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TWLOHA Day

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Ask Yourself: What Did Life Teach You Yesterday?

I thought I’d implement something new into my blog posts. No, I don’t mean the Facebook “Like” button and the Twitter button, though those are pretty cool and I urge you to use them with reckless abandon. Wink wink. Nudge nudge.

But all joking aside (for now), I decided it was time to try out a theme apart from TiLT.

Welcome to the first of Breadcrumbs’ Ask Yourself entries!

from here

I’m the sort who is constantly brooding over some nonsense or another, so it only makes sense that I would eventually entice my readers into doing the same. Hopefully, though, the questions that I ask will have meaning. Here’s the game plan:

  1. Post an entry every week or so asking a world-shaking, life-altering, brain-challenging…or, okay, maybe just interesting question.
  2. Post my response to that question. This may be part of the entry or simply a comment.
  3. Invite readers to do the same.

As for where these questions will come from, well…that will vary. Sometimes I’ll get them directly from other sources, sometimes I may draw inspiration from a favorite blogger, and sometimes they’ll come straight from my own ponderings.

Sound good? I hope so.

Today’s question is from Thought Questions, a site which asks a question a day with the help of a beautiful image. I intended to flip through the site to try and glean some inspiration, but found the very first question to be quite pertinent to my own life.


What did life teach you yesterday?

Yesterday wasn’t the best day for me. I was feeling the lowest of my lows—that is, mostly, lost.

I can’t know and won’t claim to know the way most people operate, but I can tell you that, for me to get through my life successfully, I need to have a sense of purpose. I don’t always keep this goal in the forefront of my mind, but it’s there for me to refer back to when I need it. For me, everything has a raison d’être. We may not be able to see it immediately, but it’s there. Thus, I think it’s very, very important for an individual to find his or her reasona purpose, a passion, the thing that makes you come alive, the thing you can offer the world, the area in which you absolutely shine—and chase after it.

Well, for the past couple of days, I haven’t been feeling that purpose. Instead, I’ve been feeling sad, trapped, mediocre, useless, lonely, and more than a little on the hopeless side. It seemed like I’d lost my raison d’être. There isn’t one particular thing I can blame for this; it was a culmination of all the stuff that had or hadn’t been going on in my life.

I’m not going to say that I did some Blue’s Clues steps, came to a magical epiphany, and will now be focused and positive for the rest of my life. I’m inclined to believe things don’t really work that way. What I did realize is that, no matter what I achieve, I am always going to have my moments of doubt, my moments of feeling helpless and confused. It has happened before and it will happen again. But the great thing about those moments is that, when you finally do zone back into focus, you return with a renewed vigor.

“Ah,” you’ll say, peering through the undergrowth and gnarled trees of self-pity, “There’s the path! Now, I’ve been thinking about the best way to get over these roots…”

And so yesterday’s downward spiral gave way to this morning’s relative calm of sitting down and figuring out where to go from here. One thing about plans is that they have a tendency to change. The life purpose you carved for yourself in fifth grade is probably not the same one you’re chasing now, and in any case, there is more than one way to get somewhere. You have to find the way that works best for you, and sometimes, that means watching in fear and awe as the old way breaks down.

When I was little, I wanted to be a singer-songwriter. Then an English teacher. Then an author. Then a writer with a day job as a graphic designer. Then a writer with a day job as a psychologist. Then a psychologist who maybe wrote on the side. Now I’m not sure what I want to do—I love to write, I think psychology is one of the most varied and interesting subjects of study on the planet, I’m an activist at heart, and, hey, I still sing all the time.

But it doesn’t really matter what I end up doing. See, under the rich chocolate coating of all of the things I love is one thing I love even more: people. I want to give my contribution to making the world a better place for us to be. Whether that happens through my writing, through counseling practice, or through some questionable singing ability is much less important than that it happens at all.

I’ll leave you with this song that’s been tugging at my heartstrings today.

Don’t forget to leave your answer to today’s question in a comment! (You don’t need a WordPress account to leave one.) Also, please tell me what you think about the idea of having these Ask Yourself entries. I’d love to hear feedback! (:

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