My husband and I will be spending next week-end in Savannah, Ga; truly a favorite spot for a low-key, romantic getaway. One of the sights I have come to appreciate in that area are the old cemeteries. I have matured from someone who held her breath every time I drove past one, to a person who slowly wanders through the gardens, examining each stone and plot..imagining the life stories of those who rest there.
Family plots are the most thought provoking of all; generation after generation gathered in one spot. It is a stark reminder of how fleeting life is.. you are born.. you live your life.. it ends.. your offspring grab the family baton for their own “run around the track” until they pass it on..
It has made me wonder, if life is so ephemeral, what’s the point?
Sure, some of us will do important things and be remembered in books, but most of us will touch a much smaller group of people; (hopefully in a positive way.) Considering all of the ups, downs and struggles inherent with existence on earth, we’d do well to have formulated an answer to the question above.
Which brings me to the idea of creating a personal mission statement- carefully thinking through (and putting into words) the philosophical cornerstone upon which our lives are built – a touchstone to remind ourselves what we stand for and hopefully answering the age old question; “what is the purpose of my life?”
After much thought, this is what my personal mission statement boils down to:
The purpose of my life is to humbly and gratefully embrace every day as a fresh opportunity to practice productive compassion, continuous growth, loving attentiveness, steadfast commitment and unwavering faith in order to have a positive impact on the lives of those around me.
Distilled into one simple word.. matter.
(.. interesting how similar the word matter is to mother -“Mutter” in German-)
I have been given this body and this mind at this moment in time to use in a way that truly matters, both to God and man.. now and eternally…which in a round about way brings me back to my goal of healthy and effective living.
There is no doubt that a body that’s cared for will not only perform better, but hopefully “last” longer. It’s hard to lead an impactful life if we feel physically and psychologically drained and “flabby.” Let me be honest, when I’m not feeling my best, I become pretty introverted and self-absorbed, the absolute opposite direction of where I want my energy and attention to flow.
My mission statement is designed to remind me of the ultimate point of everything I do..including taking care of myself. To this end, I am not only going to read my personal statement every morning, but I am ordering this awesome bracelet my daughter told me about.
Seems these are all the rage right now as people log on to myintent.org to pick out their own personal inspirational “word” and wear it as a daily reminder.
My bracelet will say “matter.”
To recap the last 3 posts..
STEP #3 Create a personal mission statement; your answer to the question “what’s the point of it all?”
STEP #2- Compose a to-do-list for the day in a planner or on your phone. (not a random piece of paper)
STEP #1- Start the day with five or ten minutes of personal calibration. ( see Wednesday’s post) Align your spirit (your insides- the essence of who you are or want to be) with your physical, outward life – the essence of what you are doing today.)