Knowing Who You Are
Much of what I will blog about is the result of experiences in my life journey. While my journey is unique, in that it is my journey, everyone has their own personal journey, it is as unique as mine. While we are all different and as unique as our DNA, there is also a generic aspect to us, regardless of custom, colour or creed.
Getting to know yourself better will certainly allow you to recognize and appreciate your uniqueness..
I will share, with you, some of the lessons I have learned about myself, which have become so important to finding out who I am. I will share, with you, some of the thoughts and questions that I asked, which may help you in asking the right question at the right time, and hopefully help you in getting to know yourself better. After all, this blog is about “you.”
It is necessary to be mindful of everything that happens in your life. There is a purpose and reason for everything.
The Thought Process
It is easy to convince ourselves that we know who we are. I did for many years, but there seemed to be a missing link and I wasn’t sure what it was.
My Life was made up of good times, not so good times and bad times. It seemed that whatever the circumstances were reflected how I felt.
Gradually, I began to realize and recognize that circumstances were controlling me and dictating how I felt. In most cases that dictated how I reacted and interacted with people. I wanted to change that. The question was, how? There were many self-help books available and I may have read most of them. It did not fill the void.
I had a certain mindset that was difficult, or I should say, impossible to change. I began to look at mindset, what got me thinking more than anything, was a sign in front of a dry cleaning establishment. The sign read “mindsets are like cement, all mixed up and set.” It no doubt was there to catch people’s attention and perhaps for a laugh. That was not so for me.
I began to think, “I am living in a knowledge based society, yet I am an experienced based person.” This was evident by my reaction to circumstances. It also gave a certain reality to that sign