I was early taught to work as well as play;
My life has been one long, happy holiday -
Full of work, and full of play -
I dropped the worry on the way -
And God was good to me every day.
- John D. Rockefeller Sr.
What do you consider the most important thing in life for an individual to achieve happiness? Money? Job? Toys? I would urge you to delve deeper into your psyche. My answer to this questions is that purpose is the key to happiness.
If you have listened to some of my podcasts, then you will know that I believe time is our most important asset. "Time is the currency of life," I iterate as a maxim for myself. We cannot get more of it, and it is undefeated against life. While time is important, it is purpose that gives our time value. Valuable time equals joy (purpose) in life.
A fairly simple formula, with a more complicated integer factor. The integers are the events, activities, and interactions we involve ourselves in throughout a particular day or undefined time period.
Being able to spend this past year traveling, working, and doing several interviews gave me a perspective of being useful in life. I felt like my actions reached beyond just myself and affected the lives of others. The groups I have spoken with (young and old) along with the feedback I have received from my book bolstered the feelings inside me that my time was purposeful. 2022 was a success.
My time spent with NAVY vets was incredible. It felt good to be helping the exact right people in our country . . . the ones who protect us from all the crap in the world. I hope to increase it to more than one week a month in the coming year.
The days spent helping my father open up a second stem cell clinic on the east coast was wonderful. The work was both rewarding and special, being able to achieve along side a loved one. The health knowledge gained has been invaluable.
Hours spent making follow up calls for my cousin's (Stacey) real estate firm assisted her in moving her business forward. In turn, it put money in my pocket working remotely and gave meaning to the extra time I carved out to stay in contact with her home buyers. She is a huge success in Dallas and is using her financial vehicle to successfully enhance the lives of others in her circle.
The furniture restoration projects that Serrell and I did were certainly challenging, to say the least. But, after accomplishing a tough job, we were fulfilled by providing quality products to appreciative customers. Upcycling an old object is so much better than buying new stuff that was made in China.
Marketing my book and the mental health speaking engagements has been a grind, but well worth the effort. The feedback (both bad and good) has been rewarding. Even the strongest of us can use a boost in morale. I selfishly got more out of these interactions than the groups or individuals that I spoke with.
Finally, the past 12 months of travel was expensive! But, life experience is worth more than a new riding lawn mower or an extra day worked. So many times over the past year I dropped everything in an instant to make a short trip or take a few days to go to the beach. My bank account suffered for these excursions, but I decided to get around while I still had the energy and opportunity. Even though I am 46 now, I feel like I might have a little bit of Millennial in me, and I am OK with that.
These are my examples of purpose over the past year. My hope is that you use them to reflect on your own purpose and make your time valuable. Another year is behind us now while another is on the horizon. Imagine forward over the next chunk of time and envision yourself accomplishing all that you want. Remember, valuable time equals purpose in life. Make it count.
Take a listen to this interesting podcast that we recorded recently. I think you will find the undertone of purpose in it, and appreciate the joy it brings.
Happy New Year!