I’ve long since given up on considering the question, “What is the meaning of life?”
In my opinion, life doesn’t have an inherent meaning – it’s up to me to give life meaning. But a similar question that I do wrestle with is, “What do I want out of life?”
That’s a pretty loaded question.
My biggest issue is that it’s also a pretty presumptuous thing to try and answer.
Well I’d like to create loving, lasting relationships that contribute to a full career of creating a body of work while being completely present with my family.
Not a bad answer, right?
But the problem is, any answer I think up to this question presumes a lot of time. My timeframe is completely unknown and no amount of time is guaranteed.
Consider someone who says, “I want to open a shop and sell custom made furniture” but has yet to take the first step of creating pieces in her free time as practice.
I’m convinced that drastic, life-changing decisions are pretty rare. Rather, to get to any destination, it’s about taking the next step in that direction. Often the step is small, sometimes the step is backwards, but it’s all about the aggregate trend in that direction.
If you ask yourself what you want out of life, and you’re not trending in the direction of your answer, you’re really taking a gamble.
Maybe the question only needs to serve as this calibration and trigger for assessment. It is arguably equally short-sighted to consider, “What do I want out of today?” every day.
We don’t have a lot of time. Keep trending in the right direction.