USC speech

March 18, 2008

Have you been living fully?

Filed under: Uncategorized — minimax @ 1:09 pm


autobiography : a book about a person’s life, written by that persons  • emulate : to copy something achieved by someone else and try to do it as well as they have  • fantasize : to think about something very pleasant that is unlikely to happen  • figure : to be, appear, take part or be included in something  • follow through : to do something as the next part of an activity or period of development  • frustrate : to make someone feel annoyed or discouraged because they cannot achieve what they want  • in retrospect : thinking now about something in the past  • philosophy : someone’s approach to life and their way of dealing with it  • prominent : describes something that is in a position in which it is easily seen  • recall : to bring the memory of a past event into your mind, and often to give a description of what you remember  • regret : a feeling of sadness about something sad or wrong or about a mistake that you have made, and a wish that it could have been different and better  • tendency : If there is a tendency for something to happen, it is likely to happen or it often happens  • typical : showing all the characteristics that you would usually expect from a particular group of things  • variety : the characteristic of frequently changing and being different  • worthwhile : useful, important or beneficial enough to be a suitable reward for the money or time spent or the effort made



1 I have had a greater variety of experiences than most people my age.

How important is having a wide variety of experiences to you? Do you actively pursue a variety of new experiences, or do they mostly just seem to “happen” to you? During what time of your life have you had the most interesting experiences? What an interesting experience that you’ve had recently?

2 My life so far would make an interesting movie or novel.

Have you ever considered writing an autobiography or fantasized about making a movie about your life? What event or time in your life do you think would make the most interesting movie or novel? Why do you think so? Do you enjoy biographical books or movies? Why or why not? Can you think about such a book or move that you found especially interesting or valuable? What famous person do you think has led a very interesting life? Would you like to trade lives with this person?

3 Time passes quickly as I live, but seems long when I recall the past.

Do you find that some times in your life seem to take up a much larger, or much smaller, part of your memories? If so, what times are they, and why do you think they show this tendency? Do you sense that time seems to be going faster and faster? If so, why do you think this is the case?

4 I  wish I could return to some time in the past and relive it so I could do things differently from the way I did them the first time.

If your answer was yes, what is an example of something you would like to do differently? Do you regret what you actually did? Do you usually do more things that you shouldn’t, or not do more things that you should? What’s an example of something in the past that you did that you think you shouldn’t have done? What’s an example of something didn’t do but should have done? If you had to choose one time in your past to relive without changing anything, what time would you choose? Why?

5 Happy memories occur to me more often than do unhappy ones.

What are some examples of memories that you often recall? Why do you easily recall these memories? What is your earliest memory? What feelings do you associate with this memory? Do you think when you are old you will often recall this time in your life? Why or why not? What feelings do you think you will probably have about this time in your life?

6 The life I have lived so far is a good example for others to follow.

Have you ever used someone else’s life as an example for your own life? What about you or your life do you think it is most worthwhile for other people to emulate? Thinking of the people you are personally acquainted with, whose life do you think is the most worthy of emulating? Why do you think so?

7 I feel “behind” where I thought I would be five years ago.

Five years ago, how did you think your life would be now? How do you imagine your life being five years from now? Are you usually able to follow through with most of the plans you make? When you aren’t able to follow through, what are some typical reasons?

8 I must follow my life philosophy much more closely in the future than I have in the past.

How would you describe your life philosophy? In what ways do you think you are most in need of improvement? Would you say your philosophy is closer to “live hard” or “live easy”? In what areas do you think you have made the most improvement in the past few years?

WARM-UP QUESTIONS : Do you feel you are living a “full” life? Which aspects of your life are you most satisfied with? Which are you least satisfied with? Why? How would you describe your life philosophy?

// answer choices

– – =  Strongly disagree

=  Tend to disagree

+ =  Tend to agree

++ +  Strongly agree

// scoring scheme

For questions 1, 2, 3, 5, 6 (shaded): 

– – = 0

= 1

+ = 2

++ = 3

For questions 4, 7, 8

– – = 3

= 2

+ = 1

++ = 0

// results

0 to 6 : You could be said to have been wasting your life, and you probably already realize this. There may be several reasons why you have not made much of your time. Many people in your situation suffer from severe depression, a sense of meaninglessness or hopelessness, or extreme fear. Whatever the cause, you need to discover what it is that is keeping you from getting what you want from my life, and start really living!

7 to 12 : You could not be said to be living fully, as you tend to waste much time doing things that are not closely related to your real needs and desires. You should refocus your life on things that are truly important to you.

13 to 18 : You could be said to have been living as fully or even slightly more fully than most people. You are likely to be quite satisfied with your life, but if you are not, you can consider how to use your time more effectively to complete more quickly tasks that are necessary even though they are not those that are truly meaningful to you.

19 to 24 : You have been living a full, and likely extremely satisfying life. Congratulations!





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