Random Thoughts - Living Intentionally
Most of us have good intentions or at least Most of us have good intentions or at least some kind of justification for the things we do. And yet so many of us seem surprised when we find ourselves a long way from the direction we want to go. The big changes in our lives—both negative and positive—rarely happen without a series of decisions piling on top of each other like never-ending dominoes.
So what happens with life slips off the rails and we find our live feeling more like a train wreck instead of heading at an appointed destination? Its in these moments we need to take stock in who we are, what is our created potential and what am I choosing to live for? Sounds like a recipe for therapy. Actually, in this situation you may be wrong. What if the real way to move forward looked like someone who helped us look life in the moment clearly in the face and said, where do you want you life to go? What would your best life look like?
I wish looking back on my life, I had someone asking me hard questions to asses my life choices. I wish someone was teaching me to live more in the moment instead of rushing ahead to the next big thing. All of us need to be moving forward, but at a pace that makes sense and on the right path. For me, my life has been full of interesting twists and turns. Raising two boys with my wife of 35 years was not easy. I always said God had a sense of humor as he gave us two handsome young men who were diagnosed with ADD and ADHD. We tried making changes to their diet and working with them on ways to self regulate but in the end medication was the silver bullet to helping them better navigate life at a young age. Then the steps we were taking to help them learn how to navigate life began to make more sense as they could slow down.
Working in mental health for almost 28 years, I will admit to you that there were days that as I shifted hats to the dad hat it still felt like the mental health hat. I will say, as a dad, I just needed to tell my boys more often that I believed in them that they could be anything they wanted to be. But I will confess I did not do that consistently and we guided our sons into activities that would help them in their independence. We spent countless hours with our boys and one thing was crystal clear - we loved them more than life itself. We made sacrifices and I would do them all over again. Some areas of parenthood I would do over if I could. But you don't get second chances. As they grow you shift roles from parenting to coaching.
That brings me to where I am today - I coach rather than mentor or tell you what to do. I am not the expert in your life. I am not the expert in my sons lives. I can ask questions to promote curiosity in what steps to take next. Yet telling anyone what to do with their lives, in the end is not overly productive. Helping someone explore their potential and creating steps to get their that is honestly the best feeling in life. Why? Because just for a moment in time - you get the privilege and honor to do life with them. You get a front row seat for that moment when the lights come on inside their heads and they say things like - thats a good question or I had never thought about it from that angle. Guess what, life coaches help people look at life from a different perspective.
Today I enjoy the opportunity to be coached by someone as well. I explore where I am, who say I am and explore for myself am I really in alignment with my own values. Guess what, there are moments I am out of alignment and it explains for me why I feel in conflict with myself because I am not being true to what I really believe. You may ask well what do you believe. I could spend hours talking to you about my faith in Christ and how this relationship changes me. I can also be real with you and say sometimes I am selfish and focus more on what I want and I find myself out of tune with this relationship that teaches me about humility, surrender, caring for others and finding my real joy is not in being selfish its about being giving.
So that leads me back again to coaching. Why do it? Why intentionally spend an hour listening in on someones world asking them questions that help them move towards the big ideas through small paced steps? Because as a coach, and as a believer in Christ - I believe the journey is not all about me. Its about giving back each day. Its about being a good listener. Its about asking tough questions. Its about living in the moment.
Today let me ask you what would your life feel like if you lived in the moment?
How would your day go if you unplugged from social media and spent time face to face?
The second question puts fear in the heart of some people. But really, we act like we are connected but lack real connections. Our current pandemic is drawing that out in all of us. But that is a topic for another day.
These are some random thoughts. Sharing a little of me with you. Saying - live life intentionally. Don't live life just for you - give back - listen better. Find out what life is like when you learn to enter peoples lives in a meaningful way. Its way better than twitter, snap chat, tick tock, FaceBook or Instagram. Why - because you get instant feedback, from their eyes, vocal inflection, body language and the awesome conversations you will evoke.