What's the best way to measure your life and keep an eye on your direction?
Some of us take an look at the big picture on our birthdays, but often that chance for introspection is lost amidst celebratory energy. It's hard to really get deep with yourself in the middle of friends, cake, and booze.
Most of us take a somber look at the bigger picture as we hit the decade milestones begin at 30. These moments for reflection are too infrequent. You may have made 30, but there is no guarantee you'll make 40, nor that you'll arrive in the best position.
Adding to this conundrum, nobody knows exactly how much time they have left on the clock. If I knew I had a day to live, I'd certainly play my cards differently than if I knew I had a month, or a year, or 10 years. I'm sure you would too.
Recently a friend suggested another way to divide up your life... and ancient way... a way that predates the clock and the calendar: Moon cycles.
I've just begun this technique but it's brilliant. On the new moon you reflect on your past cycle and you contemplate the next. As you watch the moon wax, it's a constant reminder to check in on how well you are living up to your intentions.
On my first attempt I set a one word intention for the next cycle: Community. As the moon has been waxing I ask myself, "Am I checking in on my family, my friends, and my neighbors?"
On the next new moon I will ask a new set of questions which were pulled from the excellent book Atomic Habits:
1. What went right this cycle?
2. What didn't go well?
3. What did I learn?
4. What are the core values that drive my life and work?
5. How am I living and working in integrity?
6. How can I set higher standards?
On the next new moon, give this technique a shot. I believe it to be an excellent tool to live our lives with more intentionality.