Do you have a “north star” or “distant shore,” some sort of high-level aspiration that sums up all of your day-to-day goals and activities…also known as “the meaning of life?”
One of the key tenets of Positive Psychology is possessing a deep sense of meaning in life. Viktor Frankl’s book Man’s Search for Meaning was a forerunner of the positivity movement spearheaded in recent decades by Martin Seligman. Frankl shares insights from years in a Holocaust concentration camp, and inspires readers to persevere through even the most discouraging of circumstances by having something big and worthwhile to strive after.
I’m constantly updating my personal and professional goals, and always seeking to ensure synergy between the two. Something I added last week to the very top of my personal goal page is my “north star,” the legacy I’m seeking to leave as a person and professional. I’m not “there” yet, and I certainly have not consistently lived this legacy—but it’s the higher place toward which I now channel all of my energies, ambitions and prayers.
Here it is, what I want to be remembered for and certainly known for in the present time:
John Michael De Marco was a learner of people, places and ideas, who persevered through inauthentic moments to fully embrace life’s intellectual, emotional, spiritual and physical dimensions. He was a writer, coach, facilitator and spiritual leader; a loving life partner and a loving father. John was a reliable, actively listening friend, peer and servant who found creative and compassionate ways to stretch people’s thinking and inspire them to action toward a more fulfilling life of unfolding consciousness
Life often just “happens” to many of us. There’s been too many seasons where I’ve allowed it to happen to me, and I’ve been reactive in response. Here in my 40s, I can no longer be immersed in such lack of authenticity or just rolling with the punches and hoping things turn out okay. I need an aspiration that’s big, bold and hard to reach. Something meaningful. Something worth living for, toward which I apply the lessons and failures from the past and embrace the now with sustainable passion.
Okay, I’ve opened up and shared my “north star.” What’s yours?