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What does it look like when you're thriving?

The end of March means we’re a quarter of the way through 2018, which could be a good time to reflect on how it’s going. This might help. 

In her book The Gifts of Imperfection social work professor Brené Brown describes the way she and her husband Steve asked themselves, “what does it look like when our family is going really well?”.

Here’s what they decided were prerequisites for a happy family: sleep, exercise, healthy food, cooking, time off, weekends away, going to church, being present with the kids, a sense of control over their money, meaningful work that isn’t all-consuming, time to piddle (i.e. potter), time with family and close friends, and time to just hang out together.

They dubbed these their “ingredients for joy and meaning”.

This seems like a great foundation for family life, but it could also be a worthwhile question for couples (what does it look like when we’re flourishing as a couple?) or at a personal level (what do I need to feel at my best?)

After they’d compiled their joy and meaning list, Brené and Steve compared it with their ‘dream list’ — the things they wanted to accomplish or acquire (a bigger house, and so on).

They concluded that while it was tempting to think that what would make them happier was the bigger house, it was actually the items on their joy and meaning list.

That’s not to say we ought to give up on the things we want to achieve, but answering the question about what has us and the people around us thrive is likely to give us a more valuable life compass. 

Photo Source: Bigstock

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Tuesday, March 27, 2018 | Rhonda Anderson