What does it mean to have an awesome life… for you?

I almost cried while watching a TED talk by Neil Parsricha, the man behind 1000 Awesome Things. The story he shares with us in his talk is heartbreaking at times, and it’s packed with positive feelings as well. I was amazed at how excellent he is as a storyteller. I believe his storytelling ability comes from 3 A’s of awesome he talks about in his talk: Attitude, Awareness, and Authenticity. He has an attitude that he would choose to focus on awesome things in life, he is aware of what’s happening around him, and he is authentic. These 3 A’s of awesome are what Neil thinks to be essential for having an awesome life.

Neil’s talk resonates with me. If you’ve been reading this blog for a while and like it (thank you, it means a lot to me), there’s a great chance that you’ll love his talk as well. Please watch it.

What does it mean to have an awesome life… for you?

I believe it’s important to have your own standard of being awesome or having an awesome rather than following standards defined by others. The reason for this belief is simple: following someone else’s standard of having an awesome life does not necessarily make you happy. Perhaps you are supposed to buy a house and to settle down, according to someone else’s standard. But, if you are inclined to travel from place to place, then settling down won’t make you happy. I don’t think that an unhappy life can lead you to an awesome life.

What does it mean to have an awesome life for you? What makes your life awesome for you? What matters to you? What doesn’t matter to you?

For me, what it means to have an awesome life is to live my life fully. I act rather than react. I set my own purpose of living and create a meaning for my life. I live with the “my life is my art” attitude. Life is a carnival and I’m here to live, love, create and celebrate. I’m in search of beautiful moments.

Probably you can see why Neil’s talk resonates with me. My ideally awesome life coincides with these 3 A’s of awesome Neil talks about.

I had been missing until recently the importance of creating value, and giving it to or sharing it with others. What goes along with this line of thinking is: It’s great to help others achieve an awesome life. I bet this way of thinking has been around for ages; it’s a superb way of making your life even more awesome, too. (By the way, I recommend you to take a look at this article by Ashley of The Middle Finger Project.)

One thing that helps us have a head start is, by the way, to realize that our life is pretty awesome when we have the right attitude, awareness about what’s happening around us and are authentic as Neil claims in his talk. You can choose how you take care of your life and that alone makes your life awesome.

Don’t bash yourself too harshly if you are inclined to do so. I’ll tell you why. Bashing yourself harshly won’t make things better. It will just make you feel worse. Likewise, being positive won’t make problems go away, but it won’t make you feel at least. Instead, it will make you feel better. There is probably a fine line between being positive and being delusional, but, hey, it’s a matter of focus.

I can give you a fresh example – I went out tonight and bought a drink. I got a 500 yen coin (i.e. $5, very roughly) for a change and put it in a pocket. I had forgotten that there is a hole in that pocket. It seems that I lost the 500 yen coin through that hole. Now, a 500 yen coin is not too big a deal, but it could buy me a meal. I could swear at myself for being stupid, and make it a big deal. I choose not to do so. Perhaps someone picked up my 500 yen coin and he or she got 500 yen richer. Very good. I’m happy for that person who found it.

It’s a petite example, but I believe it’s illustrative enough. I chose to focus on something positive about my loss and I’m rather feeling happy about it. Being lighthearted is the trick here.

What do you choose to focus on? I just want you to know that you can choose to focus on awesome things in life and start living an awesome life, which you are having right now no matter whether you are aware of it or not. (If not, be aware! Now!)

If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with your friends by clicking the like button or the tweet button below or by other means. That’s how you can help me grow this blog. Thank you! You can subscribe to this blog via RSS or e-mail, too. I’m looking forward to connecting with you!

Photo: visualpanic

Take back your creativity

Do you feel you are creative? If you do, that’s great. Keep rocking.

Or do you feel you’ve lost your childhood creativity along the way? If you feel this way about creativity, I’m here to tell you that it’s not too late to take your creativity back to you.

And I’ll tell you how to get it back.

