Your Next Chapter By Naomi Schroter
“Your life has been good. You’ve lived a long and healthy one. Click below to see your top moments from your life.”
I received this reaffirming message from FaceBook, which was totally amazing, given that I had made a list the night before of topics to write about for this month. My list included, Digital storytelling, Appreciative Inquiry, Sankofa – Looking back to go forward, and Facebook review of the past year.
I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised as the past few weeks have been full of coincidences, synchronistic happenings and such like. The digital photos of some of my “top moments” were indeed proof of what a good life I have had with friends and family.
As I had dared you in my previous article to go out and “Become the Hero of your own Story”, I am now suggesting that you might want to pause and take and Appreciative look back at your life, as a reminder of how far you have evolved.
In an article by Margaret Moore founder and CEO of Wellcoaches Corporation she wrote: “We do not remember days, we remember moments. Our days get lost and forgotten in the blur of activities, unless we pause to savor the moments. When we look at our lives appreciatively, we are better able to find the beauty in them, even amidst the inevitable chaos; we leverage our strengths to face our challenges; and, we focus on what we want / wish for, rather than what we don’t want.”
Based on David Cooperrider’s work about affirming past and present strengths, assets, and potentials, appreciative inquiry (AI) refers to both exploration and discovery. It is about asking questions, study, and learning.
Here are a few appreciative inquires for you to consider as you construct your next chapter:
- Recall a time in your life when you felt great joy, a great delight inspired by something exceptionally good or satisfying. What was happening during that time? What led to the emotion? What were you able to do as a result?
- If you could have any three wishes granted that would support you in being your best self, what would they be?
Fortunately for me there have been many moments in my life that have given me great joy. For one, when I received notice that I had passed my “O”level Mathematics exam after three tries, at the age of twenty-seven. I had a feeling of elation, that I had broken the code of an unfathomable language that had eluded me all through high-school. As a result, I was able to gain entry into higher education and over a period of fourteen years, eventually obtained my Master of Education degree. It taught me that with persistence, I could achieve anything I set my mind to.
I have used my challenge as an example to encourage my family members and clients over the years to keep trying in spite of disappointing setbacks. Such optimism has been passed on to my three year old grand daughter, who when she sees me struggling to do a physical task will say: “You can do it Nana!” and will praise me with “Good job!” upon successful completion.
So as I join you in writing my “Next Chapter” I am reminded that energy follows thought therefore, I will be more mindful that positive thoughts → positive energy = positive outcomes. Herein lies the answer regarding my three wishes. What will yours be?
By Naomi Schroter Retirement Lifestyle & Wellness Coach