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I use the same measuring stick for everything--either it brings me joy or it doesn't. If something doesn't bring me joy, then it needs to be immediately changed or removed from my life. I've been carrying this big measuring stick for many years and quite frankly a number of things (people too) have been left behind because they did not quite measure up. I have made exceptions throughout the years and those exceptions have led to amazing learning experiences.
But now I am on the cusp of something extraordinary. How do I know? Let's just say a little voice told me so. I was led to this book called “20 Wishes” and I picked it up especially for one of those rare “me” days that I take advantage of from time to time. At the time I didn’t think anything of it, I thought it was just another chick lit read – girl has a crisis, girl meets guy, conflict keeps them apart, finally they get it together, and then fast forward to the happy ending.
However, that was not the case this time around.
At the risk of sounding corny, “20 Wishes” changed or better yet expanded my way of thinking and truly enhanced my life. I promise not to get all deep and introspective but what I will do is challenge you in the way that “20 Wishes” challenged me.
Okay, so here’s the premise: You have to take some quiet reflective moments and draft a list of the 20 things that embody your ultimate desires for your life. And no, this is not just another ‘to-do” list or a goal board where we simply list things we hope to accomplish but do not hold ourselves accountable if we do not accomplish them.
It’s a little more dare I say, “deeper” than that.
For me it wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. I think I was stuck on number 19 for the absolute longest time. But once I had compiled my list I was pretty pleased with myself because I had captured everything that really embodied who I am and what I desire to be, see, and experience in this lifetime.
Now once you get your wish list together, then here comes the accountability part. Draft a friend, family member or mate to take this journey with you. Someone whom you can trust to not let you get away with slacking (so that friend who takes forever to return your calls is probably not a good choice). They must write out their 20 wishes too. Then you exchange them so that you each know what the other desires. Trust is imperative because although you may surprise each other with some of the things that you have listed, you don’t need someone laughing or making fun of your desires.
Your partner must be one that you can stand to talk to or email at least once a week to do a recap of the things that you have done toward realizing your wishes. Like I said before this was not your typical “to do” list, this experience is very action driven. So if you desire to travel to Paris, then maybe the first week you’ve researched flights, maybe the second week hotels, maybe you put together an itinerary of the sites you’d like to visit, or maybe you started a special “Paris” savings accounts. It doesn’t matter how big or small the action step is, it’s just important to do something.
What this has done for me is not only strengthened the bond between my best friend and myself (it was amazing how many things on her list that was similar to mine); but it has also kept all my goals in the very forefront of my thoughts so that I am always doing something toward attaining them and not just wishing. I have since shared this activity with my family and now I am sharing it with you.
No wish is too out there or minuscule (one of my wishes is to end homelessness and hunger, while another is to take a cooking class), but I believe the true purpose of this exercise it to enlarge our vision and place the power of achieving and receiving our heart’s desire within our capable hands.
What do you wish for?