There is an important distinction between “having” a philosophy and “living” a philosophy.
“Having” a philosophy implies that one has a vision of a better way of life, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that the thoughts are being acted upon…that progress is being made in the direction of that vision. “Having” a philosophy therefore can often represent little more than a dream.
“Living” a philosophy, or living with a clear sense of purpose, is about engaging life based on our values, on an accurate understanding of ourself, on a realistic view of the world around us, on a clear understanding of what we are trying to accomplish, focused on principle-centered goals, and by acting daily with integrity to support all of the above.
Drs. Pankey and Barkley talked extensively about the need to clarify our practice philosophy and to apply it daily. But most of us rarely think of ourselves as philosophers – particularly through our daily practice – so we struggle seeing the true value in deeply engaging ourselves in this type of internal work.
Their point was that living a life with greater purpose is often an opportunity which lies right in front of us. And consequently, the opportunity for a life full of emotional, spiritual, and financial reward lies there as well.
Approaching life from a “givers” perspective yields more back in return. It is a perspective of abundance – that loving and caring for others is a reciprocal experience and therefore inherently Win-Win.
Our daily decisions are what drive us toward our future. And it is what we believe about ourself and the world around us -our philosophy- which influences our direction toward a greater or lesser purpose.
Now is good time for you to examine or re-examine your personal philosophy, and subsequent practice and life purpose.
Take the challenge, because here on earth, you only live once.
Paul A. Henny, DDS
Thought Experiments LLC, ©2016
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