So - what’s the next chapter in your life? Literally. Candice Carpenter wrote a book called Chapters: Create a Life of Exhilaration and Accomplishment in the Face of Change and she came up with a technique for people who are ready to make a change in their lives. Maybe you just went through a divorce, a layoff, or your child is heading off to college. Perhaps you just celebrated a significant birthday, or lost someone in your family. Or maybe you’re just sick of the job that once made you happy, and now you’re simply going through the motions – and you’d rather run away to Tahiti.
What Carpenter suggests is to go back through your life and to NAME the chapters you’ve lived so far. Give them titles just like in a book. Then ask yourself what title you would like to give to the NEXT chapter. Life coach M.J. Ryan uses this technique. She says it helps you make sense of your life as a whole, and helps you create meaning beneath the surface of your day-to-day activities. So how can you nail down what your next chapter should be? Here’s a formula we came across in Health magazine – the “LIVE” formula:
- “L” is for LOVE. What do you love to do? Make a list.
- “I” is from INNER GIFTS. What are your natural talents? Offer these to the world.
- “V” is for VALUES. What kind of contribution do you want to leave at the end of your life?
- “E” is for ENVIRONMENT. What people, places, timing and physical conditions bring out the best in you? Hone in on them to bring out the best setting for your next chapter.
For example, let’s say one of your biggest loves is nature. Maybe you could name your next chapter “My Green Thumb” and use your talents to help the environment by joining an earth-friendly organization. That’s what Ryan says one of her clients did – and she no longer wants to run away to Tahiti. For more tips, check out the book Chapters: Create a Life of Exhilaration and Accomplishment in the Face of Change.