It has arrived: You've once again reached a point in your life where you are not sure what to do with your life. Maybe you've recently gone through a divorce or breakup. Maybe you've recently been let go by your employer or you quit your job. Maybe school has recently ended or your time studying abroad is coming to a close.
Regardless of what has recently ended, the stress and pressure of needing to figure out what you're supposed to do next can feel about the same. Here are some things to keep in mind when you're not sure what to do with your life:
#1 Nobody has it all figured out -- ever. Here's a hidden truth for you: Nobody has it all figured out ever -- and if they say that they do have it all "figured out" then it's likely that they are lying to you.
Yes, even that lady with a solid and stable career, with 2.5 kids, a dog, and a husband that makes good money. Yes, even that friend of yours who recently got married and is moving to Hawaii.
The reality is that even though we may appear to have our lives pretty secure and "figured out" there are always unexpected things that come up along the way. Someone losing a job or feels forced to quit for whatever reason. Someone gets a serious illness or has an accident.
Something unexpected is always bound to happen at some point or another because that is the nature of living. We simply just can't avoid it. So if you catch yourself thinking things like "Everyone else has it all figured out except me," then know that it is totally a false belief.
#2 There is no deadline to "figuring it all out." You don't have to have your entire career planned out before you can get started. You don't have to know everything that you want in life in order to able to have your perfect partner for you.
Life is about exploring and discovering. It's about allowing ourselves to grow and become better by exploring and testing out new things. Sometimes things stick, somethings don't.
The problem is that, for many of us, we take life too seriously. If something doesn't work out the way we hoped we beat ourselves up, say we're no good, throw in the towel, and never try out anything new again. That is the huge mistake!
The reality is that life is all about practice. If we make plans that don't work out or commit to something that fails then so what? It's most certainly not the end of the world -- it's a gift! It is the gift of learning what doesn't work so we can figure out what will work.
So don't beat yourself up about not having it all "figured out" right away. Life is a journey, a process, really, as are any "plans."
#3 Enjoying the present is key. The problem with "trying to figure out" our lives is that it causes us to be disengaged with the present moment. So if there are good things happening in our lives or windows of opportunities opening up around us, we can't see it cause we're too busy being caught up in our little mode of "I need to figure out my life."
So let go of the need to "push" yourself to figure it all out and allow yourself to simply enjoy life right here right now. Allow yourself to simply be and enjoy the little things in life -- a warm cup of coffee with a good book, a cool evening, the sound of birds chirping early in the morning, a dinner with a great friend.
When we just stop and smell the roses and allow ourselves to enjoy where we are we give ourselves the chance to fall into the natural flow of life. Which, in turn, allows us to better see and know what decision we should make next.
Take a moment now to stop and look within. How have you been stressing yourself out because you haven't fully "figured out" your life? What have you been stressing over?
Once you've identified what you've been frustrated about, ask yourself: How can I "let go" this need to "figure it all out"? What can I start doing daily to release this stress that I've been causing myself?
Share your insights in the comments below!