Some time ago I made the decision that I wanted to focus more on what my soul longs for. I realized I had not been paying enough attention to what best supported my purpose in this lifetime.
There are virtues that define who we are throughout life. Some tell the world what we’ve accomplished so far, like career, home, and “stuff” in general, and then there are the virtues that say what kind of person we are. These virtues are the ones that are remembered at your funeral perhaps, as friends and family remember how you expressed yourself in the world. How you contributed to the wellbeing of the self and others. How you radiated your inner light. We’ve been programmed to build an external career more than how to build inner character.
I noticed that I admired people who have achieved an unfakeable inner virtue that is built slowly as one walks life’s journey through spiritual accomplishments. This inner virtue is not measurable with the eye, but with the feeling one has when in the presence of such individuals who shine their inner life in authentic and lasting ways.
As I looked into my life I saw a humbling gap between my actual self and my desired self. There was certainly room for experiences that could lead me towards the richest inner life possible.
The list of what I thought I wanted to achieve drastically changed once I asked myself this life changing question: what kind of life am I experiencing right now and what kind of life does my soul long for?
Character is built through confronting my own inner shadows with honesty and humility. Being humble and honest are two characteristics that are powerful in building the expanded self.