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The “What’s Our Fire” Exam

“Proper examination should ruin the life that you’re currently living. It should cause you to leave relationships. It should cause you to reestablish boundaries with family members and with colleagues. It should cause you to quit your job.” — @naval

We march through our day-to-day life without serious thought about the big picture. What really matters to us, and are we moving towards that? Sometimes examination tells us we’re on the right track, sometimes we find more smoke than fire. But we ought to sort out what’s going on either way.

Examination doesn’t invite trouble, it offers a lifeline. We get in the habit of saying things that won’t rock the boat. I’d suggest that the boat ought to be rocked now and then. There’s nothing wrong with a spring cleaning for the soul. Purge all those pent-up resentments and simmering anger and give them air to breath. They’ll either ignite into a bonfire or smother for lack of fuel. But we can’t just live every day ignoring the growing inferno without being burned alive from the inside-out.

Socrates famously said that “The unexamined life is not worth living”. Are we meant to be a torch or merely kindling for someone else’s dreams? Think of the things that we accept in our life that are frivolous and inconsequential on the surface, and worse, distract us from the things that might be life-changing given the chance. The thing that makes Naval’s statement incendiary is that we may find we’ve just been kindling all along. Isn’t it fair to ask, what is our fire, anyway?

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