You sit there, completely stuck and unsure of your next move. You constantly ask yourself “should I turn left or right?”
Embraced by social familiarity and a comfortable living by any average standard, you often struggle with a dull heaviness of an uninspired life. You mentally scan your list of fulfilled basic needs:
3.Clothing? double check
4. Family? Fabulous friends? Yes, They are there.
But why the itch, then? Why do you still crave for something unknown and undefined when really, you are among the 10% of the world’s population that lives on more than $10 a day? More often than not, you struggle with “shouldn’t I be grateful?” Yet another sun rises and you again move along to the generic beats of your status quo lifestyle.
Let me tell you the story of my friend, whom for the purposes of confidentiality, I will refer to as Abal.
Abal was a vivacious young lady; loving and kind, and full of thirst for the world around her. She was also an unrelenting advocate of personal health: she meditated daily, exercised religiously, and ate sensibly.
On the outside, Abal was a shining star.She had a picture perfect modern life-marriage, house, car, and career.
But on the inside, she was crumbling. She knew this isn’t the life that she wanted or one that honored her true nature. It was as if she was living a version of someone else’s perfect. Instead of companionship, she felt like she was tied into a legally binding contract with a non-conversational roommate. Her materials comforts only served to physically tie down her wanderer spirit. And worse, her emotional distress manifested into physical ailments. What started off as occasional body tremors developed into full-out panic attacks and inexplicable bouts of fatigue. Her loved ones were just as concerned about her mysterious illness as she was and in an attempt to make sense of this unusual physical phenomenon, they came up with different causal hypotheses:
“She’s got the mono virus!”
“It’s a five year post-partum depression!”
and my personal favorite, “She’s bewitched!”
Several years of medical tests, couch therapy sessions, and voodoo potions later, Abal had had enough. She abandoned her comfortable and predictable life and plunged herself into the unknown. She left everything that she had accumulated in all her adult years and started afresh, in a new city, among people she didn’t know, and in a culture that was far from what she was accustomed to. “It’s crazy, I know,” she would say, “but this feeling of wanting a life that is a true reflection of who I am is impossible to ignore. It’s like trying to defy gravity. I don’t think it’s an intentional display of bravery. It’s just what I have to do to avoid death while I am still alive.” Her journey to her new life was long and arduous, and it was often marked with whispers of grief and near-hysteria, but she just kept pushing through. As soon as she acknowledged her authentic self, Abal found the courage to move to the beat of her own personal and uncompromised North Star. Today Abal has finally found the physical and spiritual space to live the most authentic version of her life out loud. She is no longer a hard core health fanatic, but she feels better than she has ever felt in years. Unsuprisingly, her strange ailment has also vanished into nothingness.
To make the long story short, I guess what I am trying to tell you is that a comfortable life does not necessarily equal to the best one. You have to find what makes your brain tick and your heart soar. Be willing to take more risks to find your own unique bliss. Go out and explore the world, even if it means your immediate back yard. Celebrate your quirky individuality and then go out and find your own quirky tribe and quirky space. Finding your inner peace is a gift for you, it’s for everyone around you as well. A happier you is a happier us is a happier they.
Because that’s the thing with self-love, isn’t it? Only when know how to love yourself can you know how to love others.