Who Are You Meant to Be?”  Well, I don’t think the Universe needed to scream much louder because I had to check it out to see if Oprah actually had a clue as to who I’m meant to be.

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This edition included a quiz based on personality science.  It identifies seven “Striving Styles,” modes of thought and behavior that direct us to seek satisfaction in different ways.  The article went on to explain that although everybody is wired with all seven styles, most people have one that dominates.  The payoff for taking the quiz is to discover your striving style and use that style for the best shot at fulfilling your potential.  Now I’m definitely in!

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I won’t go into all the questions but the Seven Styles are: Striving to Help, Striving to Be Recognized, Striving to Be Creative, Striving to Be Spontaneous, Striving to Be Knowledgeable, Striving to Be Secure and Striving to Be in Control.  I was sure my personality would play out as Striving to Be Creative or Spontaneous but it blew me away when my score added up to Striving to Be Knowledgeable – You are an Intellectual.  I’ve never considered myself to be an intellectual.  My husband’s the intellectual in the family for Pete’s sake!  But, as I continued to read their definition, intellectual means being incisive and curious; driven to understand how things work.

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I read that article over 2 years ago and the irony is I’m still trying to figure out who I’m meant to be.  My life has taken several twists and turns since that day I pondered my place in the world.  Truth be told, who we are isn’t set in stone.  We are perpetual “Striving Styles” because our lives aren’t linear.  We are constantly adjusting our style to meet the hopes, dreams, and challenges we face along our paths.

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 “Ah ha”! – I do strive to help, be recognized, be creative and spontaneous. And “Ah ha”! – I also strive to be knowledgeable, secure and in control.   Who am I meant to be?  The book is still out on that one.

Love this post! And yes, I’m still a work in progress!

Choose to be Inspired!

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This blog is all about a mind shift. Living life to the fullest by tapping into our talents, developing those gifts, and going after them with a determination for success.

The series I’ve been presenting, Discover What’s Next: Living Life on Purpose, is all about self-discovery and purpose. Even though the circumstances may have been such to beat us down, tell us we’re failures or our lives are pointless, we still have to believe in ourselves, pursue enlightenment to advance our abilities and how we can contribute to society.

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I recall a talk I had years ago with my son. In this discussion, I asked him how do you want to use your talents, for the good of society or without thought simply throw them away? The choice is yours. Be conscious of your effect on the world and the legacy you want to leave.

These are the questions that lift us up to our highest potential and become a decisive factor in our happiness on this journey called life.

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I came across this video on YouTube and it resonated with me. Give a listen and then ask yourself how you choose to live. How you choose to be inspired.

 

 

Life Reimagined Series: What Now? Part II

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Welcome to Part 2 of Life Reimagined: What Now? 

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In this Lesson: Trigger Moments (periods of uncertainty), we’re checking in on our mindfulness practices. Trigger Moments are those events (good or bad) that come along when our lives are on a plateau (a state of little or no change) and knocks us into limbo (an uncertain period of awaiting a decision or resolution). It’s in these moments that lessons are learned. These are the opportunities to reflect on how we engage in the world around us.

Evaluation is a big part of this series. Exploring the concept of introspection as it applies to your daily life. My goal for this blog and sharing this course, Discover What’s Next: Living Life on Purpose, is to serve as a conduit to begin the journey. Sharing my beliefs in faith and positive energy is a daily goal of my Purpose, which is to bring others along on the road to self-discovery.

 

Third Trigger Moment

 After Cancer Treatment. What Now?

With my decision to choose Mindfulness in my cancer treatment and not assuming what that would entail, I had an incredible and empowering experience. Because being Mindfull means living in the moment, I didn’t think into the future about what would happen after treatment ended. I wanted to live each and every moment as if it were my last because I understood tomorrow is not promised.

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Now that I’m a survivor and my life is settling back into a non-treatment day to day routine, I continue my efforts into self-discovery that I started before the colon and breast cancer diagnosis. Hence this course, Discover What’s Next: Living Life on PurposeThrough this work, I further understand my Purpose is to share my testimony of faith by authoring this blog and reaching out to others.

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Reflecting back on those early decisions on how to approach life, I guess I’ve always had a risk-taking personality and a belief system to take on doubt and fear and go for it. 

