On http://43things.com (a fantastic goal-setting website that I encourage you to check out!), 5,576 people have declared that they want to Live Passionately.
Whew, that's a lot of people! But what is passionate living, anyway? To me, it means living consciously, staying active, and as a friend reminded me recently-- without fear. It is having the courage to engage with the outside world as well as the desires within you.
I've always been a sucker for acronyms. Since I'm hoping to make this a reoccuring post topic, I present to you CAP, which stands for being conscious, active, and passionate!
Here are some ways to fulfill your CAPacity:
1) Stay inspired. It might sound cheesy, but passion is like a fire that needs constant feeding. Also, inspiration IS all around you, but don't wait for it to come to you (contrary the myth of creative types sitting around dejected until inspiration strikes like lightning). Create inspiration for yourself!
I've been keeping an aesthetic inspiration book for more than a year now. It's a gorgeous thick-papered Canson that allows me to collage freely on its pages without fearing stains or buckling.
You can also make posters, cover your walls, buy a pack of glass-safe markers and scribble quotes on your windows-- anything that excites you!
2) Get up when the alarm goes off. Do you hit the snooze button three times, or set three different cell phone alarms (guilty!) to delay waking up just a littleeee bit longer? Try setting an audible alarm halfway across the room! Or commit to a sleep schedule! You can try Steve Pavlina's technique here. It worked for me in the summer, but I've found a more realistic approach is to sleep for relatively the same number of hours each night, regardless of specific times.
In any case, the way you start the day is so, so important, and affects your actions thereafter. If you're energetic and prompt as you rise, you'll be so much more uplifted and efficient throughout the day. If you greet the day with procrastination...you get the picture!
3) Know what you want. To me, this is hands-down the most important way to live consciously. It sounds simple, but so many people don't pay enough attention to this! How often do you ask yourself the following questions?
- What do I want out of this situation?
- Is this task/errand/phone conversation/relationship in my best interest?
- Am I doing what I really want with my free time?
- Am I heading in a direction that will make me happy?
You don't need to take it to an extreme and ask yourself every other minute, but taking some time every day to re-evaluate will revolutionize the way you live. Of course, you can always argue that you have no choice but to do x, or spend time with y. But you know what? You almost always do.
It just takes a little (or in some cases, a Lot) of courage! But isn't that what living passionately is all about?
Please let me know what you think! Should I continue these "CAP" posts?