My Vibrant Life Now (You Can Have It Too!)

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Living The Big Stuff

My Vibrant Life Now (You Can Have It Too!)

There’s a much younger conversation going on in my head than my 52 years would suggest. My thoughts scream: I’m not done yet! I’m still so vibrant!  (And I’m sure you’re not done yet, either!)  Like you, I’ve lived an incredibly rich life already.  I’ve raised my kids. They are both college graduates.

They have left the nest and temporarily arrived home again. I now have three–yes, THREE–grandkids. (I’m Nana! Not Gramma!)  I visit my father-in-law, who is nearing the end of his life and who reminds me to live mine fully while I have my health.  I feel blessed that both my parents are alive and healthy.

I’ve loved deeply.

I’ve lost and grieved greatly.

I’ve made the long road home–from grief to gratitude.

And yes, I can now say with a healed heart that it truly is better to have loved deeply and lost than to never have loved that way at all.

That “love,” like so many other amazing memories, is imprinted on my soul to push me forward into the next chapter, into my next love affair–with life, and my most vibrant life yet.

I was recently working with a coaching client, Maureen, who was struggling with feeling redundant in her career. I was curious that if she felt this way at work, how did she feel about the rest of her life? I asked her questions about all sorts of things, including her relationship with her husband and kids.

Turns out she’s feeling redundant in all areas of her life–not just her career. She and her husband had not been on a “date” night in over a year, and they hadn’t had sex, either. I suggested both would do a world of good and would ignite feelings of passion and engagement.

When you ignite one area, it tends to feed and nourish your enthusiasm so you’re vibrant in other areas of your life

I asked her why she was unhappy with her job, and it turns out, she’s lacking engagement at work and feeling guilt about it. So, I suggested she sit down and brainstorm about how she could be mindful at work. I define “mindful” to mean training your mind to be full of the present moment. When we are engaged in the present moment, then we feel as though life has slowed down. We then feel present to our lives, and each moment holds more meaning, feeling more vibrant in the moment.

My husband Richard Carlson said, “If you slow down long enough, happiness might just catch up to you.”

The other thing I asked Maureen was, “What do you do for fun?” She answered the question with a question: “Fun?” We both laughed, even though the implications were not funny at all.

The good news is anyone can wake up to life at any time!

Here’s three ways you can wake up to live a more vibrant life:

1. Be mindfully engaged in your life.
Science proves that people are most engaged while having sex, but we have the choice to be fully engaged in every moment by bringing a higher level of mindfulness to daily life and training our minds and bodies to be present and alive. (By all means, have more sex, too.) Practice noticing the sky and taking three or four deep breaths as you do so. Go on a walk and notice all that’s surrounding the path: the crunching of leaves, the wind on your face, how it feels to place your feet one in front of the other. Breathe deeply, feeling your body.

2. Ignite your passion and purpose to create a life of meaning.
Rediscovering what makes your heart sing is what it means to feel passion. Sometimes, we have to look back to the past and remember those “heart sing” things that we might have left behind in order to live a “responsible” life, or an “efficient” life. Ask yourself the question: What would light you up, smiling ear to ear, if you had no barriers of time or money or circumstance standing in your way? What is it you love? Just behind your passion is your purpose, and knowing your purpose leads to living a fulfilling life of meaning.

3. You must know what your fun factor is.
When you think of having fun, what are you doing? Do MORE of that! You know those things you would mark on a dating profile if you had to? Do you like to hike, dine out, travel, do yoga, mountain bike? Make a list and make it a point to do at least three of these things that are your fun factors each week. Schedule time on your calendar for them, and then keep the appointment. (For couples: date night is a MUST!!) Whatever it is that means fun to you, make sure you are blocking out time daily and weekly to do those things that add pleasure to your life. Pleasure is as important as doing work that you love; sometimes, if you’re as lucky as I am, those are one and the same!

As you become more mindful in your everyday life, engaged in your activities and relationships while increasing your fun and rediscovering what lights you up, your life will feel richer and more meaningful. You will awaken to feel more passion and joy to live your most vibrant life yet!

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