“What a wonderful thought it is that some of the best days of our lives haven't even happened yet."
No one is where they want to be in life.
After some recent reflection, I have come to realize that the way we are living does not seem to work for anyone.
Most of us work a 9-5 job, we either have a family or are single, we trudge home at the end of the day, we make some type of supper for ourselves, find some ways to entertain ourselves, go to bed, and the cycle starts all over again the next day. A lot of us eagerly await those 2 days at the end of the week; the time when we can do what we want.
But is this truly the best way to live, or are we simply surviving?
2023 was not an easy year for a lot of us as the economy seemed to be taking a downturn. In 2024, more warnings of an upcoming recession start to put us all in panic mode, making us cling to the jobs we hate so much. But hey, at least we have a job, right?
The problem is not so much with the job as it is in the knowing that we are made for something more. Even though we may feel lucky to have a job and may even have our "dream job", we may realize it is not all it is cracked up to be once we get there. We then think we should be somewhere else, and may start looking for other jobs or ways to entertain ourselves that help us overcome that feeling that something is missing.
We outsource so much of our thinking to society, our family's desires, and institutions that when we actually have time to think about what we truly want from life, we feel lost and overwhelmed. We get caught up in the noise of expectations, and then those expectations start to define us. Sooner or later, you wake up and realize you were going through life on autopilot because you didn't take the time to find a goal worth accomplishing.
The hard truth is that we are unfulfilled. While we spend all of our time and energy working towards making someone else's dream come true, we ultimately put ours aside. We are too tired at the end of the day to live life to our fullest potential, and if we do, we end up going to bed late so that we suffer the next day.
So you may be asking yourself, "What can I possibly do to turn my situation around? Is it too late for me?"
Follow your Intuition
You know that little nagging voice in your head, or that feeling in the pit of your stomach when something is wrong? Listen to that more often, your body holds innate intelligence to help steer you in the right direction. This is something that is not discussed enough in the modern world, but getting in touch with your intuition and knowing what you want and what you do not want is one of the most important factors in living life on your own terms. Every successful person, whether it is financial success or just someone who has achieved happiness in their lives, has had to sit themselves down and know what worked and what didn't for them; only then can you decide what path to take.
A lot of people would rather work for themselves instead of having to deal with toxic coworkers or bosses, but we fear the failure that may come with jumping into the unknown. However, this fear ultimately keeps us stuck in a place where we would rather not be, and the worst part is it keeps us there for a lot longer than we should be. We make excuses as to why we shouldn't follow our dreams (we have a family, we have a mortgage, life is uncertain, etc.) The truth is we are the only ones holding ourselves back.
If you truly want to be self-sufficient, you need to think of ideas that add value to society or solutions to a common problem. Work on becoming the best at what you do, market yourself and your service or product, and simply launch it out into the world. Of course there are financial costs to consider, but do what you can with what you have and take the leap despite your fears.
Get Clear on your Goals
What do you ultimately want from life? Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 10 years? When you start to think about what you truly want, you can start to take steps towards making it a reality. Nothing was built overnight, but working on something every day can lead to extraordinary results, as long as you are consistent and focused. Get clear on your goals, and you may realize they are more attainable than you may have previously thought possible.
We all have small goals that we achieve throughout the day, such as eating a healthy meal, getting enough steps in, or spending time with family. However, when we talk about goal-setting, the best way is to find something to focus on that is greater than yourself. The list of these goals can be extensive and range widely from personal goals like health and fitness to partnering with someone to start a business. Whatever goal you choose, make sure that it is something that you can continuously work on, even in small ways, and improve. Not only will a bigger project give a bigger payoff, but you will see a lot of growth in your own self as well.
In conclusion, we may not be where we want to be right now, but that doesn't mean it is too late to change direction. We do not have to be stuck in a life we hate. Instead, we can choose to take steps today that our future selves will thank us for. We can choose to aspire to something greater than ourselves, and go forward in spite of fear to carve our own path. Most of all, we should choose to take the risk, as we never truly know what is on the other side of the unknown.