Who am ‘I’? is a question each of us should approach from two angles; initially from a perspective of self-discovery, taking inventory of our unique personality traits – likes dislikes, passions, motivators, wants, hopes, dreams and aspirations. And other unique characteristics that make up the finger print of our individual soul. And then from the angle of defining yourself; What do you want to be? – What do you want as your legacy? What if you past from the land of the living to the great beyond could you reflect back on with a sense of pride and achievement and say ‘I’ did that?
In order to define yourself a level of internal fortitude needs to be mustered. You’ll need to take ownership of the piece of real estate that by default falls to your care, the physical circumference of which belongs entirely to you – your own body. Your body like any other vehicle is only of use when possessed by a person with the initiative to take it some place. That person, that someone in this case is you. You in fact are not a body but you are a soul, your unique personality is beyond your physical body. A personality is made up of a mind and a heart. Not a brain or the heart that pumps the blood. But the mind with which you think, and the heart with which you feel. Also known as your conscious and subconscious.
The other component often neglected and overlooked is the ‘human will’ the right and ability to choose. When you bring into consciousness what is in the depth of your subconscious, and choose by an act of the will to live congruent to that truth, life becomes a holistic experience that is lived in line with your true feelings and reflects your genuine desires therefore bringing about true fulfilment.
This is why people meditate. Meditation; sitting still and focusing on your breathing is an act of focusing consciously on something that occurs subconsciously all the time. This bringing subconscious activity into conscious awareness shouldn’t stop with our breathing. The more aware we are of what the subconscious drives and impulses that motivate us are, of the things that characterise our unique soul, the more we are able to expend energy and time living a life that feels to us like a fit.
You are the master of your ship, in order for the vessel to go where you want it to go in order to live on purpose you’ll need to get into the driving seat of your own life, you’ll need to take the reins, and steer your life in the direction you want it to go. No one else can do this for you. No parent or teacher, spouse of lover. No boss or employer. No guru or spiritual figure, no god, spirit or angel. This responsibility falls squarely on your shoulders. The more absolutely you take charge of your destiny the more responsibility for your own life you take, the more you put yourself in a position where you can be happy with the life you lead and feel intrinsically a sense of satisfaction and a deep internal awareness that the ‘I’ that is ‘you’ is really you showing up, not some caricature of someone else’s imagining, someone else’s dream husband, son, disciple, employee. But your idea of what your best life looks like. This is the starting basis of authenticity. This is the beginning of living a life outside the shadows and in full view unafraid and unashamed because who you are is who you want to be and what you do is what you want to do, so you can throw the entire weight of yourself behind it because intrinsically you believe in you. What a new way to live. We are not taught this, – of course not – and we don’t teach it either. We all have too much invested in trying to make each other fit the agendas we have for one another.
It’s time therefore to; ‘live and let live’ – really. It’s time to choose ‘life’ for ourselves and give others the right to choose their own path. This perspective is extremely liberating.
In order for us as human beings to mature, to ‘wake up and grow up’ we need to learn to individuate. Western civilisation had been criticised for encouraging a sense of rugged individuality, lifestyles that are not tribal in their approach to living, its felt that we lose out on the connections that human beings enjoyed in more primitive times. There may be some truth in this but for any individual at any time in history who has left a mark a distinct characteristic is that this individual expressed their individuality, did something separate from the crowd, something more, something exceptional, something worth remembering. And if you are to know yourself and express the essence of your true self, you’ll need to individuate, you’ll need to eliminate dependency upon others and develop a sense of autonomy and take up responsibility starting initially with responsibility for yourself and in steering your ship in the direction you want to go.
To do this effectively you need to know yourself, your limitations, your personal strengths and weaknesses, you’ll need to recognise that this is an ongoing process and be prepared to be in this for the long haul. Give yourself the gift of your own attention, make your own life your primary project. You are a work in progress, the more you take charge of this process and own it the more on purpose your life becomes and the more fulfilling and meaningful it will be.
I encourage you start today.