May 29, 2014

What is Quality of Life? ~ Julie Ostrowski


Once I started to experience the kind of life I’ve always wanted, I came to a big realization.

I realized that it is simply not possible to “unlearn” something we know.

When we know true happiness and fulfillment, when we know ourselves and the things that provide this physical experience for us—there is no going back.

Once we’ve tasted greatness, there is no more mediocrity.

It’s happening. It’s real.

When my body came to know the experience of feeling truly present (mindfulness has played a huge part in bringing me to a more connected place, one where I am in touch with the voice of my heart and the needs of my body), I realized that going back was simply not an option anymore.

A few things happened, leading me to quality of life.

I realized my life experience was not one of expansion and abundance but one of limitation.

I met some incredible, inspiring people who I feel so blessed to have in my life. I began practicing gratitude, realizing how powerful it is as a means of further expanding the positive in our lives.

I began taking risks, going on adventures, cultivated a mindset of abundance and put my dreams into action.

Sounds simple right? Well it is simple, but I would be lying if I didn’t acknowledge that there has been challenge. And while there is always challenge, we always can come back to the bliss.

Once we know where our energy and fulfillment comes from, our level and type of focus are what will determine the quality of our lives.

Are we able to say no to people to the environments, opportunities and people who are not adding to our happiness?

And how do we stay focused in our decisions? By being aware and making more empowered

“This is to say make more choices, and make more empowered ones.” ~ Danielle LaPorte

Our happiness and the quality of our lives really is cultivated through the choices we make each day—from who we choose to spend our energy on to the kind of work we engage in.

Not choosing is also a choice. When I realized how inspiring, empowering and liberating it feels to take responsibility for my choices—that’s where the magic happened.

Coming from a decisive, empowered place in my life became less about making the perfect choice (which doesn’t exist) and more about practicing the art of choice-making and learning through this practice—in doing this we learn more about ourselves. We learn about what is working, what isn’t and ultimately what we want more of.

A friend of mine encapsulated “Quality of Life” beautifully in a phone conversation:

“If we want to live a high quality life, we need to ask ourselves high quality questions.”

When my friend said this, something clicked.

I then asked myself “Is ____ incredible?”

Immediately I found perspective. I realized what wasn’t contributing to my happiness, and this naturally pushed me towards the necessary action that is necessary to create change.

With this question, we can always choose to fill in the blank with something in our lives that we are not sure is contributing to our happiness: a relationship, living situation, job, environment, plan.

Because when we ask high quality questions, the answers become simple.

Sometimes acknowledging how a situation is really making us feel is hard, but it is necessary to acknowledge this truth in order to become aware, alive and propelled to take positive action.


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Editor: Renée Picard

Photo: Wikimedia Commons 

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