11 Things I Can’t Live Without

by Tess on October 8, 2009

The Redwoods
Creative Commons License photo credit: auntjojo


11 Things I Can’t Live Without

1. My faith. Believing in a Presence greater than myself I feel loved. I listen to Spirit and act on Divine guidance. My positive thoughts and prayers lift me to a new awareness.

2. My family. The love and support I give and receive is what makes my world go around. They make my heart sing. I would die for any one of them. I will live enjoying and appreciating their presence, feeling honored we are together on this journey. My feelings are the same for friends although not as intense.

 4. Wisdom. What I’ve learned from my life experiences is precious stuff.   Live simply. Give more. Expect less. Choose to bring love to every situation.   Expect good things to happen. Acknowledge beauty and wonder. Enjoy the   present trust in the future. Initiate change. I have a profound greatness.   Surrender. Forgive… Speak less and listen more.

3. My work. My job is to show up, have fun and do as much good as possible for as many people as possible every day.

4. Exercising. Growing up I worked outdoors on our family’s 88 acre produce farm. I love to do anything outdoors! Well OK I don’t like to swim! I just came in from a four mile run and feeling the sun on my skin, seeing the mountains in the distance and breathing in fresh air is a sensory experience that is priceless for me.

5. The quality and energy of my life.I’m vibrant, enthusiastic, strong, energetic and fun. My intention is to live life to the fullest. Of course I have off days but I know I only have to choose differently and see things differently to get back on track.

6. My joyous appreciation for everything.

7. My dreams. Anything is possible…at any time! I remain open to infinite opportunities.

8. My positive attitude. I envision the best for me and the best for you. I see the best possible outcome for any situation in which I’m involved.

9. Laughter. It saves me each time I catch myself taking life too seriously.

10. My thirst for knowledge and willingness to change and grow. My desire to take 100% responsibility for my life.

 11. My limitless future. I face the world boldly. I experience life with joy. I believe in myself and my talents. The best is yet to come!

I could go on with this list but instead want to give you the opportunity to add to it.

What is it that you couldn’t or wouldn’t want to live without? Please share in the comments below.

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    { 36 comments… read them below or add one }

    Patty - Why Not Start Now? October 8, 2009 at 11:32 am

    Hi Tess – Your list is such a powerful declaration! Inspiring. The thing I couldn’t live without – Creativity. In all shapes and forms. It provides glue for all the different areas of my life. Thanks.
    .-= Patty – Why Not Start Now?´s last post…Welcome to the Party Called Life =-.


    Tess October 8, 2009 at 12:18 pm

    Oh yes how dull life would be without it. I think we’d all be very uninspired. As this list grows I’m sure we’ll be reminded of so many things we take for granted. I’ll be adding them all to my gratitude list.


    Mark Lewis October 8, 2009 at 1:39 pm

    You might not like this but I’m going to say one of the biggest things I can’t live without is my computer. It’s a gateway to the world. It’s a gateway to my friends and family. It allows me to be creative. It allows me to express myself.
    .-= Mark Lewis´s last post…Opportunity Is Plentiful =-.


    Tess October 8, 2009 at 1:49 pm

    I love it! And I’m happy you stopped by to share. You’re free to say and like what ever you want…on my blog…and in life. I like you already:)


    Positively Present October 8, 2009 at 1:50 pm

    Great list! I’m going to have give some thought to what I can’t live without… Great topic!
    .-= Positively Present´s last post…jump in: the pool of positive thought =-.


    Davina October 8, 2009 at 2:08 pm

    Hi Tess. I couldn’t live without curiosity and humour. They keep me present, moving forward and they lighten the load when I get too serious, which happens more than I’d like to admit :-)
    .-= Davina´s last post…8. A Trail Through Thyme =-.


