After I left college, I had a bunch of options in front of me to pick for my next move — join the corporate world, continue my education or (like many of my friends and classmates) go travelling to “find myself”.
Now I’ve never been comfortable with the term ‘find myself’.
What the hell does that actually mean?
Who I am at 19 is not necessarily the same person I’ll be at 30, I can actually tell you for a fact now, this is true. Finding myself at 19 would have meant that I loved video games, eating junk food, creating random small businesses and clinging to toxic relationships — my values were pretty weak and more centred around what my hair looked like and if people liked me.
Whereas through everyday life experiences and age with more forms of wisdom and random curve balls, I’ve been able to discover more about myself.
I read a great quote from Tim Ferriss that went:
“You don’t find yourself, you create yourself”.Tim Ferriss
I couldn’t agree more with this as that’s precisely what happens over the course of our lives.
We learn through experiences and continue to evolve.
The ten thousand dollar Instagram beach snap
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 through 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 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.
Now I’m not saying that you shouldn’t travel the world to experience different cultures, connect with new people and have an amazing time. I’ve toured Europe, America and Asia too. I experienced some beautiful moments and gained a new perspective.
But don’t pin your hopes on backpacking for 6 months and expecting to figure it all out and become an oracle — sadly life doesn’t work that way.
Personally, my path was different from those around me.
I poured myself into literature, podcasts, and videos and embraced new people from different cultures to understand new ways of thinking and gain 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 sacred cave to chase enlightenment. I made the time to continually invest in myself.Tweet
Below is a quote I always ponder in relation to the who I am conundrum. Perhaps it will help you too.
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