A meaningful life is one which enriches us, provides value, and makes us feel like we matter in this grand world of ours. Life satisfaction is only made possible when we put out good energy into the world and get a bit of that positivity back. It doesn’t matter if you’re five years old or 85, you can add more meaning to your life at any moment. In this article, we’re going to share how to live a meaningful life in 2023 so you can make life meaningful again.
How to Live a Meaningful Life in 2023
1. Practice meditation
You might be wondering how to make life meaningful, a good way to figure it out is to be introspective. It’s almost always those moments where we have poor life sastisfaction and we hit rock bottom that we come up with epiphanies or solutions that change our lives for the better. A good way to make an epiphany or moment of clarity happen is by practicing meditation. A guided meditation can calm the chaos in your mind, so you can think clearly again and form a solution that will make a difference in your life.
There are various types of meditations so if one style doesn’t resonate with you, try another style. For example, if there’s a lot of conflict in your life, you might try loving kindness meditation. If there’s a lot of conflict in your mind, a meditation for anxiety might be what you need. When there’s too much tension in your body, a body scan meditation can help you locate it. It can help you pin point your discomfort or problem areas, so you can approach a situation from a different perspective. Sometimes, all you need is less chatter in your head to be your best self for yourself and others.
2. Create uplifting goals
You can create a meaningful life by setting new goals that uplift you. Consider what things you value in life, make a list of them. You might include values like family, good friends, good mental health, helping others, spending time with like minded individuals, learning and gaining a new hobby, and more. Ultimately, you’ll want to create a personal philosophy to live by to find meaning in your life. Using the values you’ve come up with, set some goals over the next little while. You might include goals like host a family get together four times a year, make 10 new friends, help at least three people every single day, or carve out time to play every Saturday for three hours. By being specific with an exact number of what you hope to accomplish and setting a routine that makes it easier to stick to it, you’ll be able to add more meaning to your life by being intentional about it. Knowing what you want is half the battle, actually doing it is what will yield the results you want.
3. Spread kindness in every interaction
A meaningful life is filled with a sense of community. Finding meaning is often as simple as making life more meaningful for someone else. Believe it or not, but kindness is hard to come by in this world. People often want something from you when being kind to you and it’s usually your time or money. But being kind to others ripples out in so many positive ways. And you get a lot more inner peace in your life when you’re kind to others. Challenge yourself to scan every day for opportunities to be kind to people. Look for opportunities to praise the good work of colleagues. Give a listening ear to someone who’s going through a rough time and validate them instead of giving them advice. Instead of stirring the pot or causing drama when someone tells you gossip, help them reframe their pain differently so that they can heal hurt wounds. When one’s life is filled with pain and turmoil, kindness can go a long way to make it more meaningful.
4. Help people as much as you can
The world is always looking for helpers. You can add more meaning to your life by helping people. It gives you a chance to make a positive impact, can be your life purpose, and makes life worth living. Throughout your life, you’ll need the support of people around you. However, when life is good for you, you should actively support and uplift others. You might volunteer at a retirement home and spend time with lonely older adults to help them find joy as they age. When friends or family members are stressed with kids, work, or household tasks, you can offer to help them by recommending some tasks they can delegate to you. It can be highly meaningful to give people a break when you have energy to help others when they need to recharge their batteries. Plus, it’s good for relationships to offer support as needed.
5. Listen to people’s life stories
One of the ways to make life meaningful is by listening to people’s life stories. You can connect with others to learn what their life has been like, the challenges they’ve faced, and how they’ve overcome obstacles. It can provide a sense of connection to others, build your social network, and help you develop empathy for people. When we realize the challenges people have been facing, we might see them in a more favorable light. Plus, it can help give us more perspective in our own lives to, especially if we take life for granted. People’s life stories can also be inspirational. You might see something someone has achieved and be inspired to pursue something you didn’t think you could do. It can make you realize what’s possible in life when you work hard.
6. Reflect on your own mortality
You can have a more meaningful life by reflecting on your own mortality. Life can be really short when you don’t know how or when you’ll die. It forces you to live in the moment to make your life meaning increase. When you’re young you think you’re invincible, but as you grow older, you realize that you actually aren’t. You can’t escape life alive. You’re going to lose your life one day. When you realize there’s a time limit to your existence, you can prioritize the things that actually matter in life: family, friends, growth, experiences, and so on. Instead of running your health into the ground from stress, you might choose to be more proactive with muscle building and exercise. You might also spend more time playing and being a goofball instead of taking everything so seriously. Life is a balance of good and bad, but when we don’t do the things that nourish our soul, we’ll have more bad things in life.
