Update to Day 13

Today I bumped into Tom Sorel, our Minnesota Dept. of Transportation Commissioner. He is a leader I really respect. I have worked on some projects with him/his commissioner’s staff.

Commissioner Sorel recently wrote a nice recommendation for me for my application to the Minnesota Emerging Leaders Institute. My application was approved by Mn/DOT, but was not approved by the selection committee due to the high volume of applications received this year.

I was very confident that I would get into the program, naturally I was disappointed by the news, but it really didn’t hurt me in any way. I took it well and forgot about it.

For me, learning opportunities are everywhere. There is always another time, another chance, another opportunity waiting for me somewhere. This Live A Better Life in 30 Days Challenge is just one such example.

Well, Commissioner Sorel said to me today as he passed by: “Qin, I’ll ask Linda (his business manager) to set up an appointment with you to give you some feedback.”

Wow, that’s just what I need. I was so happy and thankful that I will get some feedback, without my asking. I never thought about asking him. But knowing that he is a good mentor to people around him, I really should not be surprised by his action.

Now I feel really excited about it and am looking forward to a feedback session.

Isn’t it called “synchronicity?”

And I am still waiting for feedback from the people I asked for on Day 13.

Day 16 – Creating life handbook

Today is Day 16 of Live A Better Life in 30 Days Challenge.

Day 16 is about creating  a personal handbook – your manual, your life’s blueprint, your guiding point to live your best life.

Life handbook is a term Celes created:

“A life handbook, to put it simply, is your manual that contains anything and everything important in living your life, from your life purpose, adages, life learnings, long-term goals, short-term goals, strategies, plans, right down to your daily tasks. Just like you need a driving manual to learn driving, your life handbook is your manual to progress in life. Just as the Bible is the guidebook that reflects the doctrine and creed of Christianity, your life handbook is your map towards living your best possible life.”

In her article Create Your Life Handbook, Celes says your life handbook should include the following sections:

  • Life purpose/vision/mission
  • Values
  • Strengths and improvement areas
  • Life adages
  • Vision board (visual representation of what you want in life)
  • Life goals: Long-term (5, 3, 1 year) and short-term (monthly) goals
  • Plans to achieve your goals
  • My overall life purpose/vision
  • My life-long goals
    • 5/3/1 year goals
    • My 1 year goals, break down into months
  • Below is a partial outline of Celes’ handbook:

  • My vision board
  • My values
  • My overall life adages based on what I have learned in life
  • My strengths; My improvement areas and blind spots
  • Things that motivate me in life
  • My strategies, plans and tracking for my goals
  • Daily to-do list (Updated on ongoing basis)
  • Inspirational quotes
  • Reflections I get every year
  • Miscellaneous information which I access frequently: My finances, my credit card info, grocery lists, etc.
  • Life handbook is such a great idea! I am excited to create my life handbook.

    The good news is I don’t have to do everything from scratch, I can do some copy and paste from what I have already created.

    The tasks I did in the last 15 days for this Live A Better Life in 30 Days Challenge can form the base of my life handbook. In addition I would like to add the following sections/lists:

    • Biographical data
    • Family history data 
    • Education background (graduation certificates)
    • Employment history
    • Awards and achievements
    • Important dates and events every year
    • Will/living will (if I can get to it)
    • and some more

    My life handbook will surely be a treasure for my children when I pass away, maybe more valuable and important than leaving them some money, hopefully.

    I plan to create my life handbook in Word, with folders and subfolders for better organization.

    You can also use a three-ring binder. With a three-ring binder, you can easily add and remove pages or change orders of the pages/sections.

    A soft copy is easy to edit and update. But it’s not so convenient to look at and review.

    I know the three things that we should do after we created our life handbook will be a little challenging for me:

    • Look at your handbook every morning before you start your day.
    • Refer to it through the day to remind yourself of what you want.
    • Update it constantly.