10 things I can’t live without seems like an obvious sequel! Recently, I wrote an article called 10 Things I Can Live Without. It was the success of that article that made me think about what I can’t live without. Whether you are planning, budgeting or just analyzing your expenses, I think you reflect on your decisions in order to develop your goals and plans.
As I get older and more set in my ways, I know there are certain things in my life I need, enjoy or value to enjoy life. These are some of the things, I probably thought about at various times in my life, but never did much about it. They were important to me and I wanted to have them part of my life. This is the time of year when you start a new budget, try to lose weight, make some changes to reach various goals or make plans for longer range goals. What can’t you live without?
Music – Music is poetry put to a melody or combining vocal and instrumental sounds to produce an expression of emotion. For me, music is a lot of things! It is something I enjoy listening to help me relax, escape, inspire, motivate, stimulate or remind me of a former time or memory.
Books/Magazines/Newspapers – I love to read and read a great deal! I read print material, electronic books and online. It is information and a way to keep my brain from wasting away. It is stimulating in many ways and something to make me think. Reading answers questions and helps me relax, escape, fantasize, imagine and just plain enjoy.
Family/Friends/People – What would I do without human contact? More importantly, I value family, friends and people I have known. The relationships have had a material effect on me and what I have become. My wife and children have made me better and I hope I have had some influence on them as well. I value their support, love and the close relationships of family and friends throughout the years.
Love – The love of my spouse, children or friends is something I value. I cannot imagine living without the love of family and friends. I find the older I get, I realize what is really important in life. It is the love between human beings that are close to me. Everything else just seems material or frivolous unless there is that connection we call love.
Exercise/Physical Activity/Sports – Without physical activity, I would slowly die. I need or require it to enjoy life. I know there will be sometime in the future when I can no longer have as much physical activity, but hopefully that is decades away. I enjoy things like cycling, walking, swimming, skiing and so much more to stop voluntarily. I am not much of a spectator, instead I like participating in physical activity.
Technology – I use my computer to connect to people and access information. I need the internet, computer and phone. I very rarely use it for entertainment, however reading and learning is entertaining. I need information not just because it is enjoyable, but it keeps me engaged with what is happening in the world. I use it to write, engage others and influence through my viewpoint. Technology makes the world smaller and provides access to much more information.
Basic Needs – Food, water, oxygen and shelter are important to just survive and meet your basic needs. I do not need luxury accommodations or gourmet food, but reasonable shelter, clean air and basic good, healthy food is what I want. If you read about the people who live to 100 years old, they eat basic food (unprocessed) and have physical activity.
Work/Volunteer – My various careers have covered nearly forty-five (45) years. I have always worked in some form or another whether for someone else or in my own business. Some may want or need the money, but it is so much more. Do you work to live or live to work? Whether it is work or volunteering, I need the value of work in my life.
Health – It is hard to live without good health! For many years, I took my good health for granted because I was in good shape, healthy and very active. As you get older, you realize that you are vulnerable to disease and injury. I broke my first bone (collarbone) in a bicycle accident twelve (12) years ago. I was diagnosed with glaucoma two (2) years ago and last year I found out I have degenerating discs. I am still active and my glaucoma is under control.
Goals/Plans/Accomplishments – To say I am goal oriented or accomplishment driven is an understatement! In those rare moments that I am not working on a goal, I feel adrift. Even on vacation, I have goals, it may be just to have fun, fit in some sightseeing or taste some good food. Isn’t there a purpose to everything you do? Alright, not everything is important, but almost everything important has a purpose.
When I put together my list of things I could live without, it was easier! I am constantly changing things and giving up something to reach a particular goal. Right now, I am trying to eat a little healthier. Recently, I bought my wife some candy for Valentine’s Day and the sales clerk tried to give me a sample. I surprised her by turning it down. It is easier when I do not have it around me or in the house to give it up.
Thinking or writing about the things I need or can’t live without is harder. As you can imagine, some were easier than others. From my perspective, I try to keep a very small list of things I can’t live without. I value experiences, relationships, human beings much more than possessions. Thinking about what is important in your life gives you direction or what you should focus on in life. So what are the things you can’t live without? Let me know in the comments. These are my 10 things I can’t live without!
Photo by: Samira Khan