The mantra of “personal fulfillment” occupies many minds and hearts. Built into us is a desire for completion, for knowing our lives matter. Yet striving for personal fulfillment is an overrated goal. Let me explain. The word itself tells part of the story: being “full” and being “filled.”  The concept carries with it living to the “max,” taking in as much as possible in the present moment, not letting opportunities for new experiences to escape our grasp, doing as much as we can to have the perfect body, perfect nutrition, the perfect exercise program, perfect relationships, perfect children, the perfect home, the perfect life. For many, being fulfilled also means achieving ongoing integration of body, mind, and spirit and avoiding bumps and pot-holes on the journey. Yet the drive toward personal fulfillment can sabotage us. The effort itself can be so all-consuming that we fail to recognize the value in our emptiness. If we occupy ourselves only in what is personally fulfilling, we won’t learn what we ought to do with grief, sorrow, loss, unhappiness, and the confusion that comes when our lives take a detour away from personal fulfillment. How has your drive for personal fulfillment made you a more generous, open, and caring person?  How has it expanded your world-view to understand people who are different in philosophy, spirituality, and culture?  Do you find your heart embracing even the seemingly ugly, unjust, bigoted, fearful, and “unacceptable” people in our world, yes, even the so-called “deplorables”? The key to personal fulfillment is knowing that we will never be fulfilled! So we can relax a bit and settle into our bodies and allow our spirits free reign.  We can breathe into this moment and sense being filled fully by the spirit of generosity, love, and acceptance.  We can stop our incessant seeking after the “next good thing” and drink in the awe and wonder of life around us. Do we really NEED those six-pack abs, 36D cups, perfectly proportioned faces, 6-figure salaries, trophy spouse, or ideally hatched child?  Can we admit we will NEVER “have it all together?”  Imagine the energy we can now release for loving service in all our transactions! Striving for fulfillment is indeed overrated. Recognizing we are already fantastically fulfilled because we’re breathing, eating, sleeping, and sheltered can be enough. And if we love and accept ourselves we will attract the love and acceptance that will fill us even more.  That alone will drive the dreams that transform our world. © Copyright Michael Parise 2017 Portions excerpted from Michael’s book: Life Interrupted, Taking Charge After Everything Has Changed Since 1979 Michael has worked with individuals and groups to take full advantage interruptions and changes to balance responsibilities, simplify their lives, and find greater productivity and peace. Want Michael to speak for your next event?  Or hire him as your personal executive Life Coach to improve your relationships at home and at work? Call 813-444-9641 or email: Connect with Michael: The Web: LinkedIn Book Michael to speak for your group or event Contact Michael to learn about his Life & Spirit Coaching [contact-form-7 id=”18″ title=”Contact form 1″]