Finding yourself can be a daunting task. The path to self-discovery is no less difficult than the path to the other side of a high mountain, but the journey is well worth it.
Self-discovery begins with sitting down with yourself and exploring your thoughts to figure out who you are.
Once you learn to do that, you might discover that you are only a shell of your old joyous, strong, and zesty self. You might also find that you’re a far cry from the person you aspire to be. It could dawn on you that you still haven’t found the meaning of your life.
Those things are exactly what you want to find out – where you stand right now in your life.
Then, when you begin the process of finding your true self, you are mostly taken aback by how much you have achieved. Along with this, you also discover what goals you need to focus or refocus on. Within that core lies the crux of self-discovery.
The following tips will help you transform yourself and evolve into a person who truly knows yourself.
Make a bucket list and start checking items off it.
Stay ready to challenge yourself in fresh ways on your journey to discover yourself. Make a bucket list.
A “bucket list” is a collection of experiences or feats that a person wishes to have or achieve over their lifetime. First used in 2006, the term came from the expression “before you kick the bucket” (a euphemism for “before you die”).
A bucket list helps you make time to do the things you’d most want to do and engage with your peak experiences.
Once you’ve written down the things you have wanted to do all your life, rank them in order of easy to hard. You may find that it’s easier to learn how to sketch high fashion than to make a new location your home for six months.
Learn and practice “self-inquiry” meditation.
Self-inquiry meditation is a technique used by many mentors to help people find themselves and their purpose. It recognizes that we are bound by both our mental and physical states, as we have learned from years of living various experiences.
When we meditate to connect with our inner selves, we can uncover what we truly seek outside those self-created boundaries.
Meditation is a simple, yet powerful tool to help you relax and focus on something other than your automatically appearing trains of thoughts.
In self-inquiry meditation, you sit in a quiet place and try to be “in the moment” by focusing on a single thing, like your breath or a particular sound. Mindfulness Meditation is a powerful and proven way to achieve this state.
Once your mind is still, and no more wandering, you ask yourself some simple questions:
- What is my true purpose in life?
- What are the things that I’m doing wrong?
- How would I want people to remember me?
- How can I leave the world a better place?
You may frame yourself some other questions too.
The objective is to investigate one question in one or more sessions until you have thoroughly examined it and found all of its answers.
You may write down your answers at the end of each self-inquiry session. Most people find that it helps you to gain a clearer sense of yourself, a deeper understanding of what you are feeling, and a more accurate view of reality.
Imagine the best version of your future self
When you imagine your future self, who and how do you see yourself? Do you see the same self or an improved self?
Being yourself can be a great way to make friends and have fun, and it’s not always as easy as it sounds. But often it prevents you from achieving things that are truly meaningful to you.
The key to being your best self is focusing on your core values and building relationships with people who value those same things. If you’re a “hard worker” and you surround yourself with people who just don’t get it, you’ll find yourself frustrated and unhappy.
Becoming a better version of yourself is not a simple task, as you need to ask yourself some tough questions:
- How do you want to be seen by others?
- What do you want to be known for?
- What are your strengths?
- What are your weaknesses?
- What are you passionate about?
Then set a goal for each dimension of your best future self. You might want to become more empathetic in the future so that you understand other people’s emotions.
You could opt to create your body in the style of a super-athlete. You might want to achieve a certain look: slim, radiant skin, and a gentle disposition.
The idea is to create a better version of yourself, one day at a time. It is the 1% Improvement Rule, as James Clear puts it:
If you can get 1 percent better each day for one year, you’ll end up thirty-seven times better by the time you’re done. Conversely, if you get 1 percent worse each day for one year, you’ll decline nearly down to zero.
However you choose to find yourself, there are some important things to keep in mind. First, figuring out what you want to be in the future is a process, not an overnight transformation.
Second, since we are all different, the best way to find yourself is to research extensively, try out various activities, and take risks. Third, you cannot follow every step perfectly, or else you will burn out and give up on yourself.
One last idea: Try to learn at least one skill that you think you will be terrible at, but it would immensely help you in stepping outside your comfort zone. It will force you to discover new aspects about yourself, such as your limitations, tenacity, and resilience.
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Our world is adding old people to its population count at an unprecedented rate in history. Sadly, young people hold a negative attitude toward the elderly and old age, forgetting that they will be there soon. So, how can you help yourself and your parents to age positively?
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Author Bio: Written and reviewed by Sandip Roy—a medical doctor, psychology writer, and happiness researcher. Founder and Chief Editor of The Happiness Blog. Writes on mental health, happiness, positive psychology, and philosophy (especially Stoicism)
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