Life is half over before we know what it is – George Herbert
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My story begins one Saturday around 2 pm while I was lying on the couch. I still had not shaved or showered. I got up to go get another Mountain Dew and some junk food. I don’t know what caused the epiphany but that’s when it hit me…”What the hell am I doing?”
Mirror, mirror on the wall…
I took a hard look at myself in the mirror and I was disgusted. I had always been a “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” kind of guy, but since the divorce I didn’t really care. I realized I had all the symptoms of depression.
- I had quit working out.
- I was gaining weight and getting soft.
- My diet was horrible.
- I hardly ever left the house.
- It had been nearly 2 yrs since the divorce and still, I had not dated.
Had I fallen prey to the “Big D”?
I’ve always thought depression was a dirty word. Something that just wasn’t talked about. I’ve witnessed first hand the devastating effects it can have on the individual and the family.
Bottom line: It doesn’t really matter if I had clinical depression or not. My life sucked and I finally got off my butt did something about it.
Initially, I went back to what I refer to as my “base” or “foundation”. I have exercised most of my life and been a reader or listener of audiobooks. So I started back with basic workouts and listening to 3-4 audiobooks each month.
That’s how I stumbled across Don Miller’s, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years. Miller talks about life being a story and makes you question yourself, “Are you living a good story? One worth reading?”
My answer was an immediate, “NO!” My life was mundane, boring and without any inspiration. I didn’t like the story I was telling.
The good news? You can change your story. I had to accept the fact that I was right where I had allowed myself to be. If I was unhappy with that, it was up to me to change it.
Live a story worth telling others about.
After listening to the audiobook is when I decided to live more intentionally every day in order to Live a Better Story.
So what does living a better story look like?
Does it mean you find your million dollar idea and live rich happily ever after? Not exactly. It really has nothing to do with money as a measure of success.
For me, my greatest storylines over the past year has been in the area of relationships. Making a difference in the lives of others and allowing them to make a difference in yours. Pouring myself out solely for their benefit with no hidden agendas. Just because I wanted to. It feels good.
I now have stories to tell about traveling, backpacking, mountain biking, photography, running 5K’s with my kids and the stories keep coming.
Every day there is a way to live a better story. Each day starts with a blank page.
I can’t tell you to do steps 1, 2, 3 and your story will be better. Only you know what and how you can have the biggest impact.
Start with where you are. If someone wrote your biography…would anybody want to read it?
If not, you can change it. Starting today.