    Joy October 8, 2009 at 3:51 pm

    Quite honestly every time I think something is essential to living, I learn through loss that it is not essential, only preferential….so I would say my faith. It is the one constant that shapes me most; that nothing can touch. Even the moments when I doubt so “temporarily lose it” it is still there for me to rekindle, and it grows even if I am not purposely growing it. Everything else in my life is somehow related to it or birthed from it.


    Keith October 8, 2009 at 4:44 pm

    Hello Tess,

    This list is full of power and meaning. I love how you’ve opened your heart to us and I echo many of the things you’ve listed here. Three that stand out are the love for and from my family, humor, and a thirst for learning.

    For myself I would add:

    Music- I can’t imagine life without it because it is so many things to me. Worship, comfort, release, motivating, energizing, peace etc.

    Being a help/blessing to others- I hope that doesn’t sound like I’m trying to be all self-righteous, I just really love to help someone, to encourage someone when they need it or even give someone an idea when they’re stumped. Of course, I receive from these experiences as well and what I receive is invaluable.

    Thanks Tess.
    .-= Keith´s last post…Living The Kind Life =-.


    Megan "JoyGirl!" Bord October 8, 2009 at 5:11 pm

    What a beautiful post — 11 things, eh? You had some pretty good ones on there, and I’m sure I’ll overlap in the few I’ll mention, but here goes:
    – LOVE — In the past year, I’ve seen love transform my mind, body and life. I believe it is the ultimate energy in our Universe.
    – CONTEXT — I realized that without times of struggle in my life, I wouldn’t know how to appreciate times of tremendous joy. While I don’t always like challenges in the moment, hindsight allows me to embrace the context they offer.
    – My MAC — Yes, it’s true. I’m going to be materialistic here for a moment. My little MAC laptop keeps me connected to people around the world, and makes me feel less alone as a single gal living by herself most days of the year. Plus, it’s connected me with amazing new friends like you, Tess, and the rest of this awesome blogging community. I smile ten times more each day than I used to because of this awesome and tiny machine.
    – FAITH — Faith keeps me going and tells me in no uncertain terms that I’m bigger than my body (thank you, John Mayer) and destined to fulfill God’s plans for me. WOW!

    And here’s sending some love to you, Tess, and your awesome lists!
    .-= Megan “JoyGirl!” Bord´s last post…The Magic of Meditation =-.


    Carolynn October 8, 2009 at 5:27 pm

    A companion animal in my life.

    These angels wrapped in fur are a necessity for me. Those who have graced me with their presence have been teachers and healers. Profound wisdom and love incarnate. This has been my experience of my companion animals.
    .-= Carolynn´s last post…My Great Ambition =-.


    Jan October 8, 2009 at 5:37 pm

    Tess, if I am very honest, I would not want to live without my partner. After 24 years of unhappiness, I have been so blessed to find a true soul partner later in my life— a conscious and spiritual attuned man. Other than my children, this is the greatest joy I have ever known. We are going on 9 years now and it is still mahvelous darling! Better than ever, deeper, more true. I am sure you know what I mean …
    .-= Jan´s last post…Today, A Voice for Men’s Spirituality, Lance Ekum =-.


    diantha October 8, 2009 at 6:01 pm

    Hi Tess, this is such a great post and quite thought provoking…I love all your 11 reasons and they would all be on my own list. I also find family a big reason, my husband, kids and grandkids….and then family of choice: friends of all ages and walks of life….AND the furred kind as Carolynn added. They all enter in my definition of family!


    Evita October 8, 2009 at 7:52 pm

    Hi Tess

    Oh this is such a beautiful list and so inspiring Tess – that I am wavering between going and not going to write one of these lists myself and of course linking to you as my inspiration… the only thing stopping me is that my list is so close to yours :D

    So what to do…. what do you think?
    .-= Evita´s last post…Infuse Happiness Into Your Work Day With Happy At Work Action Day =-.