Creativity is relevant to what I want to talk about on this blog – minimizing stuff, maximizing experience, living your life as your art, and making the world more romantic – as well as relevant to other life activities in general.

I don’t have a nice and simple definition of creativity, but let me specify what I’m talking about when I refer to creativity.

I’ll begin by what I don’t believe creativity is.

  • I don’t believe creativity is a special ability that only talented people (whatever that means) have.
  • I don’t believe creativity is something you can’t get back once you’ve lost it.
  • I don’t believe creativity is limited to certain areas of life, such as creating artworks, designing products and making innovations.

Instead…

  • I believe creativity is for everyone. I believe you are creative.
  • If you are not creative, I believe you can be creative. I believe you have that potential.
  • I believe creativity applies to every area of life.

But why do I believe these things? Let me say more about what I believe creativity is.

  • I believe having creativity is about being able to find a new or hidden connection by combining what you already know or have.
  • I believe creativity is more like an attitude than an innate talent.
  • I believe curiosity plays an important role in creativity. In fact, I believe creativity is an outcome of curiosity and action that happens to discover a new or hidden connection between old things.

So, what these beliefs imply is that you can be creative by having curiosity about things around you and by acting upon your curiosity. Whether you find a new or hidden connection may depend on the situation, but if you are not afraid of taking action upon your curiosity, you will find such a connection at times.

Let me add one more thing about why it’s great to be creative, by the way. There are a lot of people who can give you great lessons of life, but what you learn from them is not completely taylor-made for you. No matter how great they are, it’s very likely that they won’t fit exactly with the way you live. So, you’ll need to customize them. In order to customize them, you need to be creative so you can find a hidden path that unites the lessons others teach you with who you are.

But, how can you take your creativity back? Right, you want to have that killer curiosity and take action… but you want to know more about it in details.

How I got my creativity back

The shortest answer is: By working on The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. This book costs only $10.85 and if you manage to finish it, you will have great benefits, one of the greatest benefits being taking your creativity back. While I recommned you to work on this book and I will write a post on how to finish it soon, there are things you can start doing without reading the book.

What you want to be able to do is to be curious about small things around you and to take action upon your curiosity.

  1. Learn and think more about creativity by watching these TED talks on creativity (Ken Robinson, Elizabeth Gilbert, and Tim Brown). These inspirational talks can expand your mind and help you change your attitudes about creativity.
  2. Write down what you wanted to do as a child. Once you remember these things you wanted to do as a child, do some of them you can do. If you can’t do on a full scale, try doing it on a smaller scale. If you can’t be a pilot, try a flight simulator.
  3. Write down what you want to do now. Like the things you wanted to do as a child, see if you can do them. If you want to travel to Brazil, even watching a Brazilian movie can inspire you.
  4. Try new things. If you take the same route every day to your local station, for example, try to take another route. Or if you order the same drink at a cafe, try something you’ve never tried before. Or perhaps you want to learn cooking – give it a try!
  5. Take small steps. If you are afraid of doing something new, because you need to take a big step, why don’t you try taking a small step instead? It’s completely fine to take a small step and you can make it bigger from there. But make sure to challenge yourself once you’ve completed that small step.
  6. Do what you liked doing as a child. It can be playing soccer, colouring, eating a favorite sweet… anything.
  7. As soon as you wake up, write down your thoughts for 3 pages in a notebook everyday. Don’t edit what you write. Don’t show it to anyone. You just write and don’t read what you’ve written. This is one of the core exercises in The Artist’s Way and it’s probably the most powerful exercise in that book as well.

And most importantly…

Enjoy whatever you do and find great joy in small things!

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If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with your friends by clicking the like button or the tweet button below or by other means. That’s how you can help me grow this blog. Thank you! You can subscribe to this blog via RSS or e-mail, too. I’m looking forward to connecting with you!

