There seem to be so many things I could do- my brain, time and creativity seem to be stretched to accommodate everyone and everything. I love doing lots but that is not necessarily productive or good- especially for my health and sanity. So when I was feeling very tired and desperate from ‘constant doing’, I found some great advice which I would like to share.
This comes from the philosophy teacher of Tal Ben-Shahar, who has written a bestseller called ‘Happier’ and runs an eponymous course at Harvard University. This teacher, Ohad Ramin, told him when he was a young graduate, “Life is short. In choosing a path make sure you first identify those things that you can do. Out of those, select the ones that you want to do. Then, reduce your choice further by zooming on what you really want to do. Finally select those things that you really, really want to do– and do them!”
This rang a bell for me when I started the journey of following my heart. I really had to edit out many things in order to concentrate on things that mattered to me and really, really want to do. In many ways, the way we mature in our lives consist of this constant editing, following our hearts and becoming happier as a result.
I am of the sensitive kind and try to please others (as I am sure most of us do). Most of my life I have followed other people’s hearts. Now recently I have taken the step of following my own heart and starting writing this blog to give myself some courage and lift.
I read this somewhere- when one is 18, one worries constantly about what others think of them; when one turns 40 one does not care what others think of them and when one is 60, one realises that no one was thinking of them all along! Well, wouldn’t we be all the more wiser and true to ourselves if we only followed the ’60 rule’. I think some of us stay at age 40 or even 18 all our lives! It is not easy but we can start today to be ’60’, no matter what our age.
‘Being 60’ a courageous step- I sometimes feel quite fearful about the steps I have taken recently in my professional and private life but most of the time I feel so happy doing what I have always wanted to do. I wish I had started earlier but at least I have started this journey before the age of 60 anyway, before it is too late. But even if you are 60, don’t worry or have regrets, it is never too late- just start today! As Daisaku Ikeda says,”It is not about how others are or how society is. The most important thing is to ask yourself, “What should I do?” and “What can I do?” One who stands up with moral courage and conviction can change society and create waves of transformation around the world.”