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In Part 1 of this Lesson, I described my first Trigger Moment, being cast in the theater production of “Bye, Bye Birdie” scenario. In that Trigger Moment, I made the choice to turn uncertainty on its ear by bringing my own accompanist to the audition to increase my odds of an exceptional performance and getting the part.

In the second Trigger Moment, I described the move from Chicago to Minneapolis example, in which I pushed my relocation assumptions aside by deciding to reach out to the acting community to negotiate my way back into an acting career in community theater. Letting go of assumption taught me I’m capable of anything if I really want it and there is no obstacle that can stand in my way. Those experiences brought growth and faith in the possibilities.

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I continually discover that all things are possible when living a Mindful life. I cherish every moment by moment so that when my physical existence in this world is over, I can say – I didn’t just live, I was alive!

Life Reimagined Series: What Now?

As you follow this series, hopefully, you’re starting to explore the concept of introspection as it applies to your daily life by using this blog and the course Discover What’s Next: Living Life on Purpose as a starting point. Sharing my personal development with the blogging community is an effort I take seriously and honestly because my revelation led to my Purpose, which is to bring others along on the road to self-discovery.

The overarching theme of this project is to focus on our humanity; being reflective and motivated by our Purpose. The force that energizes us to greet the day guided by our goals. Even if this is your first time joining us, don’t worry, feel free to jump in and start to assess where you are on your life’s journey.

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In this Lesson: Trigger Moments (periods of uncertainty), we’re checking in on our mindfulness practices. Trigger Moments are those events (good or bad) that come along when our lives are on a plateau (a state of little or no change) and knocks us into limbo (an uncertain period of awaiting a decision or resolution). It’s in these moments that lessons are learned. These are the opportunities to reflect on how we engage in the world around us.

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My assignment was to reflect on 3 Trigger Moments in my life and what got me through. What were my practices? 

Part One

I had to walk around and really think about those moments. The first to come to mind was being diagnosed with Cancer but I thought I’ve discussed my reactions in previous posts plus, I wanted to dig deeper. Not just immediate moments but taking an assessment of my life as a whole.

These are 2 of my 3 Trigger Moments. I’ll share my 3rd in Part 2 of What Now?

 

1. Acting role in “Bye, Bye Birdie”.

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This moment takes me way back to the 80’s. I’ve written about the movie “Fame” on my blog iheartfilmblog.com and how it changed my life by reminding me that I love performing and expressing myself creatively is at the core of who I am. Being a wife and mom shouldn’t be an excuse for not realizing my dreams.

So, after a small role in my park district’s theater production of “Pal Joey”, it felt like the acting God’s were calling my name when an opportunity presented itself to audition for a role in one of my favorite shows, “Bye, Bye, Birdie” at Music on Stage, a major and long respected community theater group in the Chicago area.

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I worked through the anxiety of auditioning with a levelheaded approach. Even though I wasn’t a girl scout, I did understanding the importance of being prepared.

So, I devised a plan enlisting the support of the music director at my children’s school to be my accompanist, as a song was required for the audition. I didn’t want to chance an unknown pianist messing with my nerves or screwing up my arrangement. When my name was called, I felt confident and proceeded to belt out a number from the show, “A Lot of Livin’ to Do”.

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Impressing the director, I was hired for a specialty role and took on the challenge of learning to tap dance. I had the time of my life performing the “Ed Sullivan” song and wowing with my tap dance routine in tandem with the main character, Albert in “Put on a Happy Face”.

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2. Transfer move from Chicago to Minneapolis.

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My Number 2 moment is directly influenced by the events of Number 1. After my performance in “Bye, Bye Birdie”, seems like I was either in a show, auditioning for a show, or rehearsing for a show. My acting career really took off and by the time my husband was transferred from his position in Chicago to Minneapolis, I had built up a body a work so that directors were calling me for specific roles in shows they were casting.

Suffice it to say, I was not happy with the announcement of the relocation and found myself crying like a baby driving down Michigan Ave. lamenting what this move was going to mean to my accomplishments in Chicago. Even though my husband kept reassuring me that Minneapolis had theater as well, in my head I kept thinking – “but it’s not Chicago!”.

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After the initial poor me “pity party”, I decided to use my resourcefulness and experience to sign-up for an acting class to get in with the local acting community and learn about upcoming auditions. My networking paid off as I ended up scoring one of the best and most memorable roles of my community theater life – starring in the Neil Simon play “Proposals”.

