Everyday Spark

Find your spark. Live well. Everyday.

“I invest meaning here.”

I began an online course through En*Theos Academy last week with author and creativity coach Eric Maisel. He has developed a new psychological framework called Noimetic Psychology, and its focus is on the subjective experience of meaning, what exactly makes something meaningful to someone, and how to cultivate meaning in one’s own life. I am profoundly fascinated by this topic, both on a personal and professional level. Figuring out how to live a life that matters––one imbued with stories that truly hold value––is arguably the most important task we have on this planet. The truth is, every single moment can, and does, hold endless meaning: simply to be alive, in a working body with a beating heart, our breath moving in and out, able to carry out the activities we have been called to do is miraculous. We often get so busy, so stressed, so distracted that we just don’t notice.

In this first class, Eric described something called incantations, which he developed as a way to pause and create space for meaning to come into our experience at any point in the day. They are simple, one-sentence phrases split between a five count inhalation and a five count exhalation. The phrases varied from affirmations to statements of intention, and he encouraged us to develop a few of our own incantations that resonate with us personally. One of my favorites that he gave us as was:

“I invest meaning here.”

Because life is what you make it, and meaning is wherever you look for it.

I am optimistic that if I can incorporate this statement both into my daily routine and my thinking about each task I am confronted with, I will get quite a return on my investment.

A Fresh Start

The first week of January is always abuzz with a new energy. People are refreshed after holiday vacations, setting out to make big improvements in their lives in the coming year. I have never been the type to get fired up about resolutions. I think a certain kind of commitment needs to be present to make real and lasting change, and I do not see setting restrictive goals after indulging excessively to be especially conducive to this mindset. Instead, I find my January self to be a bit more reflective than usual, considering what it is exactly that I want out of life and if I’m on course or wandering off on some side street enjoying the view. Often it’s the latter, but I also tend to make my way back a bit more clear about moving forward and why. There’s something to be said for taking the long road.

Perhaps it’s the return to real life after an extended period of relaxation that pushes me to make sure what I’m doing in my “real life” is something that feeds me and calls to me. Or perhaps it’s the perpetual darkness of January days––gray and blustery at their best, the dark of night still encroaching on working hours at both ends. Either way, I’m grateful for the chance to quiet my mental chatter and make sure that the life I’m living matters and the series of choices I’ve made are ones I can live well with.

I’m looking forward to what this new website, new blog, and new endeavor will bring. I have a feeling it will be as much a journey of learning and growth for me as it is for those with whom I work––and I cannot wait.