Friday, June 20, 2014

The #LiveALittle Mission Statement | Living for those who cannot

I've been thinking a lot lately. I love the #LiveALittle Project but want to see it go to the next level. What that level is I don't know. I've been advised to write a business plan & mission, vision, values statement for the project. Making The #LiveALittle Project a registered nonprofit would require those anyway. I've been stuck on the Mission statement. What exactly is the mission of The #LiveALittle Project? There’s a few of the things I have said in the last year that The #LiveALittle Project stood for but this has been the main statement:
“Encourage people to live a little bit more every single day.”
What exactly does that mean? We are all different when it comes to living a little bit more every day. Fitness, health, losing weight, more activity, have been the issues that most of the members of the project have focused on but there are so many more issues project members getting detoured with to further their “live a little” life. Dead end jobs, terrible relationships, estranged family, substance abuse problems, and the big three: lack of self-esteem, self worth, and self-love.
Then it hit me.
In high school I met a very beautiful, funny, caring, protective, loving amazing girl named Michelle. I fell in love with Michelle within minutes of meeting her. We spent hours upon hours together. She was a true friend. We weren’t romantically involved; we loved each other in the purest form, complete respect. Over time our lives drifted apart but we stayed in touch because of modern social media sites like MySpace and Facebook. The last time I saw Michelle was when I went to visit her in
Phoenix nearly 4 years ago. She was still beautiful after all those years. Now a wife and a mom our lives had changed very much but that visit we were swept back to 1992 and giggled like high school teenagers gossiping about everyone we went to school with. About 2 years ago I received an email from Michelle telling me that she had been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer but for me not to worry because she was going to fight it and she was going to beat it.
Six months later my beautiful Michelle died.
A lot of you may have some kind of similar story about someone you love or know being diagnosed with a terminal disease. Have you noticed the amazing thing they do after they are diagnosed? They change. They wake up from the haze that all of us seem to be in. Suddenly trees look different and are more noticeable. Smells smell different and amazing. Wind isn’t just wind, it tickles and fills your spirit. Self-love starts to prevail, self-esteem become clearer, and self worth becomes one of the most important things right next to the love of others. The definition of life for someone with a terminal disease takes on a whole new meaning and I believe that meaning is what we all are striving for. Why must we wait until we are told that our death is very near before we truly start to live a little? Why can’t we do it now? We are all dying but we ignore that. What’s the first thing most smokers diagnosed with lung cancer do when their doctors tell them that their disease is fatal? They stop smoking, because they truly find that self-love to continue to do whatever necessary to possibly continue their life even if it is a tiny chance. It took me 20 years to quit smoking. Even when I learned of Michelle’s disease, and even her death, one would think I would have stopped but I didn’t.
This is where I believe the mission statement of The #LiveALittle Project needs to come from. It’s not solely about fitness, eating right, loving your work, and trying new things, loving new people and those already in our lives. It is about LIVING.
The #LiveALittle Project’s Mission Statement:
“To encourage others to live life as though they would not see next year”

From this moment on I dedicate my #LiveALittle life to my beautiful Michelle and her spirit, and I live my #LiveALittle life for myself and those who love me.