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It’s Okay To Be Unsure About What You Want In Life Once In A While

It’s Okay To Be Unsure About What You Want In Life Once In A While

Perhaps it comes with growing up.

Feelings that used to be simple became a myriad of complications. Directions that used to be clear gradually merged, twisted, and dispersed into thin air.

We used to whistle a tune before we head to work and get there feeling refreshed. Now most of the time we just feel numb. Apathetic, even. Work is dull, boring. We operate like a machine, never sparing more effort than what is needed.

Sometimes we feel drained, exhausted. It ceased to be “us”, and became “you” and “me”. You and I say the same things, only they come without the tinge of love or happiness.

We tried so, so hard to be perfect, and now we are lost, unsure about how to go on.

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We got lost when the harsh reality hit us.

Perhaps we lost ourselves when we stopped believing in the beauty of dreams, stunted by the harshness of reality, the burden of responsibility and locked them up with maturity as the jailer. So we started working at a place that constantly fills us with dread with our red, tired eyes staring back at me from the slightly reflective screen as our fingers flash over the keyboard.

Perhaps we lost ourselves when we started to care less about the person we love. What used to be a time to talk and share was filled with arguments or complete silence. We withdrew into ourselves, staring at the dying embers of love because we don’t know how to rekindle the flames anymore.

I am terrified. We are terrified of these gradual shifts in our lives when things no longer seem to make sense. That’s because deep down, we don’t want to give up. We all want to do something and change. We want to live happier, become someone important and create something of value. That is unanimous.

But taking an initiative could be just as scary. Could you live with yourself if what you did and changed, in the end, was a mistake?

To that, I would say boldly – so what?

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Cheers to our mistakes.

Years from now, we will be more disappointed with the things we didn’t do than the things we did. If we don’t have the courage today to explore, dream and discover new things and choose to stay in the depressing cage we are in right now, then what is the point of living?

Remember what got you here in the first place.

Ask yourself: why did you start doing what you are doing now? Is it because you enjoyed the thrill, the challenge of your job? Or is it because it has a decent pay, good benefits, and everyone else feels like you’re the perfect fit for this job?

“Oh God, the terrible tyranny of the majority. We all have our harps to play. And it’s up to you to know with which ear you’ll listen.” —Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451

If you started off being passionate about it, figure out what changed and find out how to take it back.

If you are doing something because it was what everyone thinks you should do and you don’t necessarily agree, then take a deep breath, and drop it. Life is too short to be doing what you don’t like.

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Once you decided to do something, do it till it’s done.

“Don’t try. Do. Or do not. There is no try.” – Yoda, The Empire Strikes Back, Star Wars.

Commit yourself fully. It is too often that we leave buffer after buffer to make sure we are safe even if we fall. Adult eagles would push their kids down a cliff so they could either learn flying or die. It may sound cruel, but sometimes we need to just close our eyes and learn to take that leap of faith. Whatever it is that you have decided to do, do it cleanly and don’t look back.

It’s okay to be not okay.

Asking for help is often portrayed as a sign of weakness. But who is strong all the time? So many of us mask our insecurities, our fear of being lost and confused with a stony façade and an iron will. Unconsciously, we have pushed the ones who care about us further away with this twisted strength.

But perhaps being weak occasionally is what makes us human. It’s okay to feel unsure about what you want to be. It’s okay to fall and sob. It’s okay to be vulnerable and tender after being hit by a sudden loss.

No one should carry the burden of being strong all the time. So share your story with your family. Shed some tears with your friends. Find your direction with your partner. It’s okay to say “I’m not okay”.

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It’s all about being honest to yourself.

We’ve all been lost and come across crossroads before, not knowing which way is the right way to choose. The thing is, it really isn’t about being right. It’s about being honest to yourself. It’s about doing what you want to do deep inside your heart. It’s about looking at what you have and who you have and be grateful. It’s about being proud of yourself no matter what you chose in the end.

Therefore, there is just one more thing to say –

Good luck.

Featured photo credit: Picjumbo via picjumbo.com

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Eamon Suen

Student, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

7 Powerful Questions To Find Out What You Want To Do With Your Life

7 Powerful Questions To Find Out What You Want To Do With Your Life

What do I want to do with my life? It’s a question all of us think about at one point or another.

For some, the answer comes easily. For others, it takes a lifetime to figure out.

It’s easy to just go through the motions and continue to do what’s comfortable and familiar. But for those of you who seek fulfillment, who want to do more, these questions will help you paint a clearer picture of what you want to do with your life.

1. What are the things I’m most passionate about?

The first step to living a more fulfilling life is to think about the things that you’re passionate about.

What do you love? What fulfills you? What “work” do you do that doesn’t feel like work? Maybe you enjoy writing, maybe you love working with animals or maybe you have a knack for photography.

The point is, figure out what you love doing, then do more of it.

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2. What are my greatest accomplishments in life so far?

Think about your past experiences and the things in your life you’re most proud of.

How did those accomplishments make you feel? Pretty darn good, right? So why not try and emulate those experiences and feelings?

If you ran a marathon once and loved the feeling you had afterwards, start training for another one. If your child grew up to be a star athlete or musician because of your teachings, then be a coach or mentor for other kids.

Continue to do the things that have been most fulfilling for you.

3. If my life had absolutely no limits, what would I choose to have and what would I choose to do?

Here’s a cool exercise: Think about what you would do if you had no limits.

If you had all the money and time in the world, where would you go? What would you do? Who would you spend time with?

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These answers can help you figure out what you want to do with your life. It doesn’t mean you need millions of dollars to be happy though.

What it does mean is answering these questions will help you set goals to reach certain milestones and create a path toward happiness and fulfillment. Which leads to our next question …

4. What are my goals in life?

Goals are a necessary component to set you up for a happy future. So answer these questions:

Once you figure out the answers to each of these, you’ll have a much better idea of what you should do with your life.

5. Whom do I admire most in the world?

Following the path of successful people can set you up for success.

Think about the people you respect and admire most. What are their best qualities? Why do you respect them? What can you learn from them?

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You’re the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.[1] So don’t waste your time with people who hold you back from achieving your dreams.

Spend more time with happy, successful, optimistic people and you’ll become one of them.

6. What do I not like to do?

An important part of figuring out what you want to do with your life is honestly assessing what you don’t want to do.

What are the things you despise? What bugs you the most about your current job?

Maybe you hate meetings even though you sit through 6 hours of them every day. If that’s the case, find a job where you can work more independently.

The point is, if you want something to change in your life, you need to take action. Which leads to our final question …

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7. How hard am I willing to work to get what I want?

Great accomplishments never come easy. If you want to do great things with your life, you’re going to have to make a great effort. That will probably mean putting in more hours the average person, getting outside your comfort zone and learning as much as you can to achieve as much as you can.

But here’s the cool part: it’s often the journey that is the most fulfilling part. It’s during these seemingly small, insignificant moments that you’ll often find that “aha” moments that helps you answer the question,

“What do I want to do with my life?”

So take the first step toward improving your life. You won’t regret it.

Featured photo credit: Andrew Ly via unsplash.com

Reference

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