In a few weeks, I’m going to be 29 (cue that scene from New Girl with Schimdt shouting “29!!”) — where did my 20’s go? But more importantly as I approach my magical 29th year, what have I learnt and was it just as they said it would be?
I didn’t find “myself” — I created myself
I read a great quote from Tim Ferriss about 6 months ago, that read “ You don’t find yourself, you create yourself”. I couldn’t agree more with this as that’s exactly what’s been happening to me over the course of my 20’s and it will continue for the rest of my life.
I’ve seen lots of friends & family who like myself have struggled with identity and have used various methods to try and find out “who they are”. The most popular one that most of us have no doubt been in contact with is travelling areas of the world and burning our finances in doing this to find “ourselves” and then return to our actual life to use that realisation to go forth and conquer. The problem is that I’ve very rarely seen anyone come back from their travels with any other learning, than they became good at burning money and taking a billion holiday snaps for instagram.
My path was different from those around me, I poured myself into literature, podcasts, videos and embracing new people from different cultures to understand new ways of thinking and gaining new experiences. The caveat for me is that I didn’t have to travel the world for 6 months and burn through multiple credit cards to live on a beach or in a scared cave to chase enlightenment, I made the time to invest in me and I’ll continue to do this till my last days as that’s how I’ll evolve.
The below is a quote I always ponder in relation to the who I am conundrum:
“True happiness beats in your chest. Work out what you like to do best and try to do more of that. Don’t torture yourself pondering the purpose of life. It’s here, it’s now and it won’t last forever, so enjoy it.”
I found mentors & fellow lunatics
When I was really young, like most young people I always thought I knew it all and didn’t need what they call a guide or mentor or whomever to impart wisdom on me. Thankfully that attitude disappeared before I hit 25 and I started seeking new influences, new ways of thinking and ultimately started to become more open minded.
Now in my opinion a mentor doesn’t have to be someone you have a face to face interaction with in your daily life. With the wonders of technology and the mass amount of media now available, people are able to spread their message and provide advice on a much larger and more widely available scale. I found my mentors in the form of authors and podcast speakers, these people spoke to me on a level which awoke the creative in me and developed my curiosity to learn and be more.
Some of my mentors through the form of podcasts, blogs and books include -Tim Ferriss, Joe Rogan and Marcus Aurelius.
People come and go, change is inevitable
One thing that has become more evident to me, is that change is inevitable and it will happen…often. There’s no more a better example of this, than the people who we surround ourselves with — I found during my 20’s my personality and ideologies started to develop, I noticed that I was removing alot of the personalities from my life that had been around me for sometime and this was an organic process.
We all change, the person we were at 23 may not and probably won’t be the same person we are at 26 and with that you will have a revolving door of people you allow into your eco-system. Some friends will come and go, serious relationships will absolutely come and go but this is all part of life.
Accepting that I’ll be surrounded by different people in various stages of my life was a big learning for me and showed to myself more than anything that I’ll be ok no matter what — as they say when one door closes another always opens.
I stopped giving a fuck about others opinions — RIP to the cool kid!
This was a hard one for me until my later 20’s. When I was younger, social conditioning and my upbringing had convinced me that life was about portraying an image of what you wanted others to believe you are. You had to be the best, always presumed to be better than others and you should strut around like a badass lion in front of others to show how amazing you are — man was that a load of bullshit.
As I started to develop my mindset in a more positive manner and surround myself with those on the same conscious level, I began to realise that all the circus of attention seeking and concerning myself with what co-workers and family thought of me, was a massive waste of the precious time I get on this planet.
In short, you are who you are, be awesome, do cool things and fuck what others think.
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