Photo: crsan

Connecting 4 dots: how to live a romantic life and make the world more romantic

This post is for those who want to live a romantic life and to make the world more romantic. I’ll give you a brief outline of how you can do that by minimizing stuff, maximizing experience, living your life as your art, and finally, making the world more romantic.

From one idea to four steps: How I got there

In the middle of 2010, I realized a higher purpose of my life –  I want to make the world more romantic. This is one of the big things I want to achieve in my life, because I see it’s how I can make the world a better place. If you’ve been following this blog for a while, you may know what I’m talking about. If you are new to this blog, you may not see what I mean. Keep reading on and you’ll know it.

Around the same time, I figured that I want to live my life as my art. That’s another ambiguous idea, especially when you try to understand what exactly it means.

These ideas get along with one another pretty well, because living your life as your art is, in my view, what it means to live romantically. If you live romantically, you are making the world a little bit more romantic. So, there you go.

Living my life as my art is how I make the world more romantic – this has been the core theme of this blog, and writing about it helped me clarify what’s involved in living your life as your art.

How do you live your life as your art? Wait, what exactly does it mean to live your life as your art? I’ll give more detailed answers to these questions, but for now, let me say this – living your life as your art means living fully, and you live it by maximizing experience.

In order to maximize experience, you need to get rid of or stay away from distractions, blocks, and clutters. In other words, you need to minimize stuff.

Through clarification, I came to realize that this project of making the world more romantic consists of the following 4 steps.

  • Minimize stuff
  • Maximize experience
  • Live your life as your art
  • Make the world more romantic

How They Are Connected

Before I explain what’s involved in these step, I want to draw connections between each step so you can have a better grasp of the big picture. The first step is to minimize stuff. What I mean by “stuff” here is everything that creates distractions for you. By eliminating such distractions as much as possible, you’ll have a good foundation for the second step: maximizing experience. If you choose to live your life as your art, which is the third step, maximizing experience is a great way to do so, because living your life as your art involves meeting amazing people as well as having wonderful experiences. Once you’ve completed this step, the fourth step – making the world more romantic should be easy enough for you, because you are already being romantic by living your life as your art and what you can do further is to connect with other amazing people who live an amazing life; that’s how we make the world more romantic.

First Step: Minimizing Stuff

How do you focus on what you want to do when there are so many things that keep you away from what you love and what you want to do in your life? You could try by using various methods to manage clutters and to make sure you focus on what you want to do.

But that’s like fighting a fight you can’t win. Instead of wasting your time, energy and resources, avoid fighting and move on.

For a quick start, you can start eliminate things you have. Do you need that pile of documents? No? Get rid of them. Have you worn those clothes recently? No? You can get rid of them too.

In addition to physical distractions, there are mental distractions as well. It may be trickier to get rid of mental distractions than physical distractions, but it can be done. For example, you can write down whatever that comes to your mind for 3 pages by handwriting every morning. This exercise is one of the core exercises in Julia Cameron’s book The Artist’s Way. If you keep doing it everyday for a few months, it can help you dump your mental distractions.

If you don’t have to manage your physical or mental distractions, you’ll be able to have more time, energy and other resources for what you love. This alone can be a great motivation to minimize stuff. But what we want to aim here is more than that. We want to maximize experience.

Second Step: Maximize Experience

There could be various ways of describing why one wants to maximize experience, but I believe the fundamental reason that underlies them is to live the best life one could live. You want to live fully, don’t you? I do.

How can we maximize experience? I think the following are essential:

  • Know what you want to do: Knowing what you want to do gives you a direction. If you know it already, that’s great. You can focus on it. If you don’t know it yet, don’t worry. You have plenty of time to figure it out, but make sure to start working on it right now.
  • Be curious: Curiosity is one of the best things you can have when you maximize experience. Curiosity helps you be open to wonderful and beautiful experiences life has to offer. Also, I believe the desire to satisfy your curiosity is a great motivator for what you do. So, it’s important to develop your curiosity. This is especially true if you’ve lost your curiosity somewhere along the way while growing up.
  • Celebrate: Live to celebrate your life. Whether to celebrate it or not is a choice you can make. Everything and everyone will enrich your life one way or another if you choose to learn lessons from them. If you live with this attitude, your life will be richer than now.

