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Episode 24: 3 Ways to Live a More Fully Engaged Life

Do you ever feel like life is just sort of happening to you? 

You meander through your days on autopilot. From home, to work, and then back home.

You absently kiss your partner. You passively play with your kids.

And while there are occasional moments of sheer and utter joy like on your wedding day, or during your yearly vacation, by and large it feels like you're just passing the time.

What a shitty way to live when you put it that way, huh? And unfortunately, it's how must of us sail through life, from cradle to grave.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not judging. I get caught in the exact same cycle. But you know me, and you know I'm nothing without my belief in our ability to change our reality at the drop of a decision. 

With that in mind, here are 3 ways to get out of the practice of passivity and into a more fully engaged, joy-filled life. 

1. Identify what a 'fully engaged life' means for you.

I could sit here and tell you to go sky diving or travel the world as keys to living a more engaged life. But the truth is, that may not be what living a more engaged life looks like for you.

Maybe for you it's simply a matter of having conversations with your partner instead of zoning out in front of the tv each night. Maybe it's leaving your loathsome boss and starting that online program. Maybe it's picking up art supplies in your free time and getting back to your very first love.

The point is, you have to define it. You say you want a more engaged life, so ask yourself what that looks like. Write it down, get detailed, spell out a day-in-the-life, and start enacting every possible part of that picture, starting now

2. Remove things that leave you disengaged.

We all say we want to live more fulfilling lives, and then as fast as the words leave our lips, our eyes drop down to our phones. We immediately get to work mindlessly scrolling through social media, mindlessly consuming hours of television, mindlessly drinking our troubles away. 

Sometimes living a more engaged life is less about what you do and more about what you don't do. 

How would your life shift if you started removing the activities that left you feeling uninspired and disconnected?

What if you started calling your friends instead of texting them? What if you went to see a play instead of a movie. What if you had sex instead of watching porn? 

Living a more engaged life doesn't have to mean a massive upheaval; it can just mean making simple, intentional choices to replace passive activities with active ones. 

3. Seek novelty. 

Ok this is the part where I tell you to go sky diving or travel the world. Or you know, whatever new adventure tickles your fancy. Our brain thrives on new experiences. 

Think about it, when you're doing something new, you don't have the luxury of being passive. Your brain is fully present, soaking it all in, seeking understanding, and making adjustments as you fail and try again.

And again, I always like to bring these ideas down from the clouds and back to earth. This tip doesn't mean you need to make a budget to travel to a new country every other month (although that'd be totally cool if it's in the cards for you).

It could be as simple as going to a different restaurant every time you have a date night. I can speak for myself and Bryan in this, we decided to hop on Groupon to find fun, new date ideas that neither of us would have ever thought of (hello archery course!). 

Take a class, join an activity group, ask your friends to introduce you to their other friends, try a DIY project instead of going to the store for that bird feeder. 

Whatever it is, find something new to try at least once a month and you'll feel yourself and your life expand in ways you never thought possible. 

Ok, now you know 3 ways to live a more fully engaged life... which means there's only one thing left to do: act! So get out there, put these tips to practice, and report back with your awesome adventure! 

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