I just returned from my annual sojourn to Portland, where I spent a long weekend in deep connection with 1,000 other seekers, people who feel called to “live a remarkable life in a conventional world.”
World Domination Summit, the brainchild of author and world traveler Chris Guillebeau, whom I had the good fortune to interview earlier this year, is a pilgrimage for those who want to bask in the company of others who are seeking adventure, community, and service in their lives and careers.
Since discovering the conference four years ago, I have designed my year around being a part of this inspiring, vibrant community. In fact, I have interview several of the inspiring people who have taken the stage at WDS over the years, including Tess Vigeland, Jia Jiang and Pam Slim, among others.
As usual, the experience refilled my emotional tank. I find the weekend such a well-spring of inspiration, as well as an exhausting and exhilarating set of experiences of deep connection and fun with like-minded people. As an ambivert, I float in and out of communication with others at the conference, indulging my extroverted desire to connect deeply and my introverted desire to go to a quiet place, still my mind, and integrate the learnings.
A highlight of the weekend this year was hearing from Jonathan Fields, creator of my favorite podcast Good Life Project, on the “five BE’s.” In his new book, How to Live a Good Life: Soulful Stories, Surprising Science, and Practical Wisdom coming out this fall, Fields distills the learnings from his vast experience interviewing and studying people who are living – and have lived – fulfilling lives.
He started the conference off with five ways of being that are integral components of living a terrific life. In contrast to those who live, as he says, the life of “death by a 1000 to do’s,” being busy and reactive, he stated that in order to live a meaningful, fulfilling life, we need to be intentional about how we spend our time, and where we give our attention.
Galvanized by his presentation, I’ve been sitting with the question of how to be intentional in my life this season.
One area where I am not intentional, on a consistent basis, is my health. I’m considering running an experiment, starting now with the transition into fall and back-to-school for the kids, of being truly intentional about my health, and making it a priority to fuel my body with healthy, whole foods, and exercise several times per week, to see what happens over the next 90 days when I put intention into an area of importance in my life.
Over the past few months, in particular, maintaining my health has gotten away from me. I’m finding myself at a precipice I don’t want to go over in terms of how I’m feeling in my body. As much as I want to shirk intention and bury myself in food that is convenient and not good for me, I wonder what can happen when I take this on, fully, and be intentional about it.
As I bask in the post-conference, end-of-summer glow that fuels a sense of possibility about making real change, I invite you to join me in the experiment of being intentional in an area, specifically in an area of your life that has dogged you for a long time.
To finally stop talking about it and just do it, walking your talk and seeing what is possible when you align your action with your intention. Will you join me?
If you would like some support on your journey, I’m starting a private group, for a small group of people who want to support each other in being intentional. If this sounds like you, and you would like to be a part of this special support circle, please reach out to me to learn more about this exclusive opportunity.
As Jonathan Fields closed out his talk, he talked about how, at the end of each of his podcasts, he asks his interviewee(s) how they define a good life. He left us with a gem – his own answer to the question. To paraphrase his perspective, he said that, “living a good life is a lens through which you see and create your world.” Like a pair of glasses, we have the ability to bring certain things into focus by being intentional.