My husband and I have milestone birthdays coming this year. We’ve spent the past year thinking “how do we want to live the rest of our lives?” In the process my husband came up with the concept of Core Life Desires, a few words that summarize what is most important to you and keeps your life on track for how you want it to be. It goes beyond Core Desired Feelings to get to the heart of what you really want out of life.
A lot of confusion and sadness occurs because people don’t really know what they want. They go after the goals and choices they believe they should go after or that they believe will make them happy. Often these ambitions have been derived from perceived family, church, and societal expectations and beliefs. But very few stop to check within themselves for answers and guidance to their life. The common mid-life crisis is a typical result of pursuing desires that really didn’t belong to you in the first place.
So how do you identify your Core Life Desires? You listen to yourself. Spend some time quietly listening to the core messages of your heart. You will feel in your heart what is true for you.
For example I originally put Relationships as one of my Core Life Desires, but when I checked in with myself I realized the core relationship was a relationship with myself not others. When I feel good about myself, my relationships, work, and prosperity naturally abound. But when I’m not happy with myself everything goes down the toilet.
My husband identified his Core Life Desires as Relationships, Health, and Presence. I identified my Core Life Desires as Wholeness, Health, and Happiness.
Here’s how the Core Life Desires work. Let’s say my husband’s colleague is being an asshole or he’s arguing with me. He can check in with himself, “Is this helping or hurting my Relationships?” and then make the necessary course corrections to achieve the type of relationships he desires.
The same goes for Health, a Core Life Desire we both chose. When we’re making food or activity choices we can check in “Will this improve or damage our Health?” This simple process helps us to get what we most want out of life.
I choose “Wholeness” as one of my Core Life Desires because I often feel fragmented, feel pulled in differing directions, and tend to censor or block what I think will meet with disapproval from others. But failing to be true to myself or share a complete person makes me less of a person and prevents me from giving 100% to my relationships, my work, and my life. I chose Wholeness as my Core Life Desire to help me stay congruent and give 100% to my life.
So what are your Core Life Desires? What is most important to you? I challenge you to identify 3 to 4 words that summarize what you want most out of your life and share them in the comments below.
Flickr photo by Demi-Brooke (cc) license
Carolyn Flynn Almendarez holds a Master’s degree in Counseling with additional studies in Nutrition and Holistic Health. She provides a unique blend of mind-body solutions to create health, happiness, and loving relationships. She is a strategist, problem-solver, and intuitive guide. She believes every woman deserves to feel beautiful, serene, and happy. She is committed to helping women create lives they love. She is the author of SMART Talk, Heal Your Grief, and Holiday Peace and Joy.
When you set your goals and New Year’s resolutions did you ask yourself, “How do I want to feel this year?”
When grown-ups asked you what you wanted to be when you grew up, did they also ask you how you wanted to feel when you grew up?
These may sound like silly questions, but Danielle Laporte, author of “The Desire Map” suggests that when we set goals and strive to fulfill dreams we are actually striving to fulfill a desired feeling, not a desired goal destination or achievement.
This is why you can reach a goal or desired accomplishment and still feel unsuccessful, unhappy, or unfulfilled. You reached the goal, but what you were “really seeking” is still missing.
She argues that we have goal setting backwards. Instead of starting with a goal and driving full force ahead to achieve it, we should start with the feelings we desire to feel and then create our world and our goals around the desired feelings.
Danielle Laporte shares her thoughts on letting your feelings and desires drive your goals in this interview with Marie Forleo:
To use your desired feelings to create your goals start by looking inside yourself and asking yourself, “How do I want to feel?”
For many of you this question may make you feel uncomfortable or leave an empty void in your mind and heart. There is nothing wrong with you if that is your experience.
Because the truth is, most of us have feeling gardens that have been trampled by well-meaning adults trying to groom us into the adults they thought we should be.
As a child how often were you told your laughter was too loud, or your giggles were inappropriate. Or told to wipe away your tears, and ‘chin up’ when you were feeling sad. Anger outbursts and temper-tantrums were surely met with glaring disdain and disapproval.
As good little children we quickly learned to suppress and subdue the expression of our feelings and transform into well-behaved goal driven adults.
So now I’m giving you permission to return to your inner garden and let those feeling flowers blossom.
Start by asking yourself, “What do I want?”. Then ask yourself, “Why do I want that?” and “How do I hope that will make me feel?”
Spend some time every day asking yourself, “How do I want to feel?”
Be patient with yourself as you explore your inner feelings and desires. Danielle said it took her five years to identify her core desired feelings.
Start with the feelings you identify now and then continue to probe and check-in with yourself as you re-grow your feelings garden. Your identified feelings may change as you get clearer at uncovering the core desires within you.
Once you have identified 3-5 core feelings then ask yourself, “What can I do today to create these feelings?”
Then ask yourself, “What do I need to do, have, or experience to have these feelings in my life?”
These two questions will help you to create a fulfilling life you love, both in the present and the future. You do not have to wait for the accomplishment of your goals to have a full and happy life.
Instead of working towards achieving goals and accomplishments you are now creating your life day by day.
My core desired feelings are:
What are your core desired feelings? Share in the comments below.
By Carolyn Almendarez