12. Seek your greatness.
“…[A] mentor of mine suggested that each of us carries greatness in some way. So seek your greatness. And trust that, even if you do not discover it all at once, it is there. And if you continue to work toward your greatness, you will fulfill and achieve it. This is another great joy of life.” ~ John Duffy, Ph.D.
13. Live your values.
“Name your three highest values and then see how closely you are actually living those values. For example, if you really value community yet find yourself feeling lonely or disconnected, the gap between your value and how you’re living it is pretty wide. What are some ways you can close that gap to live more closely by your values? As Russ Harris suggests: Picture yourself at your 90th birthday party. What do you want people to say about you? What do you regret? What do you wish you had done more of?” ~ Bobbi Emel, MFT.
14. Explore your personal well-being.
“…[W]ell-being is an art form. In order to find well-being and maintain it, you’ll need to understand your own genetic tendencies and how your life story shapes who you are. This biology and biography will be unique to you and only you. Well-being also invites you to embrace holistic as well as traditional ways of living. And once you find what works uniquely for you, safeguard it, feel empowered by it and celebrate it.” ~ Deborah Serani, PsyD.
15. Cultivate calm in your heart.
“The best advice I can offer is captured in the following tale:
There once was a king who offered a prize to the artist who would paint the best picture of peace. Many artists tried. The king looked at all the pictures, but there were only two he really liked and he had to choose between them.
One picture was of a calm lake. The lake was a perfect mirror, for peaceful towering mountains were all around it. Overhead was a blue sky with fluffy white clouds. All who saw this picture thought that it was a perfect picture of peace.
The other picture had mountains too. But these were rugged and bare. Above was an angry sky from which rain fell and in which lightning played. Down the side of the mountain tumbled a foaming waterfall. This did not look peaceful at all. But when the king looked, he saw behind the waterfall a tiny bush growing in a crack in the rock. In the bush a mother bird had built her nest. There, in the midst of the rush of angry water, sat the mother bird on her nest, perfectly at peace.
Which picture do you think won the prize?
The king chose the second picture. ‘Because,’ explained the king, ‘peace does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. Peace means to be in the midst of all those things and still be calm in your heart. That is the real meaning of peace.'” ~ Aaron Karmin, LCPC.
16. Find your own answer.
“I think each person has to answer it as an individual. Some people find meaning in giving incredible service to others. Some find it in developing an amazing talent and sharing it. Others find it in becoming parents and raising children who are good citizens. For me a meaningful life involves finding my most authentic self and then spending time with people who validate it. It includes some kind of service to my fellow beings and a belief system that acknowledges a collective power greater than our individual selves.” ~ Ellen Toronto, Ph.D.
A meaningful life is different for each of us. The key is to look within — and to keep looking within on a daily basis — to discover just what meaningful means. And then the other part, of course, is to live that by incorporating that meaning, those values, into our everyday lives.