Woman lying on the ground wearing a sleeveless colorful striped dress with pink sunglasses, a ponytail with brown hair and wearing gold platform shoes

How to live a fulfilling life

Jul 21, 2020

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” – Mary Oliver

Do you feel fulfilled by the life you are living? Is this something you’ve ever thought about before? What makes you happy? Where/when do you feel the happiest? These are all topics we will explore in this post.

As an example, Delia feels happiest when she is traveling. Getting to experience a new place, people, culture, food, etc. is all extremely exciting & expands one’s world. Another place she feels happiest is in a museum. For the relatively low cost of a ticket, you can see artwork.

Delia loves the setting of a museum looking at a painting and hearing all different kinds of languages around her. You get to travel to the destination of the painting and imagine what life is/was like there and/or imagine the setting the artist was in while painting it. What thoughts were running through their head? What was the temperature? What were they feeling? A piece of artwork can inspire you or remind you of a place or concept. Oh, the possibilities!! After visiting a museum, Delia feels re-centered and is always reminded of the goals she is working towards & the life she wants to live.

During lockdown, most of us have given some thought to our prior lives. During this process, have you realized you want to make some changes? Or did you realize how lucky you had it?

Here’s what I did…

In my mid-twenties, I began a pursuit of creating a life that would fulfill me without consciously realizing I was doing that. I wanted to expand beyond my college friends & work colleagues, so how to best go about this? Therefore, I started by thinking about what my interests were, and what organizations or groups could I get involved with. I began by joining the young patrons groups of museums, the ballet, etc. You get to meet like-minded people while learning about new art and artists. If you are extroverted, make sure you are able to attend events and be around people. Even when I am tired, I am able to muster up the energy I didn’t know I had and feel so invigorated upon leaving after all the exciting things that happened there.

Podcasts

Listening to podcasts makes me feel fulfilled. I always like to be doing something, and I enjoy hearing how other people have overcome obstacles. I get a lot of ideas, and I also am reminded that I am not on the entrepreneurial journey alone. They are a great reminder of how long it takes to grow a company and it gives me comfort knowing everyone is going through this crazy journey called life together. I want to be a lifelong learner, and I gain so much knowledge from podcasts. Being a lifelong learner and having an insatiable curiosity helps to ensure your life doesn’t get stagnant.

DREAM BIG

…and don’t be afraid of rejection. Working towards & achieving the impossible will certainly help you live a fulfilling life. Make goals for yourself and check back in on them from time to time. Take time to celebrate your wins and congratulate yourself on your hard work! Thinking of a bright future ahead gives you hope & the thought of working to achieve your goals will make you feel fulfilled.

Who do you spend time with?

I want to surround myself with people doing interesting things who work in a variety of industries; people who have goals & a vision for their life, because that motivates me. You become like the people you are around the most, so pay attention to that. It is important to keep up those relationships and make time to see your friends/family in-person or schedule catch up calls. I always want to surround myself with people of all different sizes, colors, religions, ages, etc. because this makes for an interesting life instead of only being around people who look and think the same as you.

Do you surround yourself with beauty?

Create a home environment with beautiful things (this doesn’t mean expensive). Do you have items in your closet that were thoughtfully chosen, filled with memories & that you adore? Is your style something that is important to you? Do you take great care & pride in how you present yourself? Are you starting to collect art not because of the value it has, but because you love it? Does your home have a signature scent? Do you like the pieces you have for tabletop, your furniture, etc.?

Do you live in a city that you love?

Or do you find yourself escaping every chance you can? How can you make it a joyful experience to live there so that you don’t feel the need to frequently leave? Start by thinking about your interests. Are there any activities related to your interests you could start doing? Maybe you could look to expand your friend group & meet like-minded people that live in your city? It might just be the perfect time for you to re-discover the city in which you live & appreciate it more. Maybe you aren’t tapping into all it has to offer you!

If you can’t figure that out, then maybe it is time to move. One of my best friends from college lived in a city and would literally travel every weekend. In this scenario the alarm bells should start ringing!!!!! RIIIINNNNNGGGGGGGGG! Something isn’t right. Go back to where your happy place is, and find a city that has that nearby. She ended up moving out west & is surrounded by nature, and is very happy.

Does your job fulfill you?

We spend so much of our lives working, it would be a shame not to find a job that energizes you. There is a big difference in something being tough/challenging vs. you hating what you do and everyone you work with.

Purpose

Have you discovered your purpose in life? If so, what are you doing to pursue/act on that? I feel one of my purposes in life is to make the world a better, kinder and more inclusive place. This was the impetus for starting The Style That Binds Us. Being able to daily pursue my purpose & working at a job that I am extremely passionate about is very fulfilling.

How you spend your mental energy

Remember to focus on what you DO have & not focus on what you don’t. The grass is truly always greener, and when we have something or when we are somewhere, we always seem to what the other thing or to be in the other place. It is much harder to do this than to compare your life to others based on in-person conversations & social media. Please remember, that even the most perfect people and/or lives often aren’t what they seem. Think of all the things you can do with the energy/brain power you used to spend your time on!

Health

This is imperative. I try to eat as healthy as possible and workout daily. This gives me the strength I need to go about our fast-paced lives.

Kindness

Being kind to others with NO ULTERIOR MOTIVE, but simply… because! In our post-COVID life, we plan to strike up more conversations when we stand in line for coffee or on the subway, smile as we are walking, text a friend out of the blue and tell them how great they are, buy someone a gift, etc. Being kind to others makes them happy, but also makes you happy.

Why am I always in a hurry? I think to live a fulfilling life you should enjoy the daily little moments. Take time to savor the monotonous. Change your mindset to “I get to” instead of “I have to.” I GET to workout instead of I have to workout. Here are some ideas for enjoying little luxuries:

  • Coffee at sunrise
  • Star gazing
  • Candlelit dinner
  • “Chic” reads and movies
  • Singing/dancing with others or when no one is watching
  • Believing in a higher power
  • Chocolate
  • Walking to & from the gym, subway, etc.
  • Meditation
  • Lighting a candle even if at home alone
  • Spraying your favorite perfume

Do you care for yourself?

Another idea to live a fulfilling life is taking time for self-care. We spend so much time thinking about or caring for others, we often put ourselves last (especially as females and after we become mothers). However, if we don’t love ourselves or take time to pamper ourselves (without feeling guilty about it), we might not have enough energy to love others as we should.

Lastly, we leave you with some thoughts:

  • What energizes and rejuvenates you?
  • What are you passionate about/gets you pumped up?
  • What calms you and brings you peace?

Are you living a life that includes elements with the answers to all those questions? What does your ideal life look like? How can you start to slowly make changes to live your most fulfilling life possible?

GO GET ‘EM!!!!!!

Delia Folk

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