Are you feeling a little lost? Like you don’t who you are. How if you could just understand yourself better, life would make more sense to you.
If you could just know what you want – you know for a fact you’re smart AND strong enough to make it happen.
When you don’t know who you are, I understand, it’s hard to fully enjoy yourself.
I mean sure you can have a good time. You can do things that make you happy.
You can go places and feel good about them – but at the end of night while you’re laying in bed – you’re awake and wondering why…
Why once again another day left you unfulfilled and missing some important piece about you – that will make you happy, contempt, and almost proud of who you are.
You can TRY asking yourself, “What do I Want?” and “What do I need?” but that only leads to desires which I’m sure you’ve found plenty of way to fulfill those feelings.
What you want doesn’t seem to have a question – or else you would find it easier to get the answer you’re looking for.
I believe there are three different types of people with regards to finding yourself as it so eloquently relates to TIME:
- The Future people: Those who are constantly searching for themselves.
- The Past people: Those who “claim” to know themselves better than anyone else.
- The Present people: Those who have for all better purposes – found themselves and are fulfilling what they believe is their “destiny.”
The constants above are Identity, Destiny, and Belief.
- Who you are.
- Who you think you are.
- What you show to others (your persona.)
- What you show to your loved ones (family persona.)
- What feels like you are meant to do.
- What life seems to always do to you.
- Who you wish you could be.
- What you hope you’ll get out of it.
- Your “guidelines” or “morals. The parameters where you maintain to uphold or reinforce your identity.
- The means or ways in which you’re willing to fulfill your destiny or what you”re “willing” to do.
- How you convey your Identity and Destiny to others.
- How you convey your Identity and Destiny to the ones you are closest to.
How about a quick story.
I was at a sales seminar and part of the learning process meant we had to role play. I know, always “fun fun” in a room full of strangers and being taught how to sell something that makes someone ELSE tons of money.
The leader asked a few of us to pretend we were at our shop and another to be a customer. We were instructed on how to approach the person in such a way designed to not get a “yes” or ‘”no” answer.
In other words we were being instructed on how to only ask open-ended questions. (A skill I might add is not only directly related to dating but is also very helpful too.)
It’s tough when you have no idea what the person is doing there and I’ve found when you’re working you’re in a different mode. You’re not really there to “socialize” but they want you to act like it anyways. (With the customers that is.)
A few men stepped out and they did pretty good after seriously considering their question.
But one stepped up – a guy who was obviously against sales “tactics.” I had spoken with him during the seminar and quickly assessed he was enlightened in some way. Maybe not fully but his attitude certainly was relaxed and his words were charming. He was a pretty cool guy.
He got up, wrinkled his face a little and very succinctly proposed to the fake customer,
“What is your Purpose for being here?”
We all laughed. His voice was stern, upfront, and he didn’t crack even a hint of a smile.
That is until he looked down at me and winked.
Now of course we all know why we were there. Our company wanted us to learn how to make more sales for them.
And of course most of the time when you’re shopping you have a definite purpose and if a salesman asked you that question you could probably answer him quite clearly.
But our instructor did not like that answer. To him it was unfeeling. Sure you couldn’t answer yes or no but it didn’t fit within the parameters of the lesson – therefore was not appropriate or constructive.
You see, for that one day – His destiny was to teach us. ( Do his job.)
His belief was in what he felt was the “right” way to learn maximum productivity.
His identity was primarily a persona he designed or developed for himself which worked best to fulfill his “destiny” or “job” based on the “guidelines” his boss required.
So for every seminar he gives, successful or not, during the teaching process he has a definite purpose to him being there.
So where does all that fit in the bigger scheme of life?
How does that help you find yourself?
How can that make you sleep better, worry less, or understand your purpose in life?
How does that help you better understand why you’re here and who you’re supposed to be – while you are here?
Well first of all the sort-of “pyramid of life” allows us to break down our existence in moments.
You ultimate larger life goal or your death is at the top.
The moments exist as your climb to the top.
As you go through each moment you can narrow them down through trial and error or through the experiences you have already been through.
But you can never, ever, live the same moment twice.
It may feel similar but there’s way too may variables inside you and in the world around you for your experience to be exactly the same. Something about it will always be different even if your brain tends to smooth things over for you to stop informational overload.
Assume your purpose in one moment is as simple as walking to the other side of the room to pick up a glass filled with water.
Imagine it’s your destiny to drink from that glass. (As lame as that sounds.)
Your belief is that you’re thirsty and therefore to complete your goal you must stay within your “parameters” and find a way to get to the glass before you become dehydrated and die.
Without even knowing it or understanding it your identity suddenly takes on a non-influential role.
