Let me ask you a question... are you living someone else's life?
Often we go through life without any real sense of ourselves. We often look for outward or external affirmations and approvals to satisfy our inner world. But what is really important to us? If we stripped back all of our conditioning from our upbringing and our current influences including our work, our friends and social media, who are we really?
From an early age we are conditioned by our environment and 95% of everything we do today is formed out of learned behaviours and habits. Today, everything from what we say, feel, think and act is the result of what we were taught as children or how we were influenced.
One of the biggest influences we have on our lives were our parents. Whilst, of course they do the best they can, we have absorbed a lot of their beliefs and they are currently now sitting as our own.
We often find that the way we feel comfortable living our lives is the way in which we witnessed growing up. We often, unbeknown to us, seek the same path.
Sometimes we do not directly mimic. We saw our parents do one thing and decided that this was the hard way. So we made a choice to do it the opposite way. This hardened choice can affect the way we deal with our lives today.
Both these learnt behaviours can limit what we believe we can do today. We are not living our lives the way we would authentically if we had not had this influence.
It is not just our parents that influenced us, but people of authority, the religion we belong to, our direct social group and anything else we took of value. It is important to seek to peel back these layers and find out who we are without these influences.
Here are some questions to really help you get a little more clarity around this answer. Sit quietly and comfortably for 5 minutes. You can lie down or sit in a chair with your palms facing up. Shut your eyes and listen to your breath. Acknowledge thoughts that come in and let them go. Take your focus back to your breath. Do this for five minutes. Once you have completed this, you are now connected to yourself.
Answer the questions below. If you are having trouble finding the answer, go onto the next. You may need to sit quietly again and focus on this question. The answers will come. If you are not satisfied with what you have come up with, don’t worry. Your life is a continuing work in progress and the answers and meanings to your questions will forever change. It is essential however to know an answer that is important to you now.
Think about your answers and ensure that they are your answers, what you truly connect with and who you really are.
What is my life about?
What do I value?
What do I treasure?
What is really important to me?
What do I do in my life that is worthwhile?
How do I want to be remembered?
For more on finding out what is really important to you, head to The ART of Positive Thinking to discover more about yourself, your self talk and creating a positive mindset.