To be quick in mind and body – vif d’esprit et de corps – that is the goal. In this year of years I’ve seen many recede into dark places, or spritzed with wine or spirits or awash in binge-watching Netflix, or worst of all following the every move of the orange narcissist. Or maybe all of the above. I find myself sliding into these darker places, la détresse, when I’m too immersed in Twitter or Facebook. So I took a 30 day hiatus from Facebook beginning Sunday and just deleted Twitter for the next five days to force a reset of the brain. I’m doing the same five days off without alcohol, just to show it who’s boss.
Where are you most alive? Doing what? To be quick-witted and vibrant requires work, but the work doesn’t have to be tedious or painful. It just requires consistency of effort. Who makes you feel most alive? Why aren’t you spending more time with them being so? What gets you invited to the dance? Raising your own game, of course. Becoming more. Doing more. Seeing more. Learning more. Not for water cooler talk (virtualized for the foreseeable future), but for a hand up on the climb. I view the next 20 years as the climb of my lifetime, and I’d better be mentally and physically fit enough to squeeze as much of the zest out of the experience as possible. And after the next 20? Well, I’ll worry about that when I get there, but it will have to start with a strong base.
Ultimately, it becomes a matter of how do you live with yourself? What makes you interesting enough to hang around this being for any amount of time? What is the next act? Immersion in a French or Portuguese-speaking culture? Knocking off peaks and waterfalls and old castles? Chasing dark skies? Visiting every fascinating country on the list? Sailing across the pond? Building (or building on) lifetime friendships with choice adults, children, grandchildren (should they come) and dogs? Finally finishing those dusty classics taking up space on the bookshelf? There’s time for all of these things, and yet no time to lose. And no time to waste on the stuff of little consequence.
To be quick in mind and body, vif d’esprit et de corps, begins with this next step. And the one after that. Let the adventure begin.