This is the last exercise of Passion Fruit Writing. I hope for you it’s the beginning of a profitable habit of daily writing.
I’m posting this a little bit later than usual. That’s because my friend Sally was here for the week-end and we were nonstop having fun until she left a few hours ago. I’m also preparing a talk to give tomorrow on the subject of my dissertation: Venezuelan Prez Hugo Chavez.
When I moved to Venezuela for the first time in 1987, the “normal” thing to experience was shortages of all kinds of basic products. From chicken, to milk, to phone service, you never knew what you would find at the grocery store. (I know you don’t buy phone service at the grocery store but I want you to know that at that time you had to wait 2 years to get a phone, and that was before cell phones!)
If you remember from your college economics class, price controls usually lead to product shortages. That certainly was the case in Venezuela back then, and today.
When a country runs out of a basic food product, like eggs or coffee, locating supply of that product consumes hours and hours of your day. I remember in May, 2007, long conversations in the faculty lounge about where to find eggs. If a certain roadside truck was rumored to have eggs for sale, everyone would rush over there after work to stock up.
In essence your life and creative energy revolved around buying groceries.
So what do economic systems have to do with leveraging your journal?
Only one thing. When your systems are not working properly, you waste a lot time and energy on things that should not require much time or energy at all.
If you’re not feeling confident about yourself, you spend too many hours trying to prove to yourself and others that you really are competent and likable.
If you’re not clear about what you want, you can literally spend your entire life doing the things on everyone else’s agenda.
If you don’t have a good system for your personal finances, you spend your energy scrambling to pay off creditors.
If you don’t take excellent care of your physical and emotional health consistently, you’re likely to spend more money and time on doctors and medical care.
If you don’t have a system of habits and rituals through which you truly appreciate yourself, you will waste untold quantities of your life force fruitlessly seeking that appreciation from other people.
Only you know if your systems are working properly and only you can take the actions needed to make corrections. In some cases, it’s best to get compassionate and objective feedback from a trusted source.
To help you assess the systems of your own life, I leave you one last writing exercise.
What kind of person do you want to be?
Here’s a word bank to get you started, but write whatever jumps to mind.
(For a much larger list of high-energy words, click here.)
It’s your life. Live it like you mean it.