Are you in a place in time in your life where you’re finding yourself? Maybe it’s professionally, personally, emotionally or spiritually.
If so, welcome to the club. I’m here to tell you, you’re not alone. Especially in these days and times.
I come across a lot of people in my line of work who are still finding themselves in life and it’s only getting more prevalent. There is a huge shift occurring right now in the world where the fabric of the traditional work place is being disrupted by technology.
This has a big impact on us as a culture and what we “do” for a living. So many peoples identities are tied into what they do for a living, that when what you “do” for a living is taken away from you, you lose your identity.
The one thing we can always guarantee and count on to happen, is change.
It’s critical to you and the world around you to embark on truly finding yourself right now. What I mean by this is truly finding yourself on a deep level is critical to your survival and ability to thrive in your highest good within this economy. When you do, you’re able to not only identify what work truly fulfills you but you’re able to spot growing opportunities where you can position yourself.
Do what you love and the money will follow?
Do what you’re good at naturally, align yourself with an emerging and growing opportunity in the market and then the money can follow.
If you don’t do the work you will be:
- finding yourself professionally doing work you don’t enjoy
- finding yourself settling for mediocre friendships or intimate relationships
- finding yourself with less than average health
- finding yourself feeling less connected spiritually
Overall, without doing the work of finding yourself, you will (ironically) find yourself experiencing far less satisfaction in your life than you’re capable of.
This can lead to mild (even severe) depression, low self esteem and simply a complete lack of inspiration about life.
Yeah that kinda sucks doesn’t it?
When you do the work required in finding yourself, you’ll notice you feel more grounded, more alive and with a sense of direction in life.
Hell, that direction may even be that you’re in no direction at all and there’s nothing wrong with that either. Work o’ holics find this place extremely difficult to cope with however it can be extremely therapeutic if work is your “drug” to escape life.
The reality is that we all want to feel a sense of satisfaction in our lives and believe it or not, we need the obstacles, challenges and struggles that show up in our lives too. Without them we wouldn’t need to grow and stretch our ourselves, and without those elements in our lives we wouldn’t feel a sense of satisfaction when we do move through them and come out wiser on the other side.
So you may be asking, “Ok Tony, I get that I need to understand this concept of finding myself, but what exactly does finding yourself mean?”
Good question, let’s explore it.
Finding Yourself, What Does It Mean
What does it mean…Finding Yourself?
To everyone individually, I’m sure it’s going to mean something different. So I’ll just give you my spin.
The way I see it, and have personally experienced it, finding yourself can be a lot like playing hide and go seek with your natural mental talents.
More on that in a second.
When you’re discontent with you, your life and maybe those around you, something just feels out of alignment internally. You can’t quite put your finger on it but you just know something isn’t right.
So what are the signs you may want to embark on finding yourself work?
- It may be a mom going through a mid life crisis after her kids are all grown and moved out
- It may be a young adult who is in the middle of a 4 year college education and realizing they can’t stand the major they are taking
- It could be an entrepreneur who just failed at their second venture in a row
- It could be an artist, musician or writer who can’t find their mojo that at one time was a source of their inspiration
- It could be someone who has done MLM for 10 years and suddenly realizes they feel stifled and non fulfilled with the work*
Think about those for a minute and ask yourself if you have ever questioned your direction. At one time, we probably all found ourselves questioning our roles and direction in life. (or lack there of)
Think about this for a moment. Your beliefs about yourself and the world are propped up by the stories you tell yourself on a daily basis and are reinforced by the emotions you put behind them.
How You Can Begin Finding Yourself
So now you know why it’s important to find yourself. You may even have a better idea of what finding yourself means, but how do you go about doing it?
“You can’t change your results without changing your strategy.”-W. Edwards Deming
Our lives are currently demonstrating our thoughts, beliefs and the stories we tell ourselves on a daily basis. We don’t always tell ourselves the best stories. Or at least I certainly haven’t.
You see, we confabulate things all the time and make up situations to fill in the gaps of our memory and then assign roles to people in our lives without their permission.
Yup, we do some weird shit as human beings.
All of these elements, along with the groups of people we align ourselves with and the media we’re exposed to, can influence our behaviors. So how do we begin to take charge and no longer be at the mercy of the world around us?
Below are 3 steps that you can take to begin finding yourself:
Finding Yourself -Step 1 Meditation:
Yes, it may sound woo woo but I’m telling you it works. Quieting the mind is one of the most important practices you can engage in. I do it every morning myself. I’ve been encouraged to do it at least 10 to 20 minutes in the afternoon as well and I’m implementing it. I actually feel a deep sense of calm in most cases and feel refreshed and energized afterwards.
Sure I have days where my meditation is turbulent and not as smooth however I still maintain my practice.
I’m able to witness much of what happens throughout my day and find it easier to respond to situations that arise rather than react. When you react to people or situations it’s because you aren’t grounded in yourself. You are at the effect of whatever it is that’s confronting you.
Quieting the chatter within you can lead you to a greater sense of clam and allow you to make space for the next two steps. You’re mind will never be completely quiet, however you’ll learn to gently nudge those thoughts aside and focus back on your breath. Meditation can very much be an ebb and flow scenario where you simply learn to ride the wave of your internal self.
Finding Yourself Step 2 – Values Work:
Values work is one of my favorite focuses these days as it really allows you to become clear on what’s truly important to you on a very deep level. Values could be a post all on their own however the high level idea is this:
- Where you have the most order in your life, you value the most.
