Explore the interconnectedness of the heart and mind

Explore the interconnectedness of the heart and mind. It is between the two that we discover wisdom, peace, and purpose.

—Calm App Reflection

Image from Unsplash by Giulia Bertelli

Since Covid, we have traveled considerably less than in previous years. We’ve continued to schedule trips, only to cancel many for a variety of reasons.

Staying close to home used to be very frustrating. These days, we realize checking certain destinations off our bucket lists is far less of a priority.

Exploring what it means to be modern elders and investigate more matters of the heart has enriched us in many ways we never expected.

EXERCISE:

How much time do you take these days to explore the interconnectedness of your heart and mind?

What does this special connection have to teach you about leading an even more meaningful life?

“You should have something to show for each day you were lucky enough to live.”

“You should have something to show for each day you were lucky enough to live.”

Ryan Holiday, American marketer, podcaster, Stoic philosopher

Image from Unsplash by Guille Álvarez

I hope you had a wonderful holiday season and that the new year is off to a great start!

Beyond the gifts you received—and perhaps a few extra pounds—what else do you have to show for these days?

How lucky and grateful do you feel each day you roll, step, or leap out of bed?

In the year ahead, how will you bring greater intention and purpose to your days to contribute even more within your various communities?

EXERCISE:

Consider setting up a show-and tell time with family and friends.

How can your individual and collective efforts help everyone to feel even luckier to be alive?

Take your own yellow brick road

Take your own yellow brick road and meet your own inner wizard.

—Calm App Reflection

Image from Unsplash by freddie marriage

I can vividly remember watching The Wizard of Oz as a child. Year after year we viewed the same story and were always left with an uplifted and heartwarming feeling.

As an adult, the story has become even more relevant. Using our heads, hearts, and courage to pursue our passions and purpose makes life even more wonderful.

EXERCISE:

How and in what ways are you following your own yellow brick road? In what ways are you already the wise wizard to guide you along this path?

How are you living a purposeful life? Playing a supporting role to serve and love others is more than enough.

How are you living a purposeful life? Playing a supporting role to serve and love others is more than enough.

—Calm App Reflection

Image from Unsplash by wocintechchat.com

Without question, living a purposeful life is a high priority for most people.

We all want our lives to matter and contribute in some meaningful way. In our efforts to do so, we often look around at others for examples of making a dent in the universe. Popular media of all types offer examples that for many of us are out of reach—winning gold medals, a Nobel Prize, and solving the world’s most challenging problems are not the only way to leave a legacy.

Today’s quote has us appreciate the everyday acts of service and love we offer our families and communities as being more than enough.

EXERCISE:

Where and how are you playing an important supporting role in the lives of others?

How can you more fully acknowledge your daily acts of love and service as a source of great meaning and purpose?

“In the game of life, there’s no high score list, but you never want to languish on level one.”

“In the game of life, there’s no high score list, but you never want to languish on level one.”

Jay Shetty, life coach and former Hindu monk

Image from Unsplash by Erik Mclean

I’ve never been a big fan of video games. Except for space invaders and PAC Man many years ago, I never seemed to get the rush of leveling up in the multitude of games and systems that came after.

I have, however, always been interested in the game of life and the pursuit of growth and achievement. Tackling some worthy objective that filled my desire to learn and feel purposeful always had me want to take the next steps in my capabilities and impact.

EXERCISE:

Where do you have a keen desire to level up and build on your current abilities?

How can you measure your progress in these areas with your own inner scoreboard?

“If you have a pulse, you have a purpose.”

“If you have a pulse, you have a purpose.”

—Richard Leider, Faculty member of the Modern Elder Academy

Image from Unsplash by Mockup Graphics

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Am I doing what I love to do?
  • Is what I do helpful to others?
  • Does it energize me or drain me?

Consider modifying these closed questions to open ended questions such as….

  • How often do I get to do what I love?
  • How are my efforts helpful to others?
  • How energized and alive do I feel when engaged in these activities?

EXERCISE:

What are some ways you can and will increase your heart rate to live an even more inspired and purposeful life?

If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favorable

“If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favorable.”

—Seneca, ancient Roman philosopher & statesman

Image from Unsplash by Christian Wiediger

What things in life get you excited and stir your passions? What activities and efforts really float your boat?  How fast and how far have these winds taken you personally and professionally?

Sometimes people find themselves adrift in the middle of nowhere without direction. They often feel lost at sea with a sense of queasiness and loneliness without a place to drop anchor. It’s at such times that our passions can be combined with the purpose of a north star to guide us home.

EXERCISE:

Where and how can you more fully combine both passion and purpose in your life to sail confidently and contently into the welcoming harbors of your world?

“The proper work of the mind is the exercise of choice, refusal, yearnings, repulsion, preparation, purpose, and assent.”

“The proper work of the mind is the exercise of choice, refusal, yearnings, repulsion, preparation, purpose, and assent.”

—Epictetus, Discourses

Image from Unsplash by Robina Weermeijer

In today’s quote, Epictetus suggests there are seven clear functions of the mind.

Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman break each of them down in the following manner in their book, The Daily Stoic:

Choice: to do and think right
Refusal: of temptation
Yearning: to be better
Repulsion: of negativity, of bad influences, and what isn’t true
Preparation: for what lies ahead or whatever might happen
Purpose: our guiding principles and highest priorities
Assent: to be free of deception about what is inside and outside our control (and be ready to accept the latter)

EXERCISE:

Consider printing this post out to work on and think through one of these functions of the mind each day. This exercise could be a crash course in Stoicism in itself.

“Why do you get up in the morning?”

“Why do you get up in the morning?”

—Dan Buettner, New York Times-bestselling author

Image from Unsplash by Somnox Sleep

I like to start each day as purposefully as possible to learn and grow, to express gratitude and especially to find ways to serve others.

Writing The Quotable Coach post most mornings over the last nine years is one important expression that meets all of the criteria. Today I am getting up a bit early to go shopping for food for us and a close friend.

What are some of the important reasons you get up each morning? What goals and intentions empower and energize you, make your day special for yourself and others? How will spending your day this way put a smile of satisfaction on your face when you lie down to sleep tonight?

EXERCISE:

Consider exploring the 2200 Quotable Coach posts that are sorted by categories. Please consider sharing this resource with others whom you wish to support and serve in the coming year.

Thank You!

“Follow your heart. Purpose will reveal itself to you only while walking your own path.”

“Follow your heart. Purpose will reveal itself to you only while walking your own path.”

—Brendon Burchard, New York Times best-selling author

Image from Unsplash by Lucas George Wendt

These days, many people are feeling a bit lost.

The proverbial bread crumbs they placed along their life paths have been blown, washed, or burned away by the events and challenges facing us all.

Taking time to look around at reality—and within our hearts—to revisit or discover our foundational values and core life principles is a good place to start.

Doing so will likely reveal various paths you can take and what direction to head. In these moments, it can be enough to step forward in ways that express these values.

Trust your heart that purpose and meaning will meet you on the way.

EXERCISE:

Consider completing the Life Vision Exercise to see what your heart has to say, and pack a few snacks for your purposeful journey.