How To Deepen Your Love For Life
By Leo Gura - November 17, 2014 | 39 Comments
A powerful exercise to help you get re-connected with your passion for life.
Hey, this is Leo from Actualized.org, and in this video I want to talk about how to cultivate a deeper love for life.
What do you love about life? This is the basic and most essential question that I have for you in my video up there, How To Deepen Your Love For Life, where you can take a look at the things that you can do to make you feel more connected to your life.
The Word Life
Life is a beautiful thing. Are you in touch with that? It is one thing to know this intellectually, but another thing to actually be in touch with it. I lose track of this myself, which got me thinking and led me to the idea of making this video.
Think about the word life for a second. To me, the word life is a sacred word. I get a sense that most people use this word in a very mundane way, such as “Oh, this is my life,” or “We’re living the life.” Sometimes, I use this word like that as well.
To me, life is also very synonymous with the word reality. I love this word! That’s a really sacred word. Usually, when people talk about reality, they don’t talk about it nearly as often as they do about life. They also don’t take it with that same sense of seriousness and reverence that they should take it with.
Reality is the ultimate Matrix that we are living in. We live in this thing that is our reality, but it is also life. They are synonymous things. It’s amazing when you think what this reality actually is. It’s one thing to ask yourself “What’s this object over here — a car,” or “What’s that over there — a tree.”
Those can be very fascinating objects to study. However, the most fascinating object of all is just the matrix or collection of all objects which is reality and life. Life is wondrous, magical, mysterious, grandiose, complex, mind blowing and baffling! Sometimes, we have these moments in our lives when we are very connected to this. That’s when we feel very spiritual.
When people talk about spirituality, they usually mean a connection to a kind of eternal truth. It’s nothing religious, but just a connection to an idea about how amazing our life and reality really is. For example, you get this sense when you’re looking at a beautiful sunset, visiting the Grand Canyon, out somewhere in nature or when you’re having some other kind of peak experience in your life.
You feel very connected to reality, as though you’re part of it. You also feel as though it’s very beautiful and that it doesn’t need to be changed in any way. Many of us spend a lot of our time in life going around and trying to change life and reality. I am guilty of this as well. You have to watch yourself with this and make sure that you’re not going overboard with such activities.
People who are high achievers and who love self-improvement and self-actualization want to get up and change the entire world. Sometimes, they forget that the world is pretty amazing exactly the way it is.
The List Exercise
What I have for you here is a very simple exercise. Pull out a piece of paper and pen and sit down. You’re going to write down ten items on this list. The question for the list is: what are the top ten things that you love most about life?
Pause the video and write your things down. Take as much time as you need. Return to the video after you have completed your list. This exercise can be very revealing. It is similar to a gratitude exercise, except that it’s a little bit different.
This exercise doesn’t ask you what you are grateful for, but what you love the most about life. Be careful while you’re answering this. Do not answer for someone else. You are not answering for your family, the way that you were raised, for the religious group that you are a part of, for your school, boss or company that you work for. You are answering this for yourself and it is sometimes difficult to separate this.
You have to separate yourself from all the other social conditioning that you have been fed for your entire life. This exercise is different from a gratitude exercise because when people have something to be grateful for, they usually answer “I’m grateful for my parents, nice childhood, house that I live in, health,” and similar things. This is good, gratitude is a great exercise and I have made some videos on this topic.
This exercise is different. It asks you what you really love about life. What are the top ten things? Pause the video, go answer the list and then come back. I am going to share my list with you and give you some insight.
The Top Ten Things You Love About Life
Doing these kinds of exercises is how practical personal development is done. However, sitting down and watching videos all day is not going to be enough for you to get the results that you want. If you are serious about self-actualizing, you have to start to get active. Do exercises, read books and when you are reading books, do exercises that practice these things.
These exercises seem simple. Sometimes it seems like you know what you would write down and then you don’t write anything down. This is because you actually don’t know what to write. I just did this exercise recently and I was surprised with the list that I came up with.