- Where you have the most chaos in your life, you value least.
This way when you look at what your life is currently demonstrating you can see quiet clearly what you value least, based on the chaos around it, and what you value most based on the order you bring to it.
The key here isn’t to judge yourself or your behavior as bad whether you value certain things or don’t. The key is to observe it and discover if the beliefs and behaviors are in fact your own and if so to be at peace with it.
The key is to become clear on your values so you don’t attempt to put someone else on a pedestal and inject their values into your own and attempt to live your life through their values. I see this quite a bit in our western culture where we hold movie stars, musicians and models up in such a light and believe that’s what we’re supposed to do, be or have.
We’re led to believe if we focus on acquiring the material outside stuff then that is what makes us acceptable to others. This can lead to unconscious modeling behavior which ultimately leads us to living lives that aren’t on our own terms. It’s tricky because you may not even be aware of it.
This behavior always leads to a lot of chaos because you’re constantly chasing shit that isn’t really that fulfilling to you and you’re never fully satisfied even if you get it. It leads us to doing work we don’t feel good about and chasing after relationships that we believe will make us feel whole.
So you can see a model of how deep values can run and how they can influence our behavior you can see the 5 levels below (From Timeline Therapy: Tad James and Wyatt Woodsmall)
- Attitudes -Totally Conscious
- Values -Semi Conscious Level
- Core Values
- Meta Programs -Totally Unconscious
Yes it’s work but when you discover this stuff about yourself you take on a whole new level of ownership around yourself, your emotions and the direction you move yourself in. You’ll begin to align yourself with the activities, people and relationships that really resonate on a deep level with you.
Finding Yourself Step 3 – Natural Mental Talents:
This is by far one of the most exciting finds of this past year and it’s a pretty simple concept.
This concept comes from Jay Niblick of What’s Your Genius which is a book I highly suggest whether you’re struggling with aligning yourself with an entrepreneurial direction or a traditional career.
- Self awareness: Your level of awareness for your natural mental talents based on how you think and make decisions.
- Authenticity: Once you know your greatest natural talent, authenticity is how true you are to your greatest natural talents. How well you incorporate them into what you do and how you do it.
Pretty simple concepts but could be easily over looked as a solution to assisting in finding yourself.
Our work is a big part of our identity. At least here in the western world it is. I believe it’s a big illusion in the scope of things, however it is important to be doing fulfilling work.
Within What’s Your Genius the premise is this:
You don’t change what isn’t broken, you’re not broken, and you don’t need fixed. You just look outside of yourself and to the world and discover how you can leverage your non-talents with people who have that talent in support of your goal.
Make sure you awareness is of the talents you posses and don’t posses, so that your success isn’t dependent upon you “fixing” yourself and trying to integrate natural talents you don’t possess. Outsource so you stay authentic to your natural talents.
Maximize your dependence on your natural mental talents and minimize your dependency on your non natural talents.
That’s it in a nutshell.
The goal is to discover your natural mental talents so that you’re focusing on those, the work that aligns with them and a mission you can believe in. Whether it’s the mission of a traditional company, a network marketing company or you’re own business that’s fuel by your expertise.
This is what I meant earlier by playing hide and go seek with your natural mental talents. There was a time when you did what came naturally to you. Somewhere along the way you set that aside and did what “grown ups” are supposed to do.
When you purposefully discover your natural mental talents you begin to feel more on purpose and useful. You align yourself with people, organizations and work that reflects your discovery and natural mental talents.
Some people fall into this place but I’ve found, and this may be true only for myself, that I actually had to work at this discovery.
What If You Found Yourself
So ask yourself about finding yourself. Weird thought maybe, but go ahead and ask it anyway.
I won’t think you’re weird.
Try these sentence completion exercises. Write down at least 10 completions to the below sentences
- I deserve to find myself because
- If I found myself I could…
- If I found myself I would…
Write these out every night before bed and ask yourself each night after writing them down, “Were my thoughts, words and actions in alignment with what I say I deserve.”
- Could you consistently perform work at a level where you actually enjoy it?
- Could you attract relationships that before you didn’t feel you were good enough for?
- Could you begin that exercise regimen that you’ve been putting off for months?
More important would be willing to experience these steps?
I can assure you, you’re worth every step and you most certainly deserve to give yourself the gift of finding yourself.
Personally, where I recommend starting is with Step 1: Meditation
Calming the mind does so much for you emotionally, spiritually and even physically that it’s the single biggest thing you can do for yourself. It doesn’t cost money, it doesn’t require any special skills to start and it can provide you a big return on investment.
Yes, investment. You’ll want to invest 10 to 15 minutes in yourself first thing every morning.
Because you deserve it. It’s the single biggest gift you can give to yourself. (Hand in hand with loving yourself unconditionally)
I do my meditation every morning first thing. I wake, go to the bathroom and then meditate without fail.
It’s the one biggest factor in waking from the human dream.
I generally make it a practice (today) to do 30 minutes. It seems to fly by these days for the most part. Truth be told though when I started I sent for no more than 10 minutes and most of the time it seemed turbulent. Quieting my mind was challenging to say the least but I worked through it.
Also please share this with someone you care about. Forward it to them via email, or post it to Facebook and/or Twitter. I feel strongly about this message knowing there are so many people in need.
And finally leave your comments below and any suggestions that could benefit someone in finding themselves. If you’ve already began your journey of finding yourself then share your story below.