About a year or so ago, my phone pinged as a new email landed in my inbox. The heading grabbed me immediately: “The meaning of life”, it read.
“Finally!” I thought. The universe had recognised that I, Turia Pitt, was ‘The One’. I had been handpicked to learn the truth – the question plaguing humanity for millennia – “Why are we here? What is the meaning to our existence?”.
Sure, an email seemed a little crass. I always imagined this moment taking place high on a mountaintop somewhere, the wind ruffling my hair, a sunrise blooming over the horizon before me…. but hey, I guess email is more efficient! And I’m not one to judge. You do you, universe.
I drew a deep breath. Looked over my shoulder to make sure I was alone, and clicked on the email.
Turns out the universe actually shares an email account with a 17 year old kid named Duncan.
Duncan, sadly, did not have answers for me, but a question.
“What actually matters in life?”
“Well, Duncan” I thought, “that’s a bloody good q, mate”.
In the years since the fire, it’s something I‘ve given a lot of thought.
But how would I distil that into one answer?
Something succinct. Something a 17 year old could actually DO something with.
I ended up answering it inside Good Selfie, my new book for kids and teens.
It’s the last q I answer inside the book, and it might be my favourite. Because it kind of sums up the whole book in a really succinct way (yep, I nailed the brief!).
This is what I came up with:
There are three things that I believe really matter to everyone:
We need to feel like we’re making progress – like we’re working towards something that is important to us.
We need to have strong relationships with people who make us feel good.
We want to feel happy and confident about ourselves.
Here’s what I’d like you to do with this.
Use it as a checklist.
Keep it in mind as you go through life’s ups and downs.
If you’re moving towards the things you want, if you’re surrounded by people who lift you up, and if you’re working on feeling confident, happy and strong – well, that’s when your life is gonna have purpose and meaning.
Now, note the key words ‘moving towards’ and ‘working on’.
This isn’t a perfection game, champ.
It’s a work in progress.
You’re a work in progress.
I am too.
PS – If you can’t already tell, I’m very enamoured with Good Selfie. Yes, I know I wrote it, so it’s a tad egotistical of me to say that I’m enamoured with my own book. But I’m really proud of it and I think the messages it contains are really important. I’m genuinely so excited and passionate about getting it out to the kids and teens of the world.
And getting feedback, like this, makes it all worth it:
“I read this book in one sitting ?. Ready to pass it onto my daughter to be the fearless and best young lady she can be.” – @cammomc
“Not only did my 12 yr old daughter LOVE it, I did too!” – @bkgrealys
“My 12 year old is currently reading your book and is LOVING IT! My 14 year old and 17 year old will be next ?” – @zaynabsaab
“It’s fab. I preordered for my 16yo. Thx for writing such a must needed resource xx” – @jopie38ish
“Books like this are so damn important. Thank you so much Turia ✨” – @margaridasousaramos
Good Selfie explores everything from creating solid friendships, to getting through hard times and building self confidence, and it’s available here.