I had made the move work for me by shifting my mindset and choosing a positive attitude. Because of accepting the circumstances instead of fighting it, I was able to recreate myself in a new city and take my passion of acting to a whole other level.

        

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I’ve discovered all things are possible when we live a Mindful life. I believe in cherishing every moment by moment so that when my physical existence in this world is over, I can say – I didn’t just live, I was alive!

 

 

 

 

 

Life Reimagined: Up for the Ride?

Journeys

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In this lesson of Discover What’s Next: Living Life on Purpose, I was asked to describe my personal life spiral of plateaus, triggers, limbo, and new plateaus. How has my journey shaped who I am and where I am right now?

 

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Wow, that’s a lot of digging into my eternal self, but I’m up for the effort.

I first started blogging back in 2009 when my husband was laid off from his position of 20 years as a result of the “downturn” and thus, our lives became redefined. I figured what the heck, let’s make lemonade so I began planning the adventure to relocate and start all over again. I viewed the job loss as a sign for change.

 

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I decided if I was going to embrace this gear change and be honest with the world, I’d blog about this process not only for myself but for others who might be going through some of the same upheavals. It felt cathartic putting my life out there for others to consume. I further discovered that people were reading about my trials and expressed respect for my honesty.

Don’t get me wrong, moving to a new state and starting over continues to be a challenge of identity and faith in one’s self, but I don’t regret the opportunity to stretch and find out what I’m made of.

 

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Just when it seemed life was settling down, I was diagnosed with both Colon and Breast Cancer last year and another log was thrown on the fire. I decided straight off that I was not going to assume the outcome but travel with faith and believe that I could meet this challenge with the support of God, family, and friends. 

The medical care I have received and continue to benefit from is amazing! I truly believe God sent me to Charlotte because he knew these trials were ahead and wanted to make sure I could avail myself of the best treatment possible.

 

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Livinginthemoment2015 is a result of my desire to chronicle my experience so my family and friends would know how I was doing on a regular basis. I’ve said this before and continue to believe that facing my mortality happened because God loves me so much he wanted me to grow into a stronger, more spiritual person. It worked! I’ve had the time of my life and met some incredible people so I don’t see my diagnosis as a negative, but rather a remarkable chapter in my life’s story. I quoted this in my previous post but it bears repeating:

 

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I’m exclamation pointing it all the way as I evolve in my pursuit of continued enlightenment. So much happier than ever because of this glimpse of the other side. With boundless energy and curiosity, I’m determined to make the most of my life because tomorrow is certainly not promised.

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I invite you to join me on the road to discovery with the online course: Discover What’s Next: Living Life on Purpose.

 

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Life Reimagined – Purpose Checkup🙄

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Being a colon and breast cancer survivor I’ve had to embrace my faith and continued belief that anything is possible like never before. Coming face to face with the reality that tomorrow is not promised and as a part of my personal growth, I’m diving headlong into the investigation of the possibilities of what my life may hold.

Life Reimagined is a resource that I discovered last year and have used as an impetus into the further understanding of myself. As stated in my previous post, I’ve also decided to share this journey of introspection and discovery as I take more classes and reflect on ways to live my life on purpose.

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This is the 2nd lesson in the course, Discover What’s Next: Living Life on Purpose and focuses on being reflective and motivated by Purpose. Richard Lieder (creator of course) interviewed seniors (65 years plus) for this teaching moment in the class and asked their thoughts on the 3 things they would change about their lives. The response was enlightening.

•Take more chances

•Be more reflective

•Understand Purpose earlier

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By taking on this challenge and actively seeking greater insight into what drives and motivates, we are understanding our Purpose earlier which gives us the ability to use that knowledge toward living a more rewarding experience.

The Lesson Activity – “Purpose Checkup”

The Purpose Checkup is a series of probing questions to make you think about your involvement in your community, life/work balance, and optimism. My Purpose Score was 77 (my competitive side kicked in, so not making 100 made me shutter:) but, that just gives me a goal to work on.😊

The overall statement read:

“You are living purposefully! You’re clear about what truly matters to you and you’re mattering in the world. To help keep purpose a key focus of your life, keep going with the course.”

“Home is knowing. Knowing your mind, heart, courage. If we know ourselves, we’re always home, anywhere.”

