Who do you want to be?
It’s a simple question.
So why do we struggle so much with the answer?
When we were kids, we would give these answers with firm resolution, assuming the question referred to a career choice. We wanted to be doctors or pop stars or, in my case, a dentist. Looking back on that answer now I can’t help but laugh seeing as the thought of looking into ANYONE’S mouth is much more daunting than the question itself. But when did this simple question change, causing us to question ourselves?
Figuring out who we want to be has always been a challenging feat because getting that far means knowing who you are to begin with. And knowing who you are comes from every life experience, each shaping you in its own way.
While I am not 100% there yet on figuring out "me," I am surely traveling towards that destination. My journey has had speed bumps, construction signs, and breathtaking views.
In my time here on Earth, I have learned many valuable lessons, I hope that these will aid on your journey, too. Here are a few of my best tips for finding yourself, even when you're feeling lost in life:
1. Say Yes.
It is so easy to get stuck inside a bubble of comfort. I dare you to force yourself to step outside of your comfort zone, to try new things, and take on every opportunity that comes your way. Yeses can lead to a wealth of knowledge.
If you don’t believe me, I recommend taking it from the bestseller: Year of Yes: How to Dance it out, Stand in the Sun and Be your Own Person, written by Shonda Rhimes. (And here's a great TED talk she did that explains her "year of yes" concept!)
2. Don't take yourself too seriously.
Life is stressful enough, do not freak yourself out by being nervous about every little thing! Life will fall into place and you will be okay.
How I de-stress when I feel a little too serious? I blast some of my favorite bops and just rock out. In those moments when your eyes are closed and your body is moving like no one is watching, you will feel free and completely yourself.
3. Surround yourself with good people.
No one can do everything alone. As a human, you need people who care to be there, who check in on you "just because," and who are positive influences on your life.
When seeking out friends, you can think of it like a mirror: look for traits that complement yours in others, and traits you wish to possess for yourself. Friends can help you build yourself up and become who you're meant to be. One day, hopefully soon, you will see these new and old things come together reflecting back on you.
4. Learn to be selfish AND selfless.
Sometimes you need to do things that just make YOU happy. Remember the things you used to do (maybe when you were a kid or a teen) that brought you contentment. Then do them, while also looking for new things that make you feel that same inner-peace.
However, don't forget how good it feels to help others as well. Never forget to be kind, even while doing things for yourself.
5. Ask for help.
Yes, life is a journey, but it's the people who help you along the way that matter most. Take advantage of those who want to help -- they are there for you and they love you. They can even help you find yourself. (Sometimes other people can see us in ways we can't see ourselves.)
In my experience, it has always been hard for me to open up to people without fear, but take a chance and share how you're feeling! People will surprise you, if you let them.
We are ever-changing beings, becoming more and less ourselves with every interaction and experience we go through. But, if you ask me who I want to be I would say that I want to be someone who is able to not only uplift others, but myself as well.
Who do you want to be?
How are you going about finding yourself in college? Do you feel lost on a regular basis? Tell me your story by leaving a comment!