A to-live list is simply a collection of wishes, dreams, and moments of joy you want to experience in your life. It’s not just a bucket list, but also a collection of things you’d love to do more often. It helps you get excited about life while gently reminding you why you’re doing what you’re doing.
If you’ve been powering through to reach a goal and you’ve lost your passion on the way, this guide is for you.
How to connect with your liveliness to rediscover your why:
Realize that you’ve put yourself under a lot of pressure.
You wanted to reach your goal no matter what, so you’ve been a little harsh with yourself. If you realize that you wouldn’t force your best friend to do as much work as you’ve done, it’s time to acknowledge the truth.
Accept what is.
Forgive yourself for all the stress you’ve put on yourself. It happens to the best of us. Just know that you don’t have to feel stressed and tired all the time. There’s another way, which you will take from now on.
You can even meditate if you like. Put yourself in a state of mind where you can focus your creativity on the task at hand: writing your to-live list.
Write down all the things that would make you happy right now.
Write down the experiences you want to have, the big and the small. Write down little pieces of life that you want to create for yourself. This list doesn’t have to be complete. It’s supposed to give you an idea of the joys you could allow yourself to have and the things you believe make life worth living.
Read your to-live list out loud.
How does it make you feel? Do you get excited? Does it make you smile and give you a warm, tingly feeling in your belly? If yes, then it has fulfilled its purpose: to make you feel alive again.
Think about the goals you have been working toward.
Do they fit into the snippets of life you’ve just envisioned for yourself? If not, can you change them to fit your dreams and needs?
Take your time to plan how you can make your dreams a reality.
Some points may be easy to cross off your list, like munching your favorite cookies while watching an open fire. Others, like “do work I care about” might take longer to realize. Those are the dreams you want to have a plan for.
Revisit your list often, especially when you feel like you’ve lost your direction.
It will give you the focus you need to reconnect with your why and make your dreams a reality.
The to-live list is supposed to help you feel more alive and get you all fired up, both about your goals and dreams, and the everyday joys you can experience.
If you feel that what you’ve been working so hard for doesn’t fit into the life you want to live, imagine what the worst-case scenario would be if you were to drop that goal immediately. It might not be as bad as you think to change course. If you decide to keep moving forward, are there other ways to reduce the amount of work and stress related to it?
If you’ve rediscovered and reaffirmed your why in pursuing this goal, it should be a lot easier to put things into perspective now. You know that it’s worth it.
After I wrote my to-live list I didn’t have less work to do. But after reconnecting with the purpose behind my efforts, I had the strength to keep going and make my dream a reality—without feeling so overwhelmed.
About the Author
Iris is the Chief Writer at Bright Little Socks, a place for people who are brave enough to wear bright socks and dare to change the world. She wants to use her life as proof that it’s possible to live like you mean it and still put food on the table and pretty dresses in your closet. She tweets @BrightLilSocks.