Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Self: The key to fulfilment - #Day7 of #30DaysofCreativity

(If you have read my blog posts before today in the month of June 2011, you'll have noticed I've been putting up drawings for the 30 Days of Creativity. Today I have decided to creatively deviate and write an actual post :) )

Last weekend something clicked.

On Saturday, The Fly Blog alerted me to a feature about fulfilment from The New York Times and the following particular sentence struck out to me:

"Most of us are egotistical and most are self-concerned most of the time, but it’s nonetheless true that life comes to a point only in those moments when the self dissolves into some task. The purpose in life is not to find yourself. It’s to lose yourself."

Wow – I think I'd heard sentiments like that before, but it really struck a chord that day, I don't know why.

And in church on Sunday, the minister assigned to direct our prayer points highlighted: "[Here in the UK] Next year, the Queen will have served the nation for SIXTY years."

If 'serving' is not losing yourself, then I don't know what is – but do we realise that when we look back at our lives at some point in the future we will see that we had served a unitary thing throughout our time on Earth, regardless of whether we knew it or not?

When the aforementioned Queen hands out New Year's and Birthday honours to people, it's usually for the receiver's contribution to a specific field over the years, and I think we can use these honours as a system or template for our own lives. So ask yourself: what have you been serving so far (because you have been!), and if you like what you have been serving (whether it be the community, your customers, an industry such as fashion, visual arts or music, the sciences, retail, pupils and students, an organisation or movement, business clients, the homeless, your family, your lifelong ambitions for example) that's great, continue!

But if you're not so pleased – ask yourself what (or whom) you would like to start serving from now on. If you're not sure, just look for a problem and go about trying to help solve it, and put your back into it – and know it will take longevity and stickability, not necessarily sixty years, but you know, years dedicated to a good cause is a good look for your life, too.

Do you agree, disagree, think it's not as simple as that? 

Who or what have you been serving?


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