If you already feel extremely overburdened by your daily share of activities, this question makes no sense.
You might say: “Well, I have a lot of things I’m pursuing right now. A series of goals. A long sequence of unfinished projects. A lot of commitments and deadlines.
What’s the fun in adding philosophy in this long list?
Once I have everything sorted out, I can always have the luxury of delineating the broader contours of life philosophy.”
But my friend, there are others who have absolutely no problem answering this with conviction—This is what I want. Everything becomes a bit clearer when you bring that level of clarity in your goal.
It’s not what you want to get done today, tomorrow or even this year. It’s what you’re trying to get out of life. What you are doing now, is it helpful in making it a reality?
If not then, what’s stopping you from making amend?
“A clear, well-defined philosophy gives you the guidelines and boundaries that keep you on track,”— precise reason why you should have one that would drive all your actions.
These philosophies are nothing but your life long commitment aspiring to move much beyond simple self-improvement. The ultimate goal here is radical transformation —— of self and society. And that becomes a possibility when you are willing to explore the meaning and purpose of life & your legitimate place in the universe.
The expression of your character’s strengths and virtues, for example, the courage to speak out despite opposition and magnanimity to accept criticism without being provoked are some of the daily steps that should get guided by your core set of philosophy.
Let’s say your philosophy is to do things better than they have ever been done before — think of this as top-level goal — a compass that gives direction and meaning to all the goals below it.
There is a possibility that you might require many lower level and mid-level goals to achieve your highest level goal.
For instance, getting out of your door by eight a.m. may look like a low-level goal, but it definitely matters because of a mid-level goal: arriving at work on time.
Why do you care about that? Because you want to be punctual.
Why do you care about that? Because being punctual shows respect for the people with whom you work.
Why is that important? Because somewhere on your visionary board you strive to be a good leader.
A definite philosophy helps you in identifying What you really care about. When you know what you care about then you become loyal and steady in pursuing your ultimate goal.
Here it is more important to keep the resolutions you have already made than to keep making the new ones.
You are not capricious anymore.
Each day, you wake up thinking of the same set of questions you fell asleep thinking about. You are, in a sense, pointing in the same direction, ever eager to take even the tiniest step forward rather than accepting any digression.
One of my core belief that has successfully stood the test of time:
Keep your unadulterated focus on what is in your control and accept what isn’t. This simple belief, when practiced in your daily life, can bring incredible increments in your efficacy, while simultaneously reducing your frustration.
How does this whole thing help?
When you happen to be in uncomfortable territory that is when things aren’t going according to your plan or you seem to be consistently overwhelmed by the sequence of external events. You need to draw the requisite strength from your philosophy.
Let’s talk about your worst fear: losing your job: you can always blame the economy, and play the victim. Feel helpless and get into the never-ending cycle of the complaint, or accept the reality, and start the search for your new future.
But even if you do lose your job – why get upset?
Dig a little deeper and you will find that it’s because of your unrealistic expectations of keeping your job forever.
When you are in the happy space, that’s the time when the need of your philosophy is more so as to keep yourself on track, ‘cause as a result of success, you might get the bundle of varied opportunities and accordingly would be tempted to encash all of them. But your chosen philosophical path will make sure that you remain close to the originally committed path.
There is a very bright chance one might call your focus obsessive because most of your actions will end up deriving their significance from their allegiance to your ultimate concern—your life philosophy.
You have your priorities in order.
In very committed people, most mid-level and low-level goals are, in some way or another, related to that ultimate goal. In contrast, a lack of commitment and perseverance can make you have a less coherent goal structures.
However, the idea that our lives should be guided by one top-level goal is an idealized extreme that may not be desirable even for the grittiest and craziest of us.
Still, I would argue that it’s possible to pare down long lists of mid-level and low-level work goals according to how they serve a goal of supreme importance.
And I think, the more unified, aligned, and coordinated our goal hierarchies, the better. But at the same time every once in a while you shouldn’t hesitate in taking a pause.
Stop for a moment and start appreciating the absence of pain and savoring the mere fact of being here. Is it possible for you to appreciate every day like someone who has just survived a car accident?
And please do make sure that you are not putting your happiness off to the future, for example, that you will be happy after you have saved enough money for that big exotic trip or after getting that big promotion.
Change the age in which you live, and you have too much. But in every age, what is enough remains the same.
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