Third Step: Live Your Life As Your Art

I like this art metaphor, and it’s because I want to see my life as something I create rather than something I have no control of. Also, I believe that amazing people I meet as well as great experiences I experience contribute to my art. In fact, I believe they are invaluable elements of my art. They give me stories, visions, sounds, and everything else that enriches my life. I want to create this artwork and share it with those who matter to me.

Most of how I create it is already covered in Second Step – by maximizing experience.

One extra thing you need to do when taking this step is to be aware of your creation. Some of you may not fancy living your life this way and may want to live it another way. That’s totally fine. If you want to live your life as your art, however, you can do it by all means. This attitude of living your life as your art will get you move into that direction.

This way of living will be much better when you connect with other people who have the same attitude towards living. Connect with them, and combine your art with their arts. It will become something greater.

Fourth Step: Making The World More Romantic

If you’ve completed the three steps above, I guarantee you that you’ve become the romance you want to see in the world. The world has one more person who lives her or his life fully and it has become a little bit more romantic for that reason.

Once you’ve got to this stage, I believe you’ll be able to start influencing others to live their lives fully. This will help making the world more romantic, too.

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If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with your friends by clicking the like button or the tweet button below or by other means. That’s how you can help me grow this blog. Thank you! You can subscribe to this blog via RSS or e-mail, too. I’m looking forward to connecting with you!

27 lessons on how to live your life as your art

New Year, New Start

What do you want your 2011 to be like?

I choose to make it an amazing year, and I’ll do so by working on my goals. At the very core of these goals, there are two ideas that drive me. One is the idea of minimizing stuff and maximizing experience. The other idea is to live my life as my art. This is how I choose to maximize experience.

The focus of this blog has been more exploratory and personal last year. That is, it was more about me than you. From this year on, however, I will write more and focus more on how you can minimize stuff, maximize experience, and live your life as your art. If you are interested in living a great life on your own terms, then join me and subscribe to this blog (via RSS or e-mail). You can follow me on twitter as well.

27 Years, 27 Lessons, and How to Live Your Life as Your Art

On 1 January 2011, I turned 27. I want to share with you some of the great lessons I learnt from my 27 years of life. For me, these lessons guide me in living my life as my art.

This is my birthday gift to you. (Who said you can’t give gifts to others on your own birthday?)

I hope at least some of them are relevant to you and there’s something you can take away.

