It's not rare to find yourself not knowing what you want to do with your life. The trick lies in analyzing the situation and having a serious conversation with yourself to figure things out.
I’ve always felt so envious of people who look like they have everything figured out. Don’t you agree how easy and great it would be not having to worry about what to do with your life? One of my sister's best friends from med school is one of these characters I’m talking about. Both this guy’s parents are very successful doctors who happen to have the same specialty. So they have their own office where they work together and even built two more spaces for their children, whom they always wished might end up doing the same profession as them. While the youngest chose something for something as far to medicine as she could, but the eldest is following that arranged and planned life that he seems to be following in quite a natural way.
Now, you might think he probably fell into this career to please his parents, but actually he really loves what he does. Unless something extreme happens, all his life (at least in a professional way) is already settled and with a great economic future ahead. Sadly, this isn’t the case for most of us, and that wish to achieve that certainty in our lives can tell a lot about our own situation. Searching for our path in life is a journey filled with doubts, anxiety, nervousness, and, in some cases, a lot of frustration and despair.
Perhaps I’m as lost as I was when I finished high school. Yet whenever I feel extremely lost and confused about what to do with my life, I ask myself a set of questions. Sometimes they work, but at least they make me meditate and analyze what’s going on inside my head and come up with alternative or a new and fresh perspective on the situation.
Are you just going to do nothing and play the victim or stand up and move on?
This is my favorite. I love those judgmental moments that are so hurtful that they make you want to say I’m sorry and start sorting things out. Just to be clear, I just like them when I’m the one doing them. If someone came to me, even my family or closest friends, and said something like this to me, I would send them you know where. Now, this moment generally comes after some time of victimization where you just act stupidly to make people feel pity for you and solve everything for you. So, yes, that tough self-love comes in handy.
What isn’t working for you?
In a nicer tone, once you’ve wakened yourself that aggressively, it's the moment of self-reconciliation. What are we doing that isn't working for us or that has taken us to this situation? Is it your job, your school, partner, friends, or lifestyle? You have to go deep inside your head and find that tiny but extremely annoying rock inside your shoe that is making everything so crappy.
Is there something missing in your life?
Maybe there's nothing in your life that's making you feel lost, but instead, you feel like there's something missing, the final piece of the puzzle without which the image doesn’t make any sense. Ask yourself, what can complete the whole image? Once you’ve found it, just go for it, don’t hesitate.
Are we setting extremely high and impossible goals? Do we really want this?
Okay, perhaps before the crappy motivational speech I just gave, we should keep our feet on the ground. How great would it be if the cheesy phrase “there is not an impossible thing” was true? But unfortunately, and no matter how optimistic you want to sound, in 99% of the cases things aren't like that. I’d love to marry Brad Pitt and live in Hollywood with luxuries, or to be the Queen of England with dozens of corgis and monochromatic outfits. But no matter how hard I work to do so, it’s probably never gonna happen. So, don’t go for unrealistic and fantastical goals, because you’ll already know you’ll fail even before trying. Instead, go for the things in that picture you can actually accomplish. For instance, I could get all those corgis and outfits, but I won’t engage in an impossible task to become the future Queen of England, since that’s way too far from my possibilities.
Are we doing everything in our hands to change our situation?
Like 80% of what happens to us is mainly our fault even when we don’t accept it or when don’t really see it. The only one that can change things in your life is yourself, things just won’t happen just like that and waiting for something miraculous to change your situation is just lame. Get up, and think if you’re really doing anything you can to find the path you want to follow.
Is money the only thing keeping you from doing what you'd love to do?
This is something I’ve always asked myself and it’s kind of a Sophie’s choice scenario if you ask me. To start with, I know that I want to have money and be able to spend it on whatever I feel like doing so. But on the other hand, the things I love doing are not that well paid, so most of the times, I opt for jobs mainly that will give me the life I want, even if I have to put the things I love on the side or even treat them as a hobby. I know it’s not the best thing nor the ideal thing to do, but saving money and giving me time helps me do whatever I feel like doing. Now, this is an entirely personal thing, and I actually found a good balance to have both things. I mean, I can’t buy a yacht and travel the ocean, but I can pay my bills and still have money to get some nice things.
Are you happy?
Perhaps this is the most important question you must ask yourself, because being lost in life and being unhappy are not synonyms. You might be wondering what to do and that’s okay. It's something that happens to most of us, but if you’re unhappy, then there’s something you must do ASAP to change it.
What are you afraid of?
This one needs no explanation. Just think of what’s holding you back and why you haven’t found that boost to do the things you like. Fear is probably the worst thing to guide us, so just be ballsy and act.
It's okay to have no idea of what to do with your life. Questioning yourself is just the first step. That uncertainty is essential for you to start finding a path to follow and move.
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Images by @dfreske