I recently read Marshall Goldsmith’s latest book, The Earned Life. I also gave a presentation on the book to my Mastermind group in Whistler for our annual conference.
The Earned Life is an excellent book that describes how our lives toggle back and forth between two emotional polarities, fulfillment and regret. Too many of us spend our time focused on regret and end up not living the life we could live of being fulfilled.
Internal fulfillment has six-factors according to Marshall Goldsmith:
Purpose: What is our purpose in life? Do we have a purpose?
Meaning: How do we define meaning for us?
Achievement: What do we want to achieve in our lifetime?
Relationships: How do we improve our relationships with others?
Engagement: How can we be more fully engaged daily?
Happiness: The previous five factors when focused upon lead to happiness.
According to Mr. Goldsmith, “the reward for living an earned life is being engaged in the process of constantly earning such a life.” It will not happen unless we are intentionally focused in getting results. To achieve an earned life, we must be fully engaged in the six principles.
One of the most impactful thoughts was what the Buddha said. “With each breath we experience, a new us is created and the past us vanishes.” Whatever happens in our lives, in the next breath, the next day or the next year will be experienced by a different you, the future you. The concept is that when we make mistakes in life, they were made by the previous us and the present us did not make those mistakes, so we shouldn’t torture ourselves but should let it go and learn from the previous us.
In my own life, I have made numerous mistakes and when I did, I tried to take the time to learn the lesson that was to be learned so that I did not repeat the same mistake again. I have to say that taking this approach, I am not the same person I was and continue to evolve and grow because I have purpose and meaning in my life. I have things I want to achieve, and I am fully engaged to do so. I need to work on improving my relationships with others, which I am aware of, and I find by working on these things every day, I have found a level of happiness about life each day. I decided years ago that I wanted to be the best me, I could possibly be, mentally, professionally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. It takes intention, focus and engagement but is worth the effort to be a different person today, than I was yesterday.
Marshall Goldsmith’s book, The Earned Life, is available on Amazon.