When you get older and reflect on your life, will you value the things that you checked off your to-do list or will you take pride in knowing that you enjoyed a life well lived? In other words, shouldn’t who you want to be take precedence over what you want to pursue? What could be more important?
Do you want to do more or be more?
Forget Your To-Do List and Create a To-Be List
By determining who you want to be rather than what you want to accomplish, you’ll be able to identify your possibilities, weigh your options, define your aspirations, establish your goals, and measure daily progress against your desires. Moreover, it’ll help you know if you’re proceeding on track or veering off course. Here are 11 aspirations worthy of your consideration.
Do you want to be a:
- Loving spouse
- Dedicated parent
- Trusted friend
- Proud citizen
- Valuable worker
- Selfless leader
- Positive role model
- Thoughtful neighbor
- Caring family member
- Faithful follower — of the Almighty
- Happy and fulfilled individual
You may be thinking, “I want to be all these things.” But what happens when you have to choose between them? For example, you may be forced to choose between going home to your family or staying late at work — yet again; defending your principles or following the crowd; doing something for yourself or for your kids; calling out a colleague or looking the other way. The upshot is that your actions say volumes about your priorities, as well as about yourself.
Who Do You Want to Be?
While it may not be hard to define who you want to be, that doesn’t guarantee that your wishes will come true. While being a dedicated parent, a trusted friend, and a thoughtful neighbor are all admirable goals, they’re unlikely to occur by magic. Good intentions are not enough. You have to consciously make them happen.
When you do nothing, nothing happens.
In addition, we get so caught up in daily activities that it’s easy to lose sight of the big picture. That happens because day-to-day deadlines loom large, whereas nobody’s pressuring you to step back and put things in perspective.
What does it mean to be a trusted friend, to raise good kids, be a thoughtful neighbor or an exemplary role model? If you don’t take the time to define the personal qualities and actions required to achieve these ends, it’s likely you never will. How can you achieve your aspirations?
Be the Author of Your Life Story
As you contemplate your aspirations in life, consider the following:
Make yourself proud. Be a person of strong moral character, set high standards, and remain true to your values.
Earn the respect of others. Live with integrity, let your actions speak louder than words, and refuse to compromise your honor for any price.
Live every day to the max. Reach for the stars, but never lose sight of the garden that you grew in.
Surround yourself with top-notch people. Choose your friends wisely and know the impact they have on your behavior.
Make everyone feel special. Bring out the best in people, treat them with dignity and respect, and make a difference in their lives.
Build bonds of trust. Be humble and kind, act fairly and be dependable, promote openness and honesty, and always do right by others.
Construct valuable relationships. Put others first, make your relationships mutually beneficial, and never win at the expense of a relationship.
Lead by example. Be an exemplary role model, do what’s right, and always let your conscience be your guide.
Live with purpose. Believe in a cause greater than yourself. As the saying goes, “The real measure of your wealth is how much you’d be worth if you lost all your money.”
When you find yourself, you’ll gain a new perspective about who you are, what you stand for, and where you’re heading. At the end of the day, your option is simple: Define yourself by accident or define yourself by choice.
I’d Love to Hear Your Thoughts!
Please leave a comment and tell us what you think or share it with someone who can benefit from the information.
Living Life With a Purpose
Moral Character Matters
35 Questions to Inspire Self-Reflection
What Does Your Name Say About You?
6 Ways to Know You Need A Course Correction
Reputation: You Can’t Run from Your Shadow
The Power of One
If you like this article, subscribe to our blog so that you don’t miss a single post. Get future posts by RSS feed, email or Facebook. It’s FREE.
You certainly nailed this post Frank. Life is about making choices. Not every choice will be the correct one. Being you or who you want to be and using that frame of mind as your guidepost will bring success and happiness to your daily life.
Frank Sonnenberg says
You’re so right, Jack.
The future you get depends on the choices you make. Period.
Some days you’ll make good choices; other times you won’t. That’s life. It’s important to accept responsibility for your decisions rather than shifting the blame to others. Accepting responsibility will instill humility, boost self-reliance, and emphasize the importance of making good choices.
Thanks for taking the time to write.
Kare Anderson says
Frank your “To Be” and your specific suggestions to “Be the Author of Your Life Story resonated with me so strongly as I read them that I have copied them and printed them and posted it on my studio wall as a stead reminder. Thank you It sure seems to be the way you lead your life. And the traits reflect your mutuality mindset. I might add: “Seek folks with complementary talents” to enrich your life and learn and theirs
Frank Sonnenberg says
AWWW That means so much to me, Kare. Thank you. A compliment is even more special when it comes from someone you respect.
This post is near and dear to my heart. The message is simple…
You get to choose how to live your life. The choices are easy. The tough part is living with them.
After all is said and done, if you can’t face yourself in the mirror each day, nothing else matters.
Thanks for taking the time to write.