Living More Fully


The quality of our lives depends on how we focus our energy and our attention.

The little girl in the picture isn’t conscious of her wet and messy hair. She’s absorbed in the moment, enjoying the passing scene. She’s fully alive in spite of the rain. And that’s what this site is about, living our lives more fully.

But, you might say, she’s just a kid, obviously well cared for, with no responsibilities. Why shouldn’t she be having a great time? So let me ask you this: were you happier being a kid than you are right now? Would you go back to those days? I sure wouldn’t. Having the freedom to make my own decisions is part of it, of course. But as a kid I hated being a victim of my emotions. For me the best thing about being an adult is the ability to use my emotional energy wisely.

Buttons still get pushed…and that’s just fine. One of the most important things I’ve learned in life is that emotions are just energy, to be used as we choose. How do we use it wisely? The title of this blog is Transforming Stress Into Personal Power, and to me stress is emotional energy that is harmful rather than constructive. Personal power is having a sense of meaning, direction, and purpose in life…and the ability to express that purpose in the outside world. It’s knowing deep in my heart that what I do makes a difference.

So how do we transform negative emotions into positive energy? I’ve been teaching that for the past 14 years in the form of stress management. One of the basic tools I’ve developed is the Traits of Stress-Hardy, Resilient People. I’m reasonably certain these guidelines have made a difference in some people’s lives. I know for a fact they’ve made a big difference in mine.

What about you? What do you do to live life more fully? Do any of the traits resonate with you? Do you think developing any of them more fully would make a different in your life? My posts are meant as food for thought, designed to encourage sharing. Please tell us your thoughts in the comments section.

Picture by MShades via Flickr. Creative Commons license.

purple cow

This post is part of Peter’s Think Different Challenge.
Everyone is welcome to join. Just link back to this post and to Peter. I’m especially tagging

Alex Shalman–Practical Personal Development
Bob– Every, Every Minute
Agent Sully–Life Learning Today
Danny Kohn– Be Inspired Every Day
Jenny–Using My Powers For Good
Galba Bright–Tune Up your EQ
Shirley– Brighter days for you and me!
Tina Su–Think Simple. Be Decisive.

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11 Responses to Living More Fully

  1. Peter says:

    Hi Jean,

    Thanks for participating in the challenge. Interesting observation re childhood. I was a very happy kid, but I too have no desire to go back. Since starting on my personal development journey, and as I gradually learn how to focus my energy and attention, I feel I am truly coming to be in control of my life and create the future I desire for myself and my family.

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  3. Karl Staib says:

    I practice on living life more fully every single day. At times it’s a struggle, but allowing these feelings to just be as they are have been an enlightening experience. When I first started my blog I did it to create an audience, now I do it because it makes me feel good. I created because I wanted to find the right niche to help others, but I’ve really found a better way to help myself. I still want to be successful with my blogs, but it’s not a must, making or breaking my mood on a daily basis.

    Love the picture of the little girl. It’s amazing how much our facial expressions will show the mood that we are feeling.

    Keep up the great thoughts!

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  6. Liara Covert says:

    Great reflections. To me, its important to be willing to learn to step back from what you think you know. This implies it can be useful to self-examine and discover reasons behind your thought process.

  7. Shirley says:

    Although I’ve done a lot of self-improvement, I still struggle with my emotions. I still get angry, jealous and feel inadequate. I use meditation to calm my thoughts and be in the moment. It gives me perspective and understanding.

    I am also trying to bring back those treasured traits of childhood – not being afraid to fail, believing the best in people (without needing proof), and being open to trying new things. I also miss the unconditional love of childhood. Seems like people always want something from you as an adult. Being a child was freedom.

  8. Jean says:

    Thanks for inviting me. You’re clearly on the right track in life. As you know, I’m a fan of your blog and will be seeing how your life unfolds.

    We have a lot in common. I especially like the emphasis on letting feelings and results be. That doesn’t mean we don’t keep working for what we want, but we can relax and not let our happiness depend on it.

    I agree about examining our thoughts. One of my favorite phrases is “We can’t believe everything we think. We can’t believe everything we feel.”

    I like your attempt to bring back those treasured feelings. One thing…are you able to give yourself that unconditional love you miss? That was a major breakthrough for me. I was in my mid-twenties and noticed I was understanding toward others, but very judgmental towards myself. I still remember going into the bathroom at work, looking at myself in the mirror and vowing that no matter what happened in life I would be there for myself…not judging but trying to bring out the best in myself. I’ve never reneged on that promise. It was a life-changing event.

    Thank you all for commenting.

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  10. Hi Jean,

    Thanks for including me in the list. Much appreciated. :)

    I feel as I learn to focus on my innerself. I am in control of myself and be able to do the things my way more effectively. Love to continue the same in future.

    Love & Gratitude,
    Think Simple Now. ~ Clarity & Happiness

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