where are you heading

Last night Greg asked me: “Where are you heading?” Not: How have things been? Or: What’s been going on? But: Where are you heading?

Between bites of chili and sips of wine, at some point, a line from Howard Thurman dropped into the conversation: “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”

I remember back in the early aughts, when I first encountered Thurman’s wisdom, I thought it was about what sort of occupation a person should pursue. And it might be that for some. But I see now that not everyone has the privilege of selecting their employment according to what brings them joy. I also see now that even life-giving work has its days of doldrum and frustration.

Here’s the thing: Coming alive isn’t about finding a profession that satisfies at every turn. It’s about giving yourself permission, in the various parts of your life, for your joy to take up space. 

In the midst of the complexity of your work, your relationships, and the other earthly spaces you inhabit, I hope you spend time today asking: How do I bring my wild and loving life into this moment? I suspect that most of us don’t need help feeling more obligated, but we could use a boost of permission to feel more alive.