bigger life, smaller life?


Just seen a stretch limousine followed by a Smart car.
Amusing somehow; big and small.
But, as Harry Hill might say, “Which is better?”

Some things, it seems, we have a desire to go large on. Generally we aspire to own a bigger house or attain a larger salary. Indeed some things seem only to come in one desirable size. More leg room on a plane for example – I’ve never heard anyone seek less. Nor do you hear of people praising a smaller heart; having a big heart is a positive thing.

Some things though come with an aspiration for smaller. For little. Many aspire to a smaller waist and maybe a smaller appetite. It’s rare to hear someone say I really want an extra few inches around my middle.  I’ve never wanted a bigger spot on my chin. A smaller inbox might be desirable; more emails anyone? And, as if in counterbalance to the heart, a big ego is often deemed a negative thing. A smaller ego might be seen as preferable.

Sometimes our size preference shifts. Occasionally we downsize, go smaller. Maybe retire to a little house with less maintenance? Or a smaller job, with less pressure?

We all used to aspire to a smaller phone, now it seems we seek a larger one.

Bigger or smaller seems to apply to much stuff in our lives but not so much to our lives themselves.

Do you aspire to a bigger life, to smaller thoughts, to bigger feelings?

Why not? Why don’t we assess these things in similar size ways?

Now that could be smart.


is it vital to be alive?

alive vitality

Take a moment to reflect on your year so far.

On what occasion, in what scenario, did you feel most alive?

I mean truly alive. Alive in a whole body way. Physically and emotionally buzzing, an energy coursing through you like you were plugged in.

Maybe you achieved a work goal, maybe you experienced an adrenalin rush on your first parachute jump, maybe you were walking alone in the forest at dawn, maybe you had a deep realisation about yourself, maybe you completed your first ever triathlon and felt on top of the world, maybe you presented to a group something important to you and won them over, maybe you had a tender moment of love with someone close to you…


If you can’t find something. Go further back. Look for it like it’s a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Seek it tirelessly. If you can’t find a single experience, look to understand components, smaller parts that provide clues to where your vitality rests, then build, add, try, experiment.

Maybe you find it easier to locate the opposite? A sense of fatigue, of being drained, of a kind of deadness? Somehow we have become conditioned to notice this more. The drudge of the commute, the dull but necessary task, the unfulfilled aspiration, the tiresome social gathering…

It’s a useful exercise to list down how you spend your time and then reflect on what nourishes you and what depletes you. Simply getting better balance in your life will improve your state of mind, your sense of happiness or fulfilment, your well-being – swap some draining activities for ones that inspire you, lift you, nourish you.

But more than that, be curious about the nature of that nourishment. Score them. Look at ones that deliver most. Why is that? What properties do they have that align with who you are, what matters to you, what gives you pleasure, what gives you meaning and purpose?

Here lie clues to that vital experience, that vitality, that sense of aliveness experienced in a whole body way – psychologically, emotionally, physically

Never stop looking. It’s vital.

You think you are alive because you breathe air?  Shame on you, that you are alive in such a limited way