  1. Don’t listen to non-sense. When people say that you won’t make it with what you do, they usually have no experiences in what you do and it’s not their business to tell you what to do or what not to do. You don’t have to be impolite to them, but it’s perfectly OK for you not to follow them.
  2. It’s OK to be different from other people. In fact, you are different from others by definition. There’s no reason why you should take extra steps to become someone who you are not.
  3. Create and walk your own path. You can choose the way you want to live your life. Yes, it might be difficult, but not impossible. Also, it’s more rewarding to live your life that way.
  4. Don’t apologize for being who you are. You don’t need to present yourself lower than you actually are. It’s not arrogant or impolite to mention how good you are, especially when someone gives you compliments. Just thank them and that’s all.
  5. Be able to laugh at yourself. Share your imperfections with others and have fun. In fact, showing your weaknesses is a very strong act. That’s what it means to live with a sense of ease and delight.
  6. Get to know yourself. You are better than what you assume yourself to be. Explore your possibilities. Be fair to yourself.
  7. Build a strong foundation. It’s essential if you want to get better at everything. For example, focus on fundamental moves (and principles behind them),  because they are much more important than flashy moves.
  8. Don’t live in the past. You can thank and acknowledge your past, and then simply move on to the future you want to head towards.
  9. Look for similarities. We make connections by noticing similarities within us. While differences are important in the sense that they can make us intrigued about others, never forget that other human beings from different backgrounds are just like you.
  10. Don’t beat up yourself. You are where you are, and there’s nothing so wrong about you being there that you need to beat yourself up. Instead of spending your precious time on doing nothing but criticizing yourself, do what improves your situation.
  11. Believe in yourself. That’s one way to interpret what it means to be confident. No matter what others say, you trust yourself.
  12. Be aware of hidden assumptions. It’s easy to misunderstand others due to the fact that they are talking about something totally different from what you are talking about. When you listen to others, make sure to clarify these assumptions.
  13. Don’t be afraid of loving or being loved. Loving and being loved can be risky, in the sense that you might get hurt and nothing in return. But, so what? Being able to love someone or some people as well as having someone or some people love you are both amazing things in themselves.
  14. Don’t make women your adventure. Take them on an adventure with you instead. In other words, don’t chase them, but keep chasing your dreams and invite them to come along with you.
  15. Love is inclusive, not exclusive. When you love someone, this love for that person is specific to that person, because love is about accepting that person as who she or he is; no one else can be compared with that person. Your love for Person A is different from your love for Person B.
  16. You can’t possess anyone. When you are in a relationship with someone, it doesn’t mean you own that person or that you are owned by that person.
  17. Curiosity is a key to a number of things. Curiosity is what relationships keep going. Curiosity is how we create things. Curiosity is what makes our lives amusing and amazing.
  18. Find your tribe members. They believe in you. They have similar interests with you. They are the ones that matter to you. Grow together with them.
  19. You can do what you love while helping others. It’s not mutually exclusive. You can read more on this lesson in Chris Guillebeau’s free PDF manifesto here.
  20. Let go. Don’t accumulate. These ideas apply to you if you want to have a fewer distractions in your life and to maximize your experiences. It’s easier to have less and to experience more than to have to manage many clutters in your life. Regarding a minimalistic lifestyle, Everett Bogue’s Far Beyond The Stars is a good place to start.
  21. You can interpret your childhood dreams in a creative way. Even if your childhood dream is something like “to become Pegasus“, it’s possible to find a way to become Pegasus, at least in a metaphorical way.
  22. You can learn from everything you experience. When you see your life from this angle, you can start becoming appreciative of what it has to offer. For example. my parents got divorced when I was 10 and my father past away when I was 14; these events made me a big impact on my life and I can say I made something positive out of these experiences.
  23. You’re resourceful. You might think that you don’t have enough. But it’s important to realize that you do, at least, have what you need to get yourself started. It’s much better to have this abundance mentality than to have the scarcity mentality, because you appreciate what you already have and think what you can do with what you have.
  24. Focus on sharing and giving rather than taking. When you involve other like-minded people in your life by sharing something amazing with and giving it to them, your life and their lives will expand more.
  25. Do it anyway. Making mistakes is fine. Reading or planning too much before taking action can only delay your start. Your preparation will never be perfect. Rather than trying to find the perfect timing to start something, start it as soon as possible.
  26. Have a healthy lifestyle. Being fit and healthy is essential for any kind of activities you do whether it’s something that involves your body or something that involves a lot of thinking. Eat properly and do physical exercises regularly. Breathe well. You’ll be able to play hard if you are fit and healthy.
  27. Your life is your art. Things you experience and fantastic people you meet and connect with contribute to your art; they give you stories, visions, sounds and everything else to your art.  Live with this attitude. Celebrate what your life has to offer. You’ll create an amazing art. A life full of wonderful moments.

These are the core lessons I learnt in my 27 years of life. If you are over 27, what were you like when you were 27? If you are under 27, what do you want to be like when you are 27? Are there any lessons you want to share with us? Do let me know in the comment section, via twitter, or via the contact form.

I hope your 2011 will be an amazing year!

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If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with your friends by clicking the like button or the tweet button below or by other means. That’s how you can help me grow this blog. Thank you! You can subscribe to this blog via RSS or e-mail, too. I’m looking forward to connecting with you!

