What have you done with your life? If you’re a recent college grad, you’ve probably considered this and been asked a couple dozen times “what are you going to do with your life” in the past few weeks (high school grads have another couple weeks to go yet). It’s a question all of us should ask though, whether we’re graduating, just lost our job, are at a mid life point, or are content with where we are.
Recently I asked what kind of contribution are you making in life? Some people sputter when they are asked about the future, some brush it off and say they’ll think about it later, others have a plan, and still others flatly deny the need to think about it. The truth is though, the only way you will have a future you’ll be proud to look back on on your death bed or pass on to your grandchildren, is by being proactive and making decisions that will shape a future you’ll be proud of.
You can look back at your past and see where you should go for the future. Some people look at their past and are immediately crippled by it. They become unable to make new decisions or live from a new perspective. Others are empowered by their past and decide that their past will be a stepping stone to their future. You can learn from your past by taking time to consider what you can learn from successes, lessons and failures. But don’t linger too long on them, life is best lived moving forward from the past, not stopping to gaze at the past so long that you’ve missed the future.
You can look at the past lives of others and see where those choices led them. We’re fortunate enough to be able to see other people’s lives, learn from them and make different, or similar, choices depending on if we like the result they got or not. We can look at great leaders from the past, we can learn from our parents, our siblings, our children, our friends, our coworkers and even from those who challenge us on a daily basis. You can learn from what they’ve chosen in life and use those lessons to help guide your decisions.
You have a choice about what your future is. Take actions that will bring you to the future you want. Share your thoughts, and questions, below.