Living authentically is trending at the moment. That’s all very well; and as exciting and obvious as it might seem, it’s not that easy.
You first have to know who you really are in order to be authentic. Most of us today live in a loop. Certainly those of us who live in cities that demand a 9-5 existence. You have to do the thing to live the life that you think you need to have. I’ve recently taken a gap for a few weeks. I’m not exactly on a mission to find myself; rather I’m trying to recognise myself again – to find my authentic core, the one that’s been missing for a while.
I was on a trajectory a while ago that was leading towards a more chilled-out way of life. I pictured myself making delicious scones for passing travellers while I spent most of my time absorbing nature. Things changed, however, and I landed up in suburbia. I never imagined myself living in a suburb, driving a car that’s deemed to be a station wagon, doing a daily job that requires commuting at the same time as everyone else. Granted, I’m quite lucky that I can come and go as I please, but I do have to get up at a certain time, find something appropriately elegant to wear, and get out there.
I took that road trip I’ve been dreaming of for years, and the two days of being on my own was an incredible start to seeing me again. The universe seemed to be in cahoots with my heart and brain, too, because the road was relatively deserted most of the way.
My little break from my normal routine is a bid to re-centre myself and find a happy balance between where I’d like to be and where I am. You see, where I am isn’t all that bad and I’m surrounded by people I love, so a complete change simply isn’t in the cards and I don’t necessarily want to escape. I’d just like to change the loop.
I don’t want to wake up anymore everyday with a hollow feeling in my stomach. I want to launch out of bed and sprint towards my day. That’s what happens when you realise what you really want in life and then go out and do it.
So as I begin to see myself again, I’m also re-framing my looped thinking – so I can fit my happiness and self into my current set of parameters. I have a business idea and when I see myself doing it, I feel happy. My spirit lifts and I can see all the details of the space. I can hear the buzz of conversations, the giggles, and even the quiet concentration. I can smell the coffee, the books, and picture the colours on the walls. Jumping from that to the reality is hard, though, but even the ‘hardness’ makes me smile.
I think I’ve allowed too many other voices to crowd out my own self in the last few years. Taking some time out alone helps to make your own voice heard.
So, wherever you are, whatever your dreams, I do hope you’re taking some time out to recognise yourself in all of it. Are you really living the way you want to – and if not, what small changes can you make that will help you re-frame your current existence into a life filled with . . . life?