    Wilma Ham October 8, 2009 at 8:12 pm

    Hi Tess.
    Ditto for all the above things you mentioned and I would like to add some books.
    Some books have blown me away, like ‘Love without End’ and the ringing cedar series and I would absolutely not go without the useful understanding of life these books have given me.
    They have offered workable explanations which make so much sense to me when I am getting myself in a muddle. They are like a life buoy to me.
    Watching little children is also a lifeline for me to tell me how I should look at life.
    And this lovely blogging community where I feel ‘belonging’ and enjoy each other’s boldness and where we can hug each other.
    So hugs Tess and everyone.
    .-= Wilma Ham´s last post…Accessing the wealth that has me BE a wealthy base camp. =-.


    suzen October 8, 2009 at 9:50 pm

    I LOVE lists like this! Thank you so much for sharing yours. I’m a journal junkie and I start off each new one with a list like this. It’s interesting after 40 yrs of journaling to look back on how the list (or myself) has evolved.
    I know I could not live without joy or creativity or humor. There is so much joy in the world, creativity is not just an art istic pursuit but problem solving and creating fabulous lists like yours, and humor? I love laughing and making others laugh. It’s good medicine!

    Fabulous post! A great thing to really think about!
    .-= suzen´s last post…Magical Make-Over(s) =-.


    Kirsty October 9, 2009 at 4:08 am

    Hi Tess! This a great post and I have to say that I like number 4 (the first of the number 4’s on your list, cos you have managed to sneak an extra one in): “Expect good things to happen”.

    All too often we get caught up with what is happening around us and expect things to be bad. Maybe not all the time, but I know myself that I sometimes expect the worse. Whether this is a defence mechanism or the like I am not sure, but it can’t be healthy all the time!

    I can’t live without my little family and my beloved cat and dog. I realise that I will indeed live beyond them and they will one day pass on, but they give an unconditional love that I admire.

    Thank you for sharing,


    Stacey Shipman October 9, 2009 at 6:11 am

    Our lists are very similar!

    Family, friends and my 2 cats are absolutely at the top. Along with exercise, laughter and my constant need to collect “data”.

    In addition I would add:

    Living as close to the ocean as I do
    My yoga/meditation practice
    Music and dancing!
    My morning coffee and journaling time
    My freedom to create my future.

    have a great weekend!
    .-= Stacey Shipman´s last post…How I Found “Work Happiness”, Finally =-.


    janice October 9, 2009 at 6:22 am

    We share so many of the same things on our lists, Tess, and it doesn’t surprise me that our lists overlap with other friends and colleagues over here, too. A few to add to the list would be:

    ~Sleep! Delicious, nourishing sleep.
    ~Creativity; I don’t know what would happen if I couldn’t create every day.
    ~Time alone to write and refresh my soul.
    ~An abundance of perfect Scottish water straight from my tap or from a stream, any time I need it.

    There are more, but I only really need my family, my faith and love – and enough vibrant health to be able to love well.
    .-= janice´s last post…Sea Breezes, Books and Minerals =-.


    Tess October 9, 2009 at 7:20 am

    It’s always great to know that I inspire you because both of your blogs are so inspiring to myself and so many others.

    Yes yes on curiosity and humor. Life would be dull without both.

    How profound to be able to go from “essential to preferential.” I’m sure it brings you much peace of mind and because of that much joy! I’m going to remember that the next time I get into the state of needing something. Thanks for the insight!

    Knowing you I believe you are very sincere about helping others. You’ve helped me with my blog and through yours.
    Thanks for mentioning music…I need to listen more! I had my granddaughter show me how to put music on my ipod and I still forget to play it. Is that crazy or what?!?

    I’ve always felt close to my kids through their music. Kristy in Atlanta made me 8 CD’s because I was still listening to the one she made for me 3 years ago continuously. My granddaughter has me listening to rap which I never thought I would and most of it I now enjoy. Thanks Keith!

    I’m so happy for your new found love this year. Yeah! Does he know how lucky he is to have you?!? I know I know it’s not luck. It’s Divine Order!

