What makes a Good Life?
No matter who we are, what age we are, what job we do, what life we lead, what race, gender, or faith, there seems to be 3 elements that are of great importance in everyone’s life –
Time – Heartfelt Connection – Purpose.
Putting the energy of a New Year’s resolutions into one of these 3, seems worthy to me.
Time is obvious – the length of time we assume we have to live (and that is one heck of an assumption!) can often determine how we live. Perhaps even the purpose of that living.
In turn, the purpose of our living greatly impacts our connections – with others and with our environment.
These three ‘assets’, our time, our connections and our purpose, both motivate and define us, and I would also say, define our happiness, and our contentment, even our sense of self worth.
Believing we have a lack of time can hone both our purpose and our connections.
Whilst, a lack of purpose and/or connections, can leave us bereft and floundering in our time.
Psychiatrist Robert Waldinger, as the fourth director of a longitudinal study on adult development, speaks to, ‘What makes a good life?’ in his 2016 TED Talk. He states that the clearest lesson learnt from this magnificent 75+ year study, found that it is quite simply, good relationships that keep us happier and healthier in life.
The study shows that social connections are really good for us. Healthy social connections with family, friends and community, allow us to live happier and longer lives.
It’s not the relationships as such, but the quality of those close relationships that matter. It’s not whether you’re married, nor how many friends you have – but it is the QUALITY of the connections you make with everyone you meet in your daily life, that creates your health and happiness.
Living in conflict is bad for your health – living in warm relationships is protective for your brain, and body, and spirit.
No wonder I find my life as a relationship counsellor so profoundly satisfying. I get to connect, truly deeply emotively connect, with my clients, with the sole (and soul) purpose of helping them to deeply connect with themselves and others. It often feels like time stands still in my counselling room as these connections take place. Time both stands still, and flies past – we become unaware of the time so preciously devoted to connecting and finding purpose in our lives.
We devote time to honing connection to create purpose – it is time well spent together.
I wish this for all of my clients, my friends, my family, and you – time spent in wonderful meaningful connections that bring purpose to your life. That is my wish for 2021. With physical distancing still being demanded in 2021 this will mean extra energy given to emotive connection to span the divide created by physical disconnection.
No matter what your 2020 was like, what any of your previous life was like in fact … this is your life now … your creation ….and your opportunity to create … as it is mine.
I’ll be focusing on leaning into relationships with purpose and the gift of my time.
Happy New Year.