Towards More Life

There are few clearer life missions than this, “I have come that they might have life… and have it more abundantly.”  How can we have a life that is more abundant?  Does this mean there are different levels, degrees, or qualities to life?

I think most of us agree that there are different qualities of life – the News is full of evidence.  As for abundance, I only have to travel down the lane to the main road.  Hedges that were stripped naked in the cold reality of Winter are now, in Summer, pressing in on the carriageway, pushing and shoving their way up and out to get a bigger share of the sunshine.

So how can you and I have a more abundant life today?

My recipe is as clear as the mission statement we began with.  It has seven ingredients that I’ve mentioned in other blogs – so today’s focus is on taking action.  Here are the seven ingredients:

  • Movement
  • Nutrition
  • Reproduction
  • Excretion
  • Growth
  • Respiration
  • Sensitivity

Movement in Action

Today, move more!  Challenge that voice that says, “You’re too busy to go for a walk…” or, “You’re too busy to go down the gym!”  Movement is one of the first ‘liberations’ we feel as children.  It’s power is felt when people pass their driving test.  Movement is a sign of life.  And, if you have less mobility, for any reason, at the moment, mental movement can be equally as liberating.  This is “movement towards” something.  Think of something/someone/some attitude you desire more of in your life, then take action to move you towards more of this/them!

I promise you: you’ll feel more alive for it.

Nutrition in Action

Not only is nutrition vital for life, but it seems it is also vital for the well-being of relationships.  Church friends say, “The Couple that prays together, stays together,” but I say to you, “Families that dine together, do just fine together!”  There are three alternative actions you could take today or weave all together:

  • Allow yourself a Nutritional treat – a meal out, that naughty cake, something special for lunch or supper…
  • Find an excuse to take a friend out for a meal… even a cup-of-tea together works wonders…
  • Make a small change in your nutritional intake – maybe a ‘better’ food choice, or an increased intake of water.

I promise you: you’ll feel more alive for it.

Reproduction in Action

It’s too tempting to think we’re talking about “50 Shades of Grey” type activity here – but that’s not ‘Reproduction’.  Reproduction is taking something that represents you – ideally the best of you – and combines it with something that represents or is the best of someone else.

Action today may be as simple and pleasant as bouncing some ideas off a good friend or colleague.  If the sum of the parts is greater, the result is sound!  If you’ve got no opportunity to spark off someone else today (come on, that’s what Facebook and LinkedIn are for!) you can feel more alive by creating something new from an unusual association of inputs.

This is at the heart of Edward de Bono’s approach to creativity – the idea of random clashes of association that lead to insight.  So mixing ‘television’ with ‘cheese’ as concepts, he provoked the original idea of picture-in-picture television.  David Bowie is supposed to have created some of his lyrics by randomly combining words.  Reach for the dictionary, open it to two places in turn, and put down your finger.  I got: “roll” as in the verb, and “fend” as in “fend-off”… this provoked the thought of a security shutter that rolls up… but that’s already be reproduced as an idea.  Then I thought of a party favour that rolls out like a tongue… and I thought this would be a fun way to fend off would-be attackers… it would certainly take them by surprise!  Perhaps we could design a self-defence device that looks like a sealed steel-rule but springs out and bashes baddies?  I think you get my point.  Go, create something new, fresh, and innovative!

I promise you: you’ll feel more alive for it.

Excretion in Action.

Great!  Where do we go with this one?  Actually it’s easy to feel more alive and released though this concept.  Chose something to get rid of today!  Ideally it will be something that someone else would benefit from, so you could eBay it or give it to a charity shop.  Some readers will think of someone to get rid of today!  I’m not advocating anything sinister here, merely a change of the Cast of your Life’s Drama.

I promise you: you’ll feel more alive for it.

Growth in Action

Like the many thousands of other people, I have benefited from Stephen Covey’s ideas on “sharpening the saw” – of committing to personal or professional development each week to give you more of an edge.  I loved his comment, “have you ever been too much of in a hurry to stop for gas?”

I get a buzz out of positive growth.  For me, it’s reading or listening to some self-development insights from a business or psychological guru.  It is also in literally growing things – our first crop of potatoes was a good day.

Plant a seed today, or sharpen your psychological or intellectual saw today – I promise you… well, you know what I’m going to say!

Respiration in Action

Respiration is a form of symbiosis, of win-win, of give-and-take, of fair-exchange.  Organisations will often find a way to give back to their communities.  Individuals will often give of their time in exchange for the satisfaction that comes from helping another person or cause.  A sense of giving-and-receiving is vital to the abundant life.  It needs to be both give-and-receive – a trade.

Trade something today – time – money – compliments!

I promise you: you’ll feel more alive for it!

Sensitivity in Action

Did you know, you cannot listen effectively while you are talking?  Did you know, you cannot enjoy your life-to-the-full today if you’re focusing on the past or the future?

Simple actions then.

  • Be quiet, and listen more to others today to increase your sensitivity to what they need, feel, or think;
  • Be in the “Now”.  Become more aware of what you can see around right at this moment, in this place.  What can you hear that you didn’t notice a moment ago?  How do you feel, right here, right now?  What can you smell?  What can you taste?

Sensitivity is about being aware of your senses in the present tense.  Sometimes it takes mindfulness to just stop and become more aware, right here, right now.

And you know what?  If you make a habit of this sense-of-awareness, you feel more alive for it, I promise you!

2 thoughts on “Towards More Life

  1. I’m sure I’ve read something similar to that. It sounds familiar anyway. Sorry if it sounds ‘bitchy’ (for want of a better word) but you know me… I don’t butter the toast before its toasted!

  2. Yes, it’s very similar to another of my posts… it was the output of thoughts in the shower this morning, thinking, I need a reminder. If you’re doing all that’s in the post – you, unlike me, don’t need a reminder!!

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