Photo: Aube insanité

On jumping, eating and breathing

This post will answer the prompts 25 (Photo), 26 (Soul Food) and 27 (Ordinary Joy)  of Reverb10. Join us and reflect on your year 2010…

Prompt 25: Photo

Sift through all the photos of you from the past year. Choose one that best captures you; either who you are, or who you strive to be. Find the shot of you that is worth a thousand words. Share the image, who shot it, where, and what it best reveals about you.

(Author: Tracey Clark)

{Future tool: Soul Biographies: Thoughts Become Things. For the next 7 days as you round out your year, we’ll share one tool each day to help you plan your year ahead.}

This photo on the left was taken by Fernando Ramos in Shinjuku, Tokyo. Fernando gave it a name – “Jump for Life, Joy and Everything Inbetween”, and I think this title describes this jump very well. I jump for life, joy and everything inbetween. I jump even if no one is jumping. I jumped because I wanted to jump.

What do you do when you are happy? Do you jump? Or dance? Or sing?

By the way, Fernando runs a photo meme called SnapStory1000. The most basic rule is that you take a photo, write a short story based on the photo, and display them online. If you are interested, check out his SnapStory1ooo page here.

Prompt 26: Soul Food

What did you eat this year that you will never forget? What went into your mouth & touched your soul?

(Author: Elise Marie Collins)

{Future tool: Sark’s MicroMOVEment Support Sheets. For the next 6 days as you round out your year, we’ll share one tool each day to help you plan your year ahead.}

I love food. I love cooking as well as eating. But when it comes to soul food, I’m inclined to think what really matters is who you share the food with, because that person or those people can make the dining more enjoyable and the food will be more memorable if not tastier.

What do you think?

In any case, sharing food can be what I’ll do more next year.

Prompt 27: Ordinary Joy

Our most profound joy is often experienced during ordinary moments. What was one of your most joyful ordinary moments this year?

(Author: Brené Brown)

{Future tool: Tara Mohr’s The Next Steps After Vision… For the next 5 days as you round out your year, we’ll share one tool each day to help you plan your year ahead.

I’m grateful that my life is filled with such joyful moments. I can pretty much be happy and feel joyful about being able to breathe.

I practice Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and choking techniques are part of the core techniques of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. So, when I’m good, I choke others. But when I’m playing with people stronger than me, I get choked and I tap.

Since I practice this style of martial arts and choking has become an ordinary thing for me, it didn’t occur to me how people rarely gets choked in their daily lives. If you practice yoga or something that teaches you the importance of breathing, you know breathing gives you positive effects. But do you know how amazing it is that you can breathe? You will know, if you’ve been in a situation where you can’t breathe even if you want to.

This very simple realization that I got by reflecting on what I practice makes me appreciate the fact that I can breathe. It’s joyful.

If you want to be able to appreciate these tiny moments more, be curious about what’s happening around you. Also, it helps to imagine what would happen if you couldn’t experience those moments at all.

This prompt’s author Brené Brown gave a great talk for TEDxHuston. This talk is one of my favorite talks that I’ve ever listened to. Make sure to check it out (I wrote a post in relation to her talk. Go to that post and scroll down to the bottom of the post for a clip of the talk.)

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What’s your thoughts on these prompts? Tell me, because I’m curious. If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with your friends by clicking the like button or the tweet button below. You can subscribe to this blog via RSS or e-mail, too. I’m looking forward to connecting with you!

Photo: Saitama-Rama

Cheshire Cat and 3 lessons of the year

This post will answer the prompts 23 (New Name) and 24 (Everything’s OK)  of Reverb10. Join us and reflect on your year 2010…

Prompt 23: New Name

Let’s meet again, for the first time. If you could introduce yourself to strangers by another name for just one day, what would it be and why?

