Up until “adulthood” (aka post-graduate life), most of us live in the distinct time frame of a school year. Semesters, quarters, summer breaks…if a class is miserable, you know you’ll be done with it in December. If your roommate and apartment suck, you know you can move at the end of the semester. The chapters are short. There is always an end date.
But after graduation, at least for me, it was a wide-open expansive land of time and I guess it freaked me out more than I thought. I’m always afraid of being “stuck.”
Physically, in a relationship, a career, a city, in a certain environment. It’s not fear of commitment. Hell, I’ll 150% commit to something I believe in and if I think it’s a good thing. But it’s “stuck” in the sense of believing there is no way out of a situation that drains me of energy, positivity, passion and strength. A stagnant, negative relationship. A energy draining, anxiety-filled job. Scares the crap out of me if I ever think of getting stuck in either of those things.
But at the same time I have to laugh at myself. If I ever got myself in those situations, I get the hell out. I’m just that kind of person.
So what am I afraid of?
Being vulnerable enough to stay put for more than 6-months and see what happens? Being at peace and open to whatever the Universe brings me, whether that’s tomorrow or in 5 months?
It’s the no-end-date lifestyle that I need to get used to. In the past, I probably forced those end dates a little too soon and a little too often. I would get restless and scared that I wasn’t going anywhere or that I didn’t know what I wanted to do…so I would try and solve that by moving. Again.
I feel as though part of my restlessness is coming from the false sense of security I get when I move to a different city or job or apartment. I think that by picking up and moving, everything will be figured out. I’ll have left my problems and emotional angst in the last city. I’ll be in the right place…finally. I’ll find my true purpose…finally.
But it doesn’t work like that.
I realize that when I have those emotions to pick up and leave, to travel and explore (if I got a dollar for all the times I went on Hipmunk to find the cheapest plane ticket to Spain, I could pay for the damn ticket), it’s because I’m outwardly searching for answers I can only find on the inside. It’s a sign that I need to explore inwardly to find what I’m attempting to discover while on those daring, romantic adventures. I need to explore what is currently and presently surrounding me. Be present and real with it in that moment.
I’m where I am for a reason. The Universe is giving me all the tools to “find myself” right where I am. So by drastically shifting and moving my environment to “find myself,” I prolong the whole experience. Because finding yourself isn’t really a destination. It’s an everyday journey that we’re continually on. Yes, I believe one day we can discover our higher purposes and innate reason for being, but until then, finding ourself is being present with ourself. Where we are in that moment.
So as romantic as it sounds to “find myself” in a small cafe at the end of a winding cobblestone street in Italy or on a sunny beach in Greece…I’m not going to find myself any more than I would at the coffee shop down my street. Certainly, I can have grand discoveries or epiphanies or light-bulb moments while in those dreamy places, but it’s not going to lead me any closer to that forever elusive thing I’m trying to find.
Maybe if I stop searching, I won’t need to find anything. The answers are always here anyways.