So, a couple of days ago, I put this picture on my facebook wall. See, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about life, why I do the things I do, and if those motivations are truly reflective of where I am and how I think. Life, is not about churning your way through to the end. Life is a gift, just like the picture says, and it’s a not something you can buy, or one that full of possessions. For that kind of thing, look at for gift baskets.

Real life, peaceful and purposeful life is so much more than that. It’s paying attention to NOW. What are you doing and why are you doing it? How are you treating others and how are you treating yourself? And I have to admit, I do a lot better at treating others well than I do about treating myself well. But I’m getting better.

Some of that is about adding stuff and some of it is about subtracting stuff. One of the things I subtracted this week was the need and compulsion to get two undergraduate degrees at this time. Here’s what I realized as I was making my decision. Ok, I lie. I realized AFTER I made my choice. But the point is that I suddenly understood that one of the reasons I push myself so hard all.the.time. is some kind of irrational subconscious belief that if I was just excellent enough, my dad would come tell me how proud he was of me. Folks, that man has been dead for almost 33 years. He has been dead as long as he was alive. He is NOT going to tell me anything, ever again. And I have been trying to impress life into a dead man for far too long.

I’ve been doing the right stuff, but doing it toward the past instead of toward the future. Right action, wrong motivation. Big change in perspective, small change in course direction. Still on the tracks, but with a different fuel source….one that isn’t poisonous.