    I understand the computer connection. I feel the same about all of my blogging buddies and friends and to think there are so many more to get to know and become friends with is amazing. And to think they’re all over the world makes me smile. Thanks for being my friend Megan!

    I’m grateful for all my friends and their furry friends! They have so much love to share.

    Yes Brad is a honey. I miss his writing. Does he have a blog? Yes I do know what you mean and know we’re both so blessed to find life partners and know it.

    Yes when you get specific like kids and grandkids I could go on and on about the joy. Sometimes I think I refer to them too much and too often so this time chose not too. And furry friends give so unconditionally.

    Yes go make and publish your list. I’d be honored with a link my friend.

    Yes yes books. I didn’t mention for two reasons books specifically. I don’t read them as much as I used to after making my decision to stop buying books. Also I read so many blogs I don’t have as much time for books. I can’t believe that I’m writing this because a year ago I would have never dreamed this would be but hey life changes. I haven’t read the ones you mention and I see a trip to the library on my agenda.

    I love journaling as well and have mine from the last 7 years on my book shelf. My also have lists and yes creativity has been mentioned over and over and it is used for so many things…cooking even which I’m not fond of!

    I’ll be expecting good things to happen for you all weekend. Have a good one and thanks for commenting!

    My daughter says “Yum Yum to my grandson each time she feeds him and those were the words that I thought of when I read your list…ocean, coffee, journaling and creativity…Yum Yum. Can I come over for a visit?

    Your last line says it all doesn’t it? Faith, family, love and health. A great big Yes to that and sharing it as well!


    Caroline October 9, 2009 at 8:47 am

    Love this list Tess! Faith! I certainly could not live without that…or hope. I would add Gratitude to this list. I am grateful for so much…my life, my friends, my family, my artistic expression, my dogs, blogging…I could go on and on…
    .-= Caroline´s last post…Is better always better? =-.


    Jannie Funster October 9, 2009 at 10:46 am

    Me too on faith, family and exercise! And just about all you mention, Sweet Dear Tess.

    And… as Janice, time alone — solitude to refresh the soul.

    And… hmmn, maybe if I tried Scottish water I couldn’t live without it too? :)

    And… maybe I’ll switch to a Mac and find out how JoyGirl Megan feels. I will be in the market for a new laptop before too long.
    .-= Jannie Funster´s last post…And So On. And So On. And So On. =-.


    Patricia October 9, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    Wow I do so love your lists….quite a read and quite a joy. Thank you for sharing
    .-= Patricia´s last post…Thoughts about Microwave Ovens! =-.


    Julie October 9, 2009 at 5:22 pm

    Beautiful, Tess. Thank you.

    Well, I’m taking your post title literally. My belief is that when all is said and done, we only have ourselves. We arrive in this world and depart it the same way: alone. All the rest, everything in between—even our relationships to our most beloved loved ones—is not ours to “do without.” It’s all there to enjoy and make the most of, to enrich our experiences of living and learning and evolving… As much as I absolutely LOVE my life, everyone close to me, my experiences and surroundings, the parts of myself I couldn’t do without are few:

    My intellect; how my mind is always peeling away the layers, trying to find the “why” behind, oh, just about everything! Searching for truths… New ways… Simple wisdoms… the Light…

    The ability to readily laugh at myself, at life; to feel and revel in everything as fully and with as much joyous abandon as I can manage!

    My ability to love, love everything: people, animals, nature, events, concepts, life itself…

    The power of thinking, an ability to enjoy, a capacity for love… Yes, these three things. And I plan to hang on to all three for the duration! :)
    .-= Julie´s last post…Honor Redux, with a Twist =-.


    Angelia Sims October 9, 2009 at 8:02 pm

    What a great post! Fills me up to read it, especially #6. I learned “joyous appreciation” the hard way but what a reward it is. It’s a joy to appreciate this awe-inspiring list!
    .-= Angelia Sims´s last post…Braving Love again-The Break =-.


