Trust me, I know how this goes.
You’re sitting at a family gathering, or meeting up with friends, or maybe even reconnecting with
someone you haven’t seen in a while.
At first, everything seems to be going great, but you know better. Your hands begin sweating, and you start racking your brain for every potential response you could give to that dreadful question yet to be asked. The plates are passed, drinks are served, mindless chatter goes on, then the awkward silence sets
Everyone’s stares now lie on you as someone pops the question everyone’s thinking:
“So… what are you doing now?”
Now I know they might have the best of intentions, but for anyone like me (an undecided still
trying to find their purpose in this world), this question could literally make or break your night.
Or at least it used to.
Lately, I have learned that the bolded red letters: “undecided”, that I used to fear, turned out to be the best word I could have written on my life picture at the moment. Of course, I’m not saying it’s better to make no decision than to make a decision…
…or maybe I am.
With society at its most ambitious, you and I feel this forced overwhelming need to pursue SOMETHING, it doesn’t matter what it is. Our families, friends, coworkers etc. all tell us that it’s best to pursue something you HATE until you find what you LOVE, because something is better than nothing right?
Well, it was this exact same “something” that kept me working at a miserable job, meanwhile, pushing off all my desires to travel abroad, leave my hometown, try something new etc. because I was afraid of how the world would see me if I did nothing.
What a concept –
Give all of your time to something you hate, and use the ONLY bit of time left (which should go
to you and your mental health), to find what you love to do.
Enough is Enough.
Well in 2022, I decided that I was done doing “something.”
I had spent years trying to find my ‘niche’ as social media would call it. I spent hundreds on skin care that I felt would make me look good enough for content creation. I was starving myself because I was completely unhappy with how I looked.
I didn’t get it. I did what everyone said to do. I stuck to the hard job, put up with disrespectful
crap from my bosses, paid my bills, and lived in an apartment in the city.
“Why was I so unhappy? Why had I still not found myself?”
That was when I realized that I had been waiting for my destiny to come knocking on my door. It
was like I was Rapunzel, and my purpose was breaking down the bricks of my tower; an instant epiphany worth dropping everything for, that would bring me popularity and financial gain.
I was impatiently waiting for something that would never come.
That same day, I quit my job with almost no money in savings, moved to Groveland CA, and
when I got there, I did absolutely –
I know this sounds terrifying, maybe even a bit too radical, but if I’m being completely honest, it was doing nothing that gave me the freedom to explore the world and myself. I had the chance
to question every thought or reaction that I have, to develop, to GROW. I spent my time working
at a resort that I found on Cool Works.
The housing was cheap, the nature was plentiful, and I needed to just get away. I needed to get away from Chicago, from the constant feeling of failure and never being enough, and the obvious discontentment that was poisoning relationships and the life around me.
When I got here, I learned what life is like in the slow lane. It’s peaceful, unrushed and utterly accepting of the pace that you’ve chosen.
Now, I’m not saying that to learn patience, you have to quit your job, leave home and exile yourself in
a forest, as fun as that may sound.
I’m saying that taking the time to be by yourself, without the influence of a 30 second video that tells you how to live at the flick of your finger, could just point you to the next rest stop on the highway.
Moving at your own pace, openly knowing and accepting your body’s growth process, is the key
to finding your purpose.
You might be asking, “Okay, but how do I move at my own pace when the world is surging forward?”
Do you think you’ll get left behind?
I felt the same way.
I used to say, “If I don’t speed up, if I don’t achieve success by this time, then I’m wasting my
time. The world is passing me by and my chances get slimmer the longer I wait.”
The more I thought this way, the harder I pushed myself. I also became increasingly more critical of my failures because I always felt like I was running out of time.
I’ll tell you a quote that a friend mentioned to me when I felt this way.
“Today is the tomorrow that you were dreaming about yesterday.”
Time moves at its own pace.
This means that no matter how hard we work, or the amount of pressure that we put on ourselves… time will still take its time.
Knowing this, wouldn’t it be so much more fulfilling if you just take the time to enjoy the journey?
You wouldn’t embark on a road trip planning to speed the whole time, because you’ll miss the beauty around you.
It’s a difficult word to swallow because we don’t always want to wait for an outcome we’ve been looking forward to.
Patience was and is still an ongoing struggle for me today.
With society constantly shoving the “new and improved” way to do things into our brains, we begin to forget the real definition of things like self-care and self-love.
The Truth about Self-Love
Self-care involves more than just your skin. It involves living an authentic life with intention – according to your own expectations.
How can we learn to take our time? To be content with the pace of our own development?
When I struggle with contentment,
I say this:
“Skin won’t heal in a day.”
“Bodies won’t change in an hour.”
“Routines can’t change instantly.”
“Success won’t happen just because I want it to.”
Everything takes time. Lack of patience will only make the journey to finding yourself much more difficult to endure.
How do we even begin to understand the concept of patience when society is all about “the hustle?”
Well, in an effort to understand this concept, patience has become my new form of self-care.
Self-care is discovering ourselves through this beautiful journey of trial and error, and experiences.
Self-love is trusting yourself enough to pick up the pencil and write your story at your own pace. Learn to be alone.
Begin to celebrate the smallest achievements, and to cherish change.
Be okay with not ALWAYS being okay, because no one is.
Embrace the path that you take to self-discovery, or you’ll end up living the fast life to a road of regret.