Finding the meaning of life with time out - coach Dieter Lange has a lot to say about this. "He who has a why to live, endures almost any how." This sentence comes from Friedrich Nietzsche. Could you answer what your why is in life? Do you know the motive of your life? Or put another way, if your life were a book and had a title, what would it be? It's not about your goals, because those are just the chapters of the book. Rather, it's about the big theme your life is dedicated to. Could you sum it up in one sentence?
Executive trainer, keynote speaker and productivity expert Dieter Lange knows: "Most people can't do that. I experience this in every seminar and in every coaching session. The reason is simple: We are not aware of most of our motives at all. Because the majority of motives are on an unconscious level. Furthermore, we've usually inherited our motives from parents, friends, or institutions like the church."
The expert knows that children ensure their survival by securing the attention of others. Dieter Lange: "That's why we have been conditioned, programmed and trained. In addition, at some point there are fears that we compensate for and obsessions that we have developed." For him, an intense preoccupation with the why in life has a high priority. At the same time, however, he thinks it's perfectly fine if not everyone can directly answer the question about the book title of their life. Dieter Lange: "It took me months to come up with the title of my book, too."
What helped the expert find an answer? Among other things, an English saying that translates as, "People don't even know what they want. But they always want what they already know." In psychology, this is known as the repetition compulsion. Dieter Lange: "We often don't even notice how we are sitting on a merry-go-round that keeps turning in the same circles. Most people want to experience pleasure and avoid pain."
Of course, routines and repetitions are part of life and completely natural. However, Dieter Lange complains that many people do not think ahead: "Motives often do not change because people do not take the time to think about them. That's why our lives look the way they do - with eternal repetitive loops. And in the selfie age we live in, those repetitions are becoming more and more self-centered." Most of us have grown up with the guiding principle: higher, faster, further! But that doesn't make us happier.
Take regular time off.Dieter Lange.
So what do we have to do to break this vicious circle? Dieter Lange: "First of all, we should take some time out. Jump off this merry-go-round and give yourself a break!" So the first step is to take some concrete time out. This works, for example, with the help of a Meditation, during a day seminar or sabbatical. Dieter Lange: "The best thing is to travel for two years. After all, life is about seeing the world through different eyes. This time out, however you design it, gets you out of the vicious circle."
The expert knows that our mind works with tension. That's why black, for example, is best seen against a white background. Perception is therefore an experience of contrast. Dieter Lange: "The thrill of contrasts keeps our nervous system permanently agitated. And that's what we're looking for, because we're obsessively connected to it - at least in the stimulus-flooded world we live in."
In order to switch off completely and give your brain a beneficial time-out, you have to take out the tension, i.e. the tone. Dieter Lange: "Experience monotony! Because in exactly this state you can experience a world that is not given to you from the outside. Intuition means: from within." Everything in nature grows from the inside out - never the other way around.
Moreover, you should know that you can never really arrive in life. Dieter Lange: "You can't win the game of life - you can only play it! Because you cannot arrive in life. The journey is the destination. No matter where you are, it's never enough - that's how our ego works. Once you realize that, you'll understand why it's important to take time off."
What can we do after we've jumped off the merry-go-round and taken some time out? Dieter Lange: "We can take a new look and see the world with different eyes." When traveling to distant countries, one experiences that other peoples see some aspects differently or experience them completely differently. The expert is convinced: "Life crises are perception crises. Take other points of view and be ready to see the world with different eyes - that's the prerequisite for finding your meaning in life."
After you get to know other perceptions and points of view, you are able to act much more consciously. Dieter Lange: "Understanding always gets the consolation prize. We don't have to understand everything. Always choose consciously what you do. Then you always do what you have chosen. The really important, big and drastic events of our lives do not happen in a planned way. The difference between people is how they reason something. Life is always made up of missed opportunities and perceived opportunities."
What we need to learn again, according to the expert, is leisure and patience. But then, when the opportunity is there, we should seize it. Dieter Lange: "The safest place for the ship is the harbor, but that's not what it's built for. The central motive that probably makes us humans more fulfilled than anything else is peace of mind. Call it contentment. The formula for happiness is: the body without pain, the mind without confusion." Everything else is a matter of your attitude, your perception, and your conscious actions.