There are times in all of our lives when we feel like lost compass needles left spinning on Bermuda Island. We lose direction to our own lives and have no idea how to fix our compass. Realizing you are completely lost is a scary feeling, even the thrill of uncertainty dies after a while and having no where to go can creep anyone out anyway. This happens when we let the world decide for us for far too long. Sharing bits of your life and looking for advice is one thing and letting someone else take all your decisions for you is just another story altogether. whether it’s parents, family or friends, in the end you have to look after yourself and your life on your own and the practice should begin as soon as possible.
There are too many people in therapy today only because they have “lost it.” Lost the dynamics of decision making that steers our lives, lost the will to ideate and brainstorm. It seems easier to just let go and live your life with the flow. But if you don’t even know the waters you are floating in, the calmness of it can turn to storms any minute. Which brings me to the point of this article which is- Take your decisions and find your compass.
Fear exists only in our minds, we have all heard the famous quote by Eleanor Roosevelt but seldom do we apply it to our lives. Fear of being responsible for our own actions is a fear which gets shadowed in jargons of words like self-confidence and will. But ultimately it is fear of failure and being accountable for own failure which keeps us from doing what we want to do and how we want to do things. From things like clothes to questions of the kind of people you hand out with, we are always seeking legitimacy from our parents. And although there isn’t anything wrong in this since they rightly do get a say in our lives and have the experience to even guide us through things but the last say and the last word should be your own. Your own and derived at with rationale and logic not just an underlying current to rebel against everything in your life.
It all starts with little things, once you stop seeking approval and legitimacy for your actions from the world outside you will be more attentive to the world within you. It’s easier to listen to your own voice when the rest of the world falls into a silent lull. It’s only when you can hear your voice clearly and even echo in your head, you will be able to stand on your own two feet and prioritize your life.
Finding your compass to guide you through tough times and good times is akin to finding your voice. What kind of person you are, what and who you identify with most. Identity formation ultimately does lead to forming of a certain direction in your life. Once you realize what kind of person you are the decisions all become very easy and fall in perfect line like separate white dots which are only waiting for you to connect and form a meaning out of.
Friends play in important role in the kind of decisions you take. It’s rightly said Friends are the family you are given the liberty to choose so be careful while you decide to get close to someone. But don’t let anyone but yourself decide who you feel close to and who you want to get close to. Ultimately it’s about taking responsibility for your own actions, whether it is choosing your career or deciding on who is your best friend. Whatever follows these decisions falls on you and only you. Peer pressure has increasingly become an issue which reinforces the need to figure out what kind of person you are and what you want out of your life. Getting into things only as a way to rebel against your family, parents or even society should be steered away from at all costs. Whenever we are at such crossroads the important question to ask our egos is, do I want to let the world decide what I want or do I want to take my decisions with complete insight into my own self?
All said and done, finding your own direction and will in no way should negate the fact your family and friends do provide a perspective which you might be incapable of. It’s always best to talk to people you are close to and get a second or even a third opinion. Not going to your parents in case of emergencies is just because you have been conditioned with the idea that parents might be directing your life is plain idiocy. The idea is to find out the kind of person you are and then follow what your inner voice says and what your rationale says, if your parents and friends you feel can help you achieve that state where you are responsible for your own mistakes and merits then so be it!