I felt something last week. I felt a new electricity, an aliveness that came to be when I saw a friend of mine. I’ve been denying this feeling for a long time, the need to be seen and heard and understood. Honestly, it’s pretty obvious that’s what I’ve been looking for. Everyone wants to be acknowledged. I’ve been telling myself I’m learning lessons from my current state when the reality is I’m just stuck in this pattern and tired of repeating the same day over and over again. When I saw my friend, there was simply a connection, an understanding that I hadn’t felt in a long time. It made me question where I was in that moment, the things I’m going for, and the type of person I really am. I had a moment where I knew I needed to sit and simply be with myself. I know I need to find who I am. I’m trying new things. I’m working on myself. I’m doing what I need to do and I understand now that it isn’t a destination. The identities we cling to are really good guide posts to help us determine what we want to do, but it shifts.
With that being said, learning who we are is one of the most difficult things to do. Our behavior is predicated on the identity we create and that creation comes from the environment we are in as long as a genetic component. But learning who we are requires an openness we are not taught because we are given the construct from the moment we are born. Humans are certainly not comfortable with being open because we risk exposure or being “attacked”. The truth is it takes time to figure out what is the right path for us and sometimes it takes seeing someone to remind us of who we really are. I’ve read before about how sometimes we can know people forever and we can be screaming what we need at them and not be heard. And then there are times we can meet someone and they understand us like no one else ever has. Time has nothing to do with it.
Seeing this person helped me realize that, in searching for ourselves and in laying the foundation, we have to have some flexibility. What worked for us years ago may not work now and that is ok. So much of finding who we are is creating a fundamental building block of what I want my life to look like—it’s the same for you as well and it’s what we’ve been talking about for a long time now. Yes, it helps to have someone understand us because they can give us support that we may not even know we need. But it’s more important to be aware of yourself so you recognize those people, and you form relationships with those people who know who you are. It’s about setting up a clear guide of what you will and will not do, what your day looks like, what actions you need to take that are aligned with who you are.
In these moments, it would be easy to spiral out, but we need to find gratitude and grounding. We need to be grateful that there is something in us that resonates with other people and that we aren’t alone. We have to be grateful that we grow. If we were to stay the same our entire lives, we wouldn’t progress and neither would those around us. We are meant to shape each other. And that dynamic changes with those around us. I guess at the end, it’s really just to say that we need to pay attention to how we feel. We need to know what makes us come alive and what alive means to us. We need to know those things that spark the fire in us so we stay in that alignment we’ve been looking for. Pay attention to the people who make you feel that way and go toward them.