Because in this example it would appear your identity has nothing to do with it.
Like it has no bearing on achieving the goal.
Now… I didn’t introduce some weird circumstance.
I didn’t suggest the glass was locked behind a room and you need to sway the guard with your sexual ways to make him let you in.
But this part is definitely not an unrealistic thing because without water – you will die. Rather quickly I might add. In just a few short days.
It seems to me that when your focus is on getting the goal because you can not live without it (water) your identity gets lost.
And if your goal is to find yourself because life seems pointless without that – where does that leave who you are?
I suppose then “technically speaking” you can not find yourself by looking inside because this is how you lose your true identity.
This is why so many people look outside themselves – whether it’s spiritual, family, career, health, or emotional wealth to find their purpose. Like their destiny is to accumulate enough of those goals to feel complete.
Their identity is made to be a goal or a combination of more defined smaller goals in which to achieve.
All to create contempt or the state of happiness we’re looking for when we look to find our self…
When we feel good, we say “I feel good” and if not “I feel bad”.
The feeling becomes adopted as our identity.
Interestingly, there is a sense that our identity is always the same, we ignore the fact that all these attributes that we make our identity change all the time.
It seems to me this one of the reasons why such an approach to happiness doesn’t work.
We think happiness is to make feeling good our identity, but that feeling good is just a fleeting state of mind and can’t possibly last.
Over time we develop a strong habit to identify with our feelings or thoughts or judgements.
When feeling good inevitably changes to something unpleasant, then our sense of identity has no choice but to change to “I am feeling bad”.
How does ego work? by Bernie Schreck
Now that I’ve made the connection and assumed happiness for lots of people have almost everything to do with finding yourself, inwardly and outwardly – I feel like I’ve done a complete circle.
Rationalizing or trying to deduce logically a definite answer to finding yourself does in fact help explain the components, where they come from, how they are used, but does absolutely nothing to help you achieve the self-awareness you’re looking for.
Or does it?
I’m not a spiritual scientist or claim to be an expert in this field but I have done a lot of thought, call it meditation if you will, and long before my research brought me to study Buddhism I did find I was living (if there is such a thing) according to the ancient teachings and others too.
Honestly I felt I was doing the opposite of what I saw.
For example (with a compassionate knowledge towards those who may suffer much more than me) I would find myself driving down the street, smiling, laughing, taking in the scenery I’ve seen a thousand times and finding something fun and different – I would come home and smile just before I reached my house and I said out loud,
“Cool. My house is still here.”
I would find myself thanking (literally out loud) my car for getting me to my destination or just starting up in the morning.
Strange as it sounds years later my wife introduced me to her long time close friend and she mentioned being thankful and how every morning she wakes up to her daily prayers. I was amazed and surprised I wasn’t doing it according to her Jewish faith but stumbled upon something similar.
“Traditionally, Jews begin each day with Modeh Ani, a short, two-line prayer which opens by referring to God as the eternal and living king.”
Once I recall having lawyers on my butt because I was heavily in debt, driving to a job which barely paid me,no family living with me to call my own, no girlfriend, no real social life, my back hurt, my ears were not being cooperative and were making me dizzy with unprovoked episodes or Vertigo.
I had no heat in my home. I didn’t really own anything, I hadn’t received a hug or touch from anyone particularly sexual related in about ten years…
And yet for some reason I felt happy.
I realized years later it wasn’t because I believed I had found myself. Sure I spent years and had plenty of alone time to truly search for my purpose.
Thanks to everyone around me who has done so much work helping others – I NOW understand why I was happy during those moments.
Part of me enjoyed learning about myself sure… BUT:
Each day was new.
Each moment I touched, felt, experienced, was that and only that…. A moment to enjoy.
I was on a path of discovery, understanding, and compassion to anything and everything around me. And sure some moments were bad – but they passed just as the happy ones did too.
The whole truth of it all seemed to be – finding myself was not going to help me achieve happiness…
It was clearly the JOURNEY made me happy.
The paths I took were revered as each moment was revealed to me. Predictable or not I chose NOT to guess what was going to happen but to enjoy it as it happened…
For what it IS and not “what it was” or “what is was going to be.”
If you’re feeling lost – like you just can not find yourself, your destiny, and your beliefs are not guiding you for what seems to be the right way, you can always think, or allow yourself to just imagine for one moment – this moment…
Just how much freedom and simplicity actually comes from being lost because…
There’s nothing behind you, the future is uncertain, to your left is an adventure you’ve never taken, to the right is an experience you’ve never experienced before.
That leaves you with a simple understanding of the world around you and how in that moment you have no hope, no fear, and you are ultimately free just “to be.”