I’m not sure why now, but, for whatever reason, the summary rang true. It might seem odd but I felt emotional as I read the review of my score. I felt a sense of validation and that reaction really hit me. I was blessed with the ability to write and thereby share my belief in the possibilities, my strength of faith, and seeing the beauty in life. Suddenly, I felt like Dorothy in the “Wizard of Oz” when Glenda tells her she had the power all along, she just had to go thru these trials to realize that truth.  Maybe like Dorothy it was just my time. Perhaps this is the plan my friend predicted God had for me. 

Reflecting further I concluded my emotions were about feeling good, spiritual in knowing my life has to mean sharing my spirit with others is what God put me here to do.

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Once you understand your Purpose, what does that Realization actually mean? Ask yourself the following question: 

“What Would I like to be Remembered For?”

My Realization is: I want to be remembered for bringing light, joy, and faith into the lives of others. This gives me a mission and clarity as I interact in day to day relationships. A check-in for myself as to how I’m living and is it with purpose.

I invite you to join in this journey of discovery by taking an online class through the Life Reimagined Institute. Maybe together we can discover our Purpose and the endless possibilities.

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Follow the link below to begin the journey of living your life on purpose:

https://www.thebigknow.com/course/discover-purpose/session/lr-purpose?utm_source=lr&utm_medium=email&utm_term=&utm_content=purpose&utm_campaign=general&cmp=EMC-LR-ECP-20160503-NE

Life Reimagined – Lesson 1🗓 “The 2 most important days of your life.”

I consider myself to be a lifelong learner and as a part of my personal growth, I’m continuing my investigation into the possibilities of what my life may hold. As stated in my previous post, I’ve also decided to share this journey of introspection and discovery as I take classes and reflect on ways to live my life on purpose.

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As a means of further self-examination, I’ve started the online course Discover What’s Next: Living Your Life on Purpose created by Richard Lieder and the Life Reimagined Institute; using their exercises as a spiritual and educational tool. This post is the first lesson in the series designed to aid in my exploration of living a purposeful life.

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Lesson 1 was a video with Richard Lieder that posed the question: “What are the 2 most important days of your life?”

I immediately felt the urge to wildly raise my hand like the character Arnold Horshack on the 70’s tv show “Welcome Back Kotter” and shout, ooh, ooh! I know the answer, which I did because of my ongoing interest in the subject matter. 

The answer is – The day you’re born and the day you find out why.

This is where we begin the quest for finding our Purpose. The questioning of what we contribute to society and how this “Purpose” drives us to get up in the morning.

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Even though the video was only about a minute and a half, I spent the rest of the afternoon and I’m sure the next few days, reflecting on my thoughts of what I add to my community and what motivates me to rise every morning with a smile on my face.

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It’s hard these days to avoid the hate filled rhetoric on television and in online articles. When I see this I wonder how people can live and wake up each morning consumed by such hatred. In terms of Purpose, what do this behavior and attitude contribute to society and are these feelings the motivating factor for getting them up in the morning?

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Are they even aware of the debilitating effects of this pattern of behavior? Do they ponder what they add to their community or do they even care? This is why I believe introspection is so important. Maybe if we stop and think about our outlook on life, we can see ourselves as solutions instead of part of the problem.

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Being a cancer survivor, I understand the power of positive thought. I thank God every morning for another day of life because I’ve come face to face with the truth that tomorrow is not promised. Giving testimony of my miracle by authoring this blog, my intent is to give encouragement and hope for others fighting for their lives. At my Birthday/Chemo Over Party, a good friend of mine told me “God has great plans for you.” I’m not sure what those plans are, but I’m definitely open to receiving them.

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I invite you to join in this journey of discovery by taking an online class through the Life Reimagined Institute. Maybe together we can discover our Purpose and the endless possibilities.

In Discover What’s Next: Living Your Life on Purpose, you’ll travel with Richard Leider, renowned life coach, best-selling author, and thought-leader at Life Reimagined, in exploring how your gifts, passions, and values can guide you toward a greater sense of purpose and bring more joy to your years.

Follow the link below to begin the journey of living your life on purpose:

https://www.thebigknow.com/course/discover-purpose/session/lr-purpose?utm_source=lr&utm_medium=email&utm_term=&utm_content=purpose&utm_campaign=general&cmp=EMC-LR-ECP-20160503-NE