There’s that old question that is supposed to help you get at what it is in life you really want to be doing. You know the one: What would you do if money were not a problem? There’s a variation on it where success is guaranteed.
A few years ago, I came across another question: What would you do even if you knew you would never succeed? This was a good one for me. My mind tried to reject it and persisted in resisting it. Why do anything if you can’t be successful at it?
But it planted a seed and gave me a new way to look at the things I want to do in the lifetime that I’m given. It’s helped me to find my way back to doing things for the simple pleasure of them and not because they fit into some larger scheme for my life and my career(s).
These questions though still lack for me what helps me really get to what it is I want to do in that larger scheme, because I’m a person that gets bored far too easily and a person that has to satisfy (more or less equally) the creative and the logical parts of her brain. Those questions focus on utopias or ideals, the being there, not the getting there. And that frame doesn’t work for me.
So I’m playing around with a new question.
What do I want to spend my time practicing?
This question focuses on process. For me, it doesn’t ignore that it might be more than one thing. It doesn’t focus on competition, which is something that both drives me to do and blocks me from the things I want to do.
The older I get, the more I understand that all of life is a matter of practice. And where you practice is where you will grow. It is where you will get good within your ability to be good at it. It is what makes you able to stretch yourself beyond what you think you can do.
Because I want to know what I can do. I want to be good. My good.
What, dear readers, do you want to spend your time practicing?