(Author: Becca Wilcott)

{Future tool: Chris Guillebeau’s How to Conduct Your Own Annual Review. For the next 9 days as you round out your year, we’ll share one tool each day to help you plan your year ahead.}

Hi, my name is… Cheshire Cat. There’s already a group of people who refer to me as Cat. I believe the reason why they call me Cat is because my name is too long for them, even though Masa, the shortened version of my name Masafumi, has only two syllables. ‘Cat’ has only one syllable. So, I can understand they are desperate in saving their breath. If that’s not the reason, I bet it’s because I look like Cheshire Cat from the famous Alice in Wonderland. I can smile and disappear, leaving only the smile in the air.

But why would I want to use it as my new name?

Perhaps it’s because I want to be a representation of curiosity. Curiosity is what makes the cat’s life awesome. It doesn’t kill the cat. Also, I want to be able to disappear while leaving my smiles out there. I want to ask you delightful questions. I will do them in the new year. My new year will be a year of curiosity.

Prompt 24: Everything’s OK

What was the best moment that could serve as proof that everything is going to be alright? And how will you incorporate that discovery into the year ahead?

(Author: Kate Inglis)

{Future tool: Gwen Bell – How to Create Your Personal Manifesto. For the next 8 days as you round out your year, we’ll share one tool each day to help you plan your year ahead.}

I can’t think of any single moment that would apply to this prompt. However, I can think of some lessons that I learnt from living in the moment. Let me mention three.

  1. Each step gets me closer to the top. I climbed Mt. Fuji, the tallest mountain in Japan, in August. It was raining hard. Although it was still climbable and not life threatening at least until we got to the top, later on I heard that even expert climbers thought it was a bad condition. Even in such a bad condition, however, each step got me closer to the top of the mountain. It’s a great lesson to apply to life in general as well. What’s small enough a step you can take to get to where you want to go? Figure it out, and take that step.
  2. I have enough resources. I’ve mentioned in previous posts, but working on the Artist’s Way was valuable in the sense that I realized I have enough resources already if I change the way of thinking. What you have doesn’t change by changing the way you think. However, if you look at it from the abundant mentality rather than the scarcity mentality, you are likely to realize that you do have enough. Is the cup half full or half empty?
  3. It’s great to wake up. Things like traveling to save money and realizing that I could travel to Latin America mostly by land from the USA were big shifts of thinking for me. It’s similar to #2 in the sense that it’s about looking at things from another perspective. In the moments when those realizations hit me, it feels like waking up in the sunlight. It’s amazing to know that you can turn your dreams into reality, by simply waking up and figuring out how to make them happen. (Hint: Throw away assumptions that you can’t do this or that, at least unless you actually do think about some ways to make it happen.)

Vision Board

Prompt 23 links to Gwen Bell’s phenomenal post on making your own manifesto. I especially recommend you to make your vision map. It’s a great way to visualize your dreams by making a collage of pictures that remind you of your dreams. I made my first vision map with Cheney of everyonebutsix.com at Tilley’s Divine Cafe in Canberra, Australia. We had a great time making vision maps together.

By the way, Gwen suggests cutting out photos from magazines, but I prefer to search images online and use them for a vision map. You might lose the joy of running into random photos in magazines this way, but you are more likely to find photos you actually want to use and in alignment with your vision too.

If you are based in or near Tokyo, you might be interested in Soness’s workshops. She runs workshops on how to make a vision map according to Feng Shui principles. If you find Feng Shui appealing, you know who to get in touch with. Her website is here.

I will be making another vision map before the end of the year and it will be fun. I want a new reminder for things I want to achieve in 2011! I feel like I’m accelerating now and I believe I am indeed. I know how I’m going to make my 2011 a great year, and that feels terrific.

How about you? What do you want to do in 2011?

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What’s your thoughts on these prompts? Tell me, because I’m curious. If you enjoyed reading this post, please share it with your friends by clicking the like button or the tweet button below. You can subscribe to this blog via RSS or e-mail, too. I’m looking forward to connecting with you!

Photo: Chris Halderman