In life we are faced with many ideals and messages about the person we should be, how we should live, eat and dress. We go through life abiding by a checklist just because someone said so. We never question why we should not wear white after labor day, or why we should not eat our dessert first. We simply mull about living and secretly becoming a robot. All the while we are thinking we are living and being the best we can be. Why is it that we settle and never think outside the box????
I was challenged by a dear friend to do just that. We were having brunch and he jokingly asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I casually laughed off the question and continued to enjoy my omelette. He followed up with “seriously, what do you want to be when you grow up?” My response was I don’t know? He said exactly, we don’t know, and often are not given a chance to figure it out. I thought Uh Oh, he’s about to get deep on me and I would soon find out I was correct. His narrative when a little something like this.
He: “How did you know you wanted to be in the field you are in now?’
Me: “I really didn’t I just kind of fell into it. In college I wanted a job that made a lot of money.”
He: ” So you were driven by money instead of choosing what makes you happy?”
Me: “Well I was looking for something I could do that would make me money, thinking that if I had money I could do the things that make me happy.”
He: “How’s that working out for you?”
Me: (laughs nervously and thinking is he a mind reader) But I reply “It’s okay”
He: “Has that money made you happy yet?”
Me: “Depends on the definition of happy”
He: “What makes you happy?”
Me: ” I have absolutely no idea at this point and that is truly sad.”
He: “You know what makes me happy? Doing what I truly love and that is helping people, being carefree, trying new things, and just being spontaneous. I believe I can do anything so I am not afraid to try things. I have started businesses looking to make a quick buck and it did not go as expected, but the current one is doing very well. You know why, because it’s not work to me and it makes me happy,and I am not in it for the money. I love the work I do. I am very happy and I get true fulfilment helping people. My million dollars comes when someone tells me how something I said has changed their lives.”
Me: “That’s good for you. I am glad you found your thing. Not all of us are lucky enough to do something we love as a career.”
He: “Oh but you can. There is nothing stopping you but you from doing whatever you want to do. The key is figuring out what you like to do and turning that into a career if you choose.”
Me: “That’s easy to say, you have already figured it out. How can I figure it out when I have all these bills and other responsibilities. It’s not as EASY as you make it.”
He: “Why not? You are the only one stopping you. You are using fear to make excuses for you to stay inside a box. Why are you afraid to step out and do something that makes you happy? Isn’t you life supposed to be lived on your terms doing the things that you like and making a difference? What is keeping you away from your destiny? Why are you holding back on your dreams and life passions to fill a dream that has been sold to keep you bound and brainwashed into thinking you have to fit one certain mold?”
His statement left a lot on my mind and a lot of food on my plate as I suddenly lost my appetite. I was thinking if someone asked me what I wanted to do if I could do anything, I honestly have no clue what I would say. What does that say about me? Am I lost? Wasting my life away? Am I truly living? All these questions ran through my mind. How I am going to make a difference, what would I teach my future children? Am I truly happy and proud of the work I do?
I do agree with my friend I am the only one holding me back. There are so many wonderful things I used to do that made me happy that I do not do anymore. I asked my self why and I have absolutely no answer for. The only thing I could think of is that somewhere in life I lost my happy. I let life and career push the little moments of joy aside. I made a committment to myself to come up with a list of things I used to do that I would like to do again. Once I have the list I will start doing them and let that provide me inspiration and get me back on my happy path. I do not have all the answers, but I certainly on a mission to figure it out.