Rediscovering Yourself

Sometimes I feel lost.  Coming back home after 6.5 months of constant travel in places I’d never been to before was one of those times.  I felt relieved, confused, helpless, weak, scared, and worried.

Shouldn’t I have been bursting with glee to brag about my cool trip?  Climbing volcanoes in New Zealand, riding an elephant in Thailand, trekking rainforests in Malaysia, and working with some of my best friends on a farm in Australia are some of my most incredible, unforgettable, and priceless experiences to date.  I met some of the most inspiring people, tasted the most savory dishes, and saw the most breathtaking views.

And yet, after filling up with all these new adventures, I felt somehow deflated.  Disconnected.  Lost.

What was missing, I found out, was me.  I had just about stretched myself too thin, too many new adventures, too little familiarity.

I had lost sight of myself, a bit.  So, I searched.  And at home, surrounded by my parents, my friends, my belongings, my bed, my clothes, my city, my friends, my bike, my city, my photos, my art, and so on.. it was easy to find reminders of who I was.  I seemed to have forgotten my sense of self, what I wanted, and what I was doing.  But for the last two weeks that I’ve been home, I took the time to immerse myself in all of that.

I caught up with old friends, dressed up in my favorite clothes that didn’t come in my travel bag, went to my favorite eateries with my parents, rode my bike down my favorite trails, and sorted through years of old art.  The most awakening and inspiring parts of it all was reading all of my old journals, from childhood through to university and up to the present day.  It is extremely powerful to see and read your own story, to see how you overcame past challenges, epiphanies you had that still ring true today, and gain new insights by shedding light on old writings.  It’s fascinating to see your own evolution, and doing so helps you appreciate everything your past self has done for you to get you right where you are today.

When you’re feeling lost and stuck, sometimes it’s hard to motivate to do a lot, but it’s just like exercise–you whine and complain and procrastinate but once you’ve actually done it, you feel on top of the world.  You’re proud of yourself and it gives you a boost to do other things.  I forced myself to do all these things that my subconscious knew would make me feel proud and give me a boost.

It’s all about showing up, and in this case, it’s about showing up for yourself.