7. Invest in your dreams
You can build a meaningful life by coming up with new ideas to make your dreams come true. For example, if you dream of retiring early, you might brainstorm ways to pay off your mortgage, save for the future, and build a passive income machine to continue earning money once you no longer need to work. Whatever you envision as the perfect life for yourself, you can dream up and build towards. Don’t discount your life to fit a mould you think you’re stuck with. You can break any boundaries set around you. It can take time to build the life you want, but as long as you keep working towards it, you can accomplish anything. No matter of your age, salary, race, ability, gender, and more.
8. Continue building relationships
You can build a meaningful life by building relationships throughout your life. Most people make the bulk of their friendships in childhood or as a young adult. However, your life as an adult lasts much longer. Building relationships, maintaining friendships, and connecting with people outside of work will help you live a longer life. A sense of community can strengthen your well being and boost your immunity. Having strong friendships can improve life satisfaction. Even introverted people appreciate good people. Having a few solid friendships that you can connect with any time can make you feel a sense of belonging, improve your well being, and make life meaningful. Most of our life meaning comes from our connection with others.
9. Find happiness in moments
You can one’s life meaningful by finding happiness in little moments. When your negative thoughts are focused on the past, you become more depressed. When your thoughts are focused on the future, you become more anxious. Most happiness is found staying in the present moment. You can find joy by stepping away from your thoughts. There’s a sense of peace that comes from a calm mind in the present moment. You can find happiness by appreciating all the good things in your life. Expressing gratitude can help you find the happiness that gives you meaning. Life isn’t about the big moments, it’s about the simple, every day moments. When you live for the every day moments, you learn to develop meaning in life.
10. Be optimistic
You can create a meaningful life through an optimistic lens on the world. People tend to view the world from a pessimistic lens, it’s what helped us survive and thrive through some real-world dangers for our ancestors. However, the threats of today are far less deadly than the threats of a thousand years ago. In today’s world, optimism will serve you better. It’ll allow you to enjoy the experience of life instead of catastrophizing or expecting the worst. In social psychology, there are many benefits for optimism when it comes to relationships. People who are more optimistic are more likeable and will be able to build strong relationships. They’ll also be able to better manage life challenges and difficulties along the way. You can create a better life experience for yourself if you view the world optimistically.
11. Learn from mistakes
There’s a lot of meaning in lives filled with mistakes. We look at our mistakes with a sense of regret, but they’re actually learning opportunities to improve you in the future. They’re meant to make you better with time, so you experience self-growth. Don’t be hindered by your past or live a life of regret. Take all the life lessons you’ve learned along the way and make life meaningful by bringing out a better version of yourself with time. Your life philosophy should be to learn from mistakes and become better. If there weren’t hiccups or mistakes along the way, life would be quite uneventful and bland. It would lack meaning in our lives. You can find meaning in those little mistakes.
12. Invest in your personal growth
Speaking of personal growth, there are many ways you can develop yourself to find meaning in the world. You can read books and create meaning in your own words from it. You can challenge yourself to learn new skills. Or meet new people with opposing viewpoints from you to dig deep into other perspectives out in the world. You could start a podcast where you interview people to hear their life stories. When you learn the importance of personal growth, you’ll start to realize the meaning of life and how nature really works.
13. Take moments to enjoy life
Life isn’t all about work. Sure, our work can enrich our lives with meaning, especially if it’s a noble cause. However, take time to carve out adventure, travel, relationships, and other things you value to make the most of the limited time you have. We spend decades of our lives working, but our lives our only about 6-10 decades long. And that’s only if you’re lucky. So, take breaks for yourself. Do the activities you want to pursue. Find time for yourself to do things you enjoy or are passionate about. Don’t become stuck in life’s motions. Give yourself a chance to experience the beauty of the world and the things that matter.
For the sake of your well being, you can make a meaningful life in a multitude of ways. Keep in mind that the meaning of life is created by you. You can choose what you value and live a life based on your values to have an enriching experience. Don’t settle for a life of less than what you want. Build a future for yourself that you can look forward to. Spend time with those you love. Experience things you’ve always wanted to try. And build a lasting connection to your community. It’s all these things that give our life meaning. When you reflect on your life in old age, you’ll feel blessed with the things you’ve done if you chose to live life on your terms.