It’s so simple yet so elusive. I thought I had it figured out; the thing of greatest value and what it is that matters most. Vitality, of course! Without vitality (aka, life force, energy or the capacity to do our work on this planet) what else really matters? Sure money is important and so is time. But we all know that money without time has no value. Just as we may now assume that money + time without vitality ultimately has no use. But is there something else? Something who’s value is even more fundamental such that in it’s absence, even worldly resources and the energy to make use of them would still fall short?
As if an answer to my pondering, yesterday morning, as I rummaged through some old file folders of mine, out popped this loose-leaf cryptic “note to self” I’d written when I was ill for the second time and bed-bound with Neurological Lyme Disease. I’d gotten some relief from my first course of treatment had been able to work at about 50% capacity for six months, and then crashed to depth that seemed bottomless. Still, while falling, these words emerged on paper one May 5th evening in 2009:
Optimal health and vitality, although the goal, is not the thing of greatest value. What is? The potential to acquire it? Health, wealth, vitality, strength, love, friends and success – all may be lost, all are fleeting. What matters most is not our ability to hold onto these things as we would acquisitions, but our trust in our power to regain them when lost.
I was very sick, then I got well. I was out of shape, then I got fit. I was out of work, then I got a job… Now, I am sick again. I am not in top shape. I have no job. But I’m happy. Why?
I have abilities. I have internal strength. I have potential. I will prevail.
Tomorrow, I will wake up. I will read this. I will know it to be true, and I will try.
Shit! – I wish I had such insights every night and woke up with such conviction each morning. Perhaps I can. And perhaps you can too…
Here is my re-re-vised prioritized list of what matters most:
- Mindset (positive and potentiating)
- Vitality (the energy and capacity to do work)
- Direction (focussed excitement or enthusiasm to take action toward a specific outcome)
- All other resources (time, money, space, tools, etc)