I am a self-aware person. I have done a lot of very deliberate self-awareness exercises for the last couple of years to help bring that up from my subconscious part into my consciousness. Articulating it into words is important. Sometimes, you can have revelations as you do this. Here is my list, and you can compare it to yours.
I wanted you to do your exercise first so that my list doesn’t cloud your judgment or give you a biased result. Make sure you do the exercise before you proceed.
One of the things I really appreciate and love about life is color and vision. I love interacting with life through color. The way vision works is amazing, as well as perception. This also goes into appreciation of art.
I also love art history and graphic design. I did a lot of logo designing in the past and I’m also a good web front end developer. This is very satisfying to me. Colors are also very mysterious to me: what are they and where do they come from?
Besides my visual senses, one of the most profound ways that I can interact with reality is using my mind. I use my ability to analyze, look and see how things interconnect. I love drawing connections between different ideas, subjects and concepts.
This is like spiritual work to me, because when I can connect with more than one idea, it’s as though I’m discovering reality. This is amazing because what else is there, but reality? Reality is the ultimate thing. This is sacred to me. A lot of my love for life comes from this.
I love doing work and accomplishing something through effort. I love the feeling of working really hard towards something and succeeding at it. I don’t always succeed. However, when I kill it in the gym, read a couple of amazing books, clean up my diet, make a really great video or some other type of creative work like that, it makes me feel amazing.
When I produce something it makes me feel almost like giving birth. This is also a sacred thing. I get to give birth to all of these different things and ideas.
I love to sit down, organize my notes and have big plans for the future. This is really aspiring. I love being connected with reality. This is a feeling of contemplation. Have you ever felt this?
I sometimes get this feeling when I’m driving my car somewhere on a long road trip. I’m driving for hours, I’m by myself and there is no one to talk to. There are no emails. Nothing is there, except me and the empty road. There are no distractions.
I get into this very contemplative mood. I think about larger things, the big picture of my life, my past and I’m reflecting or recollection. I’m also drawing connections between ideas. This is a very solemn mood and I love that. This is one of the greatest feelings in life.
I love being productive and creative throughout my whole day. I love to get all the stuff done! I also love being creative, especially when there is something that needs to be put together or constructed in some way. I love that I get to be creative in life.
Another item on my list is sex. This is amazing. I enjoy sex more than some other people do. The way that I talk to my friends about their opinions on sex makes me feel like my enjoyment of it is very different and not as rich for them.
I love making a woman orgasm. I love that deep connection in sex, as well as having an orgasm inside of a woman. This is the most amazing feeling.
I love deep and intellectual conversations, but I don’t have that many of them. I don’t find people with whom I can have such conversations. This is often because of my antisocial nature. This is something I can work on.
When I find someone that I can have a really nice, deep and nuanced conversation with about life or something similar, I find that to be very satisfying.
I love to organize stuff and find tools, as well as working on my workflow to make everything in my life more efficient. I also love self-improvement, anything that will improve my person, body and mind.
I love the feeling of being warm and cozy. I love comfortable lying in bed or on a couch with a blanket. I also like to cuddle with someone. The feeling of warmth on my body is really satisfying. I love that about life!
These were my ten things, what are yours?
You can compare your list with mine. Maybe some of these things are similar to your items. Don’t let me dissuade you from your own unique things that you love about life. Perhaps I gave you some genuine reminders, some things that you forgot. Everyone’s list should be fairly unique.
What to do with your list now that you have one? There are a couple of questions that you should now ask yourself to get more value out of this exercise. Just by writing this stuff down, you should have already felt a little bit more connected to life, reality and your higher self.
Perhaps some insights and epiphanies already came out for you. These questions will bring out a few more insights. Sit down and look at your list. How much of your time is going to each one of these ten things in your life on a regular basis?
For example, let’s say that one of your items is understanding reality and thinking about concepts. How much time in a week do you spend doing that? What kind of activities do you do? Is it a lot or a little?