    Daphne @ Joyful Days October 10, 2009 at 4:45 am


    I absolutely loved these words: “Live simply. Give more. Expect less. Choose to bring love to every situation.” Thank you for sharing them. If I could live this way, I would be ready to die anytime because I would consider my growing here on earth done.
    .-= Daphne @ Joyful Days´s last post…What Makes A Good Relationship =-.


    Karen Chaffee October 10, 2009 at 5:16 am

    What a wonderful list of “life necessities,” Tess. We share many of those things in common. Other things I couldn’t live without: Love and laughter, books and good music, hope, nature, a vision for the future and an embracement of the “now.”



    Karl Staib - Work Happy Now October 10, 2009 at 6:01 pm

    Great list! I’ve been thinking about the great things in my life and I can’t live without…
    1. Love (Wife, child, and dog make me feel all good inside)
    2. Wildlife (a walk in the woods makes any stressful time evaporate away)
    3. Dark Chocolate (It’s been making my afternoon’s just that much better)

    Thanks for this great idea. I loooooove reflection too. Can’t do without it. :)
    .-= Karl Staib – Work Happy Now´s last post…Hard Fun and The Beautiful – Looking Forward Edition =-.


    Barbara Swafford October 11, 2009 at 1:47 am

    Hi Tess,

    As I was reading over your list, I was nodding in agreement with each one. Like you, I put my faith at the top with family and friends next.

    I also need time to myself. It gets me re-energized so I can enjoy all that life offers.
    .-= Barbara Swafford´s last post…Does The Party Ever End =-.


    Lance October 11, 2009 at 3:43 am

    Hi Tess,
    What a wonderful list – and reading it just fills me with a sense of what is right and good in the world.

    Me? I can’t live without my heart. Or, at least – I can’t truly live without my heart is maybe better said. When I connect with my heart, that’s when I’m connecting with what really matters. And when I let that slip, I think I go from a place filled with life, to a place of more just existing. And that’s not a good place to be… It doesn’t mean I’m fully there yet, where I live out my heart’s intentions completely. It’s all part of the journey, and an journey that is taking more and more toward the deeper connection with my heart…
    .-= Lance´s last post…Sunday Thought For The Day =-.


    Stefan October 11, 2009 at 5:19 pm

    I got caught thinking about my dreams when you mentioned dreams. I’m not sure if you mention nightly dreams or dream of success but I think both of them are great. If we don’t get enough sleep to remember our dreams I actually think we will feel a bit worse for every night. There are something in about my dreams that just makes me happy thinking about them, every morning.
    .-= Stefan´s last post…How to Automatically Back Up Your Computer =-.


    Patricia October 12, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    Came back today because I got toothpaste all over my other copy of your list and I want this up on my morning mirror…
    Still a wonder full list
    Thank you
    .-= Patricia´s last post…Some Words are Just Hard to Hear =-.


    Peggy October 13, 2009 at 12:41 pm


    I’ve been overwhelmed a little of late, but seem to be coming through just fine. I have a tendency to respond to the crisis and then have a mini brain implosion.

    So it was with great pleasure to click on my link to your site and see this post. I realize I’m really late to the party, but I’m here :-) And happy to read your inspiring and uplifting post!! Exactly what I needed today!
    .-= Peggy´s last post…Your Moment of Bliss =-.


    bingo no deposit November 1, 2009 at 8:30 pm

    Refreshing to see that there are no possesions on your list! Mine might look much the same :)


    lucy may May 5, 2010 at 9:22 am

    If your cornfield is far from your house the birds will eat your corn.


    Esteban May 14, 2010 at 2:41 pm

    Great read! Looking forward to the next one!


    Pepechulo July 13, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    Excelente art?culo, supongo que te habr? llevado alg?n tiempo llevarlo a cabo. Ahora solo toca promocionarlo ?no crees?.


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