How do you live a meaningful life?
According to Ron Irvine in his book, “A Meaningful Life,” when you do what you love to do, and share it with the world, you will be. Irvine’s ideas are largely based upon the work of Victor Frankl, an Austrian psychiatrist and Auschwitz survivor, who founded the psychotherapeutic method known as logotherapy, was interested in the search for meaning in life as a therapeutic “antidote” for what ails humanity, our kind of existential angst that we all must deal with.
His survival through the most extreme circumstances coupled with his extraordinary capacities as a human being led him to the conclusion that no matter what we are faced with, we all retain the ultimate freedom: The choice to determine our own responses to any given situation.
He also concluded that we all are here with a mission to fulfil and that mission is greater than ourselves. Life requires us to discover what that mission is and we find it by going within, to discover who we really are and what we have to offer in the world.
“We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms —to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances.”
What a humbling thought.
Frankl also said:
“A thought transfixed me: for the first time in my life I saw the truth as it is set into song by so many poets, proclaimed as the final wisdom by so many thinkers. The truth that love is the ultimate and the highest goal to which man can aspire. Then I grasped the meaning of the greatest secret that human poetry and human thought and belief have to impart: The salvation of man is through love and is love.”
Following this logic, it makes perfect sense to simply discover what you love to do, and then, to do it. In a nutshell, just be yourself! Does it sound too good to be true? You are born uniquely you. No one else can be you and have the priceless gifts that you carry.
If you are beset with challenges in life, know that as Frankl again said, we are directed towards our gifts through suffering. If you don’t feel you have anything to offer, don’t worry.
The formula is simple:
You just have to do what you love! Notice times in your life when you feel elevated, uplifted, joyful, and free. What do you find you are you doing? That is where to focus more of yourself and your energy!
We are all born with original giftedness! Then as we grow up, we forget who we are. It is our job to “remember” ourselves and our original gifts then bring them forward to offer to the world.
To discover who we really are, to cultivate ourselves and what we love to do, and then to share it with others.
What a wonderful and joyful task we are all given and how joyful it is to know that this is our purpose in life!
Simple, profound and above all, FUN!
Go out and be yourself! Do what you love and then do more of it. Then share your gifts that you discover along the way with others. In this way, you cannot help but live a meaningful life.