The question “Are you happy?” bores me. There are too many aspects of anyone’s life to be condensed and reduced down to a dichotomous evaluation.
I’m college educated. – Happy
I’m not physically fit. – Not happy.
I’m in a long-term relationship. – Happy
I don’t have a job. – Not happy
Furthermore, my level of happiness in being in a long-term relationship doesn’t equate to my level of unhappiness in not being physically fit. (I do appreciate my boyfriend more than I wish I could still deadlift.) My happiness or fulfillment in life deserves to be broken down into (1) the aspects I value, and (2) the extent to which I’m happy or fulfilled. This is where I’m very grateful to have found Kara Benz’s (Boho Berry) concept of the Level 10 Life.
Kara goes into how she found out about the idea of a Level 10 Life here, but I only want to focus on how I plan to adapt it to my own life. I chose 10 areas in my own life that I value:
- Fitness + Physical Health
- Spirituality + Mental Health
- Physical Environment
- Personal Development
Most visualizations of a Level 10 Life are a circle split into 10 equal slices for each area of life, with each slice split into 10 sections radiating from the center of the circle for each ‘level’. Other interesting visualizations can be seen on Instagram with the hashtag #level10life.
The dark lines indicate the starting ‘level’ of each area of life, when one first makes the diagram, to mark progress when looking back. As you improve in an area, you fill in the next space above those already filled.
Even though I’ve broken my life down into 10 areas, they’re each still very broad. To define positive practices and ways to improve the areas, Kara uses the page next to the diagram to list what each area consists of. The meaning of each area would differ for every individual. For Kara, Career means passive income, change lives, and freedom. For me, Career means get a job I enjoy, decide my career, grad school [maybe?] and meet a variety of people. Most of my descriptions are a bit hard to read in the photo, but I suppose I prefer it that way to keep it somewhat personal to myself.
I’m currently low on most of my slices except for my relationship which is pretty strong at a 6. (By the time this post goes up, my boyfriend and I will have been together for two years and nine months! It doesn’t sound like too long, but hey, people have gotten married on less.) Everyday I try to address multiple slices in my tasks and goals, such as working out more often (Fitness + Physical Health) and writing these posts (Personal Development).
I wrote down the date I made my first evaluations (May 31) so I can have a clear sense of my progress over specific time periods. I haven’t decided when I’m going to do my next formal re-evaluation, but I’m definitely excited to see myself progress especially in this stage of life which is full of uncertainty.