How many hours do you spend on each item on your list in a week? Go down your entire list and be honest with yourself about the time that you invest in each item on a regular basis. After you have answered this, you are going to ask yourself another question.
How aligned are your career and current job with your items from the list? Is the job that you are currently doing aligned with at least three items on your list? Is it aligned with only one? Perhaps it isn’t aligned with any of the items on your list.
This can be tough to admit. For most of you, you’re lucky if you have at least one item on the list that is actually aligned with your current career. Most people will probably have zero items aligned to their current career.
This is a big problem. This is also why I am so passionate about life purpose. I have other videos in which I talk about life purpose.
I want you to become more aware of how much alignment or misalignment there is between your work and the stuff that you love the most about life. If there is a huge gap there, how are you going to become happy and successful?
You cannot become happy because all of the things that make you happy are on this list. By definition, your job is not there because you say it isn’t. This is a huge misalignment!
If you’re trying to justify this to yourself by saying that your job is getting you money and success, you are wrong. It is getting you some money and some success. If your job was aligned with the things you actually love doing, you would have plenty of long term success. Perhaps you wouldn’t have short term success, but long term success would definitely occur.
This is because your passion comes from these items. If you are doing anything outside of this list, you might consider cutting that out of your life. Why would you continue? Life is short as it is, so try to do the stuff that’s on your list.
I want you to ask yourself another question. How well are your hobbies and relationships aligned with the items on your list? Are they somehow different from the stuff on your list? If the answer is yes, then you have to change things in your life.
If you see any misalignments, then you are going to have to change this. This is something that isn’t going to change in one day or a week. It might take you several years. In order to get this process going, you’re going to have to be honest with yourself.
Many people aren’t honest with themselves. It was really hard for me to realize some of my misalignments. Five years ago, I recognized them and it was tough for me to admit this. I had to work for years and put a lot of labor and money into fixing these misalignments. I now have many of these things aligned because I have worked hard on this and my life feels so much better after these alignments have taken place.
Honor The List
The last thing that I want you to do is to sit down next to your list and ask yourself for each item on it the following question: how can I honor these activities more in my life? For example, thinking about concepts and understanding reality better is something really important for me.
How can I honor that more? One of the things that I’ve been slacking off on lately and that I know I should be doing is journaling more. I should be jotting down my thoughts and notes. That feels really good and it helps me clarify things on paper in a way that I can’t in my own mind.
Journaling helps me draw connections and deliver more content to you to shoot my videos. When I write things down, they don’t get lost. I can then come and discuss them here. Journaling is an actual item for me which I need to develop more. What do you need to honor more?
For example, let us say that another one of your list items is to love color and vision the way that I do. I don’t spend nearly enough time appreciating art or studying graphics the way that I used to in the past. There is this game on iPad that I want to play and it has amazing visuals.
I’ve been holding off on playing because I don’t have an iPad anymore. I was thinking that I should probably go out and get a new iPad and play the game. Looking at those visuals might just give me interesting ideas which satisfy me on a creative level. Looking at beautiful graphics or art is a source of inspiration for me.
I want you to come up with ideas like this. They don’t have to be massive. It is better to start small. Begin with a couple of very little and practical things that you could maybe do right now. Try a little change that would honor your list items a little bit more. Remember that after you finish your list you actually have to go out there and do it.
This is Leo, I’m signing off. This was how to love your life a little bit more. This is the kind of activity you should be doing quarterly or at least on an annual basis. Make sure that you are reconnecting because it is easy to get lost nowadays in the mundaneness of life.
Go ahead, post me your comments. Like this, share this. I really want your comments because I look at the comments, I read all of them and it gives me ideas for new videos to shoot. I try to respond to the ones I can. Post this on Facebook, share it with your friends so that this message spreads around.
Post some comments, I love to really use it as feedback to help me improve my videos. Of course, go ahead and check out Actualized.org, where we’ve got a free newsletter you can sign up to. We’ve got some free, amazing, exclusive bonuses. Stay tuned for more great videos on how to improve yourself.