Older: Navigating Adulthood and Rediscovering Direction, Zeal, and Purpose.
It is a gift to be alive, yet it’s complex being human. Even more demanding it is, being an adult. It is understandable why majority of society would rather follow the herd so as to not think for themselves. While the few who think for themselves, periodically find themselves lost (physically, in thought), burdened by the weight of navigation.
Ask yourself: Do you want to feel happy or do you want to feel alive?
Happiness is accepting the limitations others place on you, and making the most of it. There’s comfort in conformity. The baby eagle who lived happily with the chickens. Followers are more predisposed to the feeling of happiness.
Feeling alive is discovering who you are, identifying your limitations and exercising your option to go and to stay. This is the Eagle finding out whether or not, it can fly. Some Eagles won’t fly. It isn’t a matter of “if” and more of what they’d give up to fly. And, how much bruises it is willing to take to confirm its inbuilt abilities. Leaders of men are more predisposed to feeling alive, drawing others who lack such expression onto them.
What is the burden like for those who think for themselves?
The longer you live and increase in wisdom, you’ll soon reach the stage of “I don’t know”. A time in one’s life where you’re further from the ideologies instilled in you by your parents and closer to living a life mostly colored by decisions derived from you thinking for yourself, beyond childhood stories.
This transition signals the individual’s separation from the infancy thinking model — a place of “quick to answer” sharing “your opinion”, to a stage of (not so quick to answer) “I don’t know” — not because you are oblivious to an opinion or incapable of thinking. Instead, your thinking faculty is baffled by the realization that ideologies are not strictly one or the other.
You are now advanced enough to identify and consider the disadvantage of an advantage (for example: The number one sports team, naturally, has more people hoping they lose, than those who want them to win. In fact, being on top comes with an immense pressure to maintain perfection, with no excuse) and consider the advantages of the disadvantage (for example, is it then better to hold on to second best till the final game? So as to receive the preferential treatment of the underdog) . Life altering decisions become less simple.
While the prerequisite of reaching this stage demands that you go through enough experiences to form your own point of view on life and people. You’ve also had to educate yourself on how little a lot of the things you know actually are. However, when you reach this place (after all the knowledge gained), the person who forms their own opinion different from herd mentality, finds out it is difficult to know anything for sure.
It isn’t unlikely to choose your own path, be equipped with knowledge of different paths and expected outcomes, yet don’t know which path to take.
Figure out Direction:
Where are you going?
Look up, remove the sun glasses, where does it look like you’re going (in life)? Better still, where do you want to go?
By the next calendar period, where do you want to reach?
What are the things you’d like to accomplish?
What could you start that you’d soon wish you had started a long time ago?
Why did you survive?
What would you wish you had accomplished if you didn’t?
You lost your motivation to do anything? Where did you lose it?
If it’s still there waiting for you, would you go back to get it?
Have you done something difficult lately? Exercise, walk, help another?
Would you do something difficult with no reward?
Are you human, lack enough self control and do foolish things?
Do you have recurring activities you engage in at the same time, everyday?
Would you show up for yourself to accomplish something you want?
Could you want something enough, that you show how much you want it?
What is it you dont want that you do too much of, which ends up preventing you from doing enough of what you want to do?
Would you rather sacrifice what you don’t want, for what you want?
Can you be strong enough for yourself to not do what you don’t want, so you can do what you do want?
Is there anything exciting going on in your life?
Has any new way of living recently been incorporated in your life?
Or, is your head spinning out of control as you continuously run around the same circle?
A person suffering with no hope, why should they look up to you?
Why should someone who’s amputated, begging for food, hope that someone like you would someday have food, stories, wisdom, time to share with them? Why should a hungry child feel joy when they see you?
If all your responsibilities fell off, where would you fly to?
How high would you fly?
Would you, fly?
What would your children respect about you, apart from being their parent? Why would your future grandchildren look up to you?
Do you care to think beyond the foreseeable future?
Could you look beyond the crumbs in front of you?
When last did you want something bad enough?
Are you walking a lost cause yet refuse to turn around?
What would it take you to reach where you want to reach?
What would you give of yourself to get there?
Would you rather spend your life building a bridge to connect two cliffs?
Or would you rather find a path or cliff with a bridge someone else built?
What’s the greatest uplifting gift you could give yourself?
These are designed to blow air in your eyes, reducing dusts affecting sight. Those who create paths, rarely connect the correct path on their first try. A lot get lost, retrace their steps, then adjust paths to reach destinations. While some are on fools errand, creating paths where a reliable (sometimes, most rewarding) path already exists. Self deception is one of the toughest blinders ever cured.
Encouragement to those who are thinkers, observers and brave hearted.
Those who consider the implications, benefits of jumping off a cliff before they leap. While, it’s a lifelong journey to remind oneself about the complexity of life, as you continue to get older — remember that because everyone is doing the easy thing, does not make the easy thing a target to rebel against. Just as much, choosing an unrewarding and futile path for the sake of “thinking different” is neither noble nor wisdom but unwarranted suffering.
Pass it on to those who come after you, to consider for themselves. Decisions they make and the impact they want to have. For a life lived half way but with good intentions is at peace, and the life lived to full term with little or no experience or self discovery is oblivious to contentment.