Is Your Life Out of Alignment? Adjust the Shit Out of It (Literally)
Have you ever found yourself moving through your life as if in a haze? You are getting things done, but you don’t really feel fulfilled? You feel like something is missing, perhaps? Other times, you just feel outright unhappy; or you are irritable; or you wonder what is the purpose of life? I have something for you to consider. Maybe you need a life adjustment.
Russ Harris, MD writes how unhappiness can be related to your life being out of sync with your values. In other words, you feel bad because you are not living the life that fits with your value system. Somehow, you have gotten out of alignment. The analogy that comes to mind is when you have physical pain and go to a chiropractor to get re-aligned. I am proposing to you: an adjustment for your life. Get the shit out.
It is easy to get out of alignment in life. So much pulls us in different directions. Maybe you value music, but you don’t make time to listen. Maybe you value freedom, but you feel a servant to your work. Maybe you value family, but you don’t spend much time with them. We don’t know how we got there, but it is where we sometimes find ourselves. And much of the time, we are drowning in shit — perhaps shit that we don’t even care about.
The good news is that mis-alignments can be fixed! Essentially, you need to make time to examine the things you believe to be important in your life, and then you examine how you are living your life. The bigger the gap, the bigger the mis-alignment. The smaller the gap, the smaller the mis-alignment.
I was not able to copy the value bullseye worksheet here, but if you follow this link, you will find it by scrolling down. The bullseye worksheet is a visual way to look at gaps in a variety of life domains. https://www.actmindfully.com.au/upimages/TheCompleteSetofWorksheetsandHandoutsfromGettingUnstuckInACT.pdf. Dr. Harris has generously provided a variety of free worksheets in this pdf that may spur more thinking in this vein.
Food for thought: Existential theorists in psychology believe that all humans have an innate drive to reach their most full potential in life. They believe that low mood or anxiety comes from a “getting stuck” such that the person is not achieving to the best of his/her ability. Others believe that humans have an innate drive to contribute to society beyond self-interest.
More food for thought: In the United States, we used to be a community oriented society. We all took care of one another. Now, it is everyone for him or herself. Needing help or asking for help is seen as a sign of weakness. This is not the case in other countries, particularly in Asia. I think our over-reliance upon individualism contributes to depression and isolation.
All of this said, I challenge you to give your life an adjustment. Don’t jump to medicine or alcohol or sex to solve your problems. Look at your life and what you can control. Look at your values and how you are living your values.
This is your shot to live the fucking awesome life that you are meant to live. You get a limited time to live it. Take some time to think about what is important to you, and then consider how you honor those things in your daily life. Make some choices, and get rid of the shit. You are worth it, motherfucker.