Coming Full Circle…
One of the biggest challenges that presents in our personal journeys is that we strike to leave our own unique fingerprint upon everyone and everything around us. It can be difficult or perhaps even insurmountable due to the sheer volume of people around us. Out of the roughly six billion people, somebody somewhere is done the exact same thing we are trying to do. Well, the odds are that is the case, anyway.
But, one thing that I believe that shouldn’t dissuade you from leaving your own distinct impression on those around you is that the unique blend of character and personality traits that makes up who you are can’t be duplicated. Every single person on this planet is unique. Therefore, it stands to reason that everything that makes us who we are is unique to us as well. That includes our choices, relationships, and every other nuance about our identities that separates us from the person next to us.
There’s nothing wrong with being different. Going against the norm can be taken as a biological imperative. Everybody wants to live their own life and I emphasize “wants.” But, we seem awfully content living in the shadows of those around us or emulating those we admire. It’s like being ourselves is an afterthought and abiding in the perceptions of those around us is the socially acceptable standard. Up front, it may give us something to aspire to but in the long run, it creates this illusion that being part of a crowd is better than standing out from it.
As a child, we get shunned for not being part of the crowd. We all got picked on for something and because we were isolated, we began to feel like we didn’t belong in the sense that something was wrong with us. It’s a mentality that gets carried on through our childhood and into our young adult years. Then, the paradigm flips and all of a sudden it’s an offense to want to fit into a stereotype. For some people who are less than properly equipped to transition (I was such a person… I didn’t really get it until my mid-twenties), it can be a grueling process to acclimate and become functional. It can be compared to common core mathematics as a modern reference. It creates such upheaval that it causes problems and adaptability, or lack thereof, can create personality conflicts. As someone who suffered through some of those, I can say from experience that it isn’t pleasant, fun, or easy making the changes necessary or growing past such infantile notions.
Like all processes, they have to be seen through to completion. Not everybody likes being told to “shut up and wait.” As they say, patience is a virtue. However, something I would agree with is that not everyone who is virtuous is patient. By no means am I advocating taking shortcuts to success. But, what I am saying is that we can’t rely on our own intuition or conscience to decide when the best opportunity presents itself. We can “leap before looking” and it turn out in our favor. Taking risks is part of life and it’s more necessary than we think it is. It’s definitely been a bigger part of my life now that I’m more likely to take them.
The biggest risk I ever took was looking into my own life and taking the journey of self-discovery. That journey has been filled with so many plot twists and detours because when I started, I felt like I had my life together. It may not have been the prettiest picture but it was a picture nonetheless. Looking at it in this particular moment, I can say that I’m honestly surprised about the path it has taken so far. Asking the right questions is crucial to paving your own path to personal growth. Going “off trail,” so to speak, can be dangerous and I can attest to that. However, I feel like this quote is a great way to conclude.
“You don’t know where you’re going until you know where you’ve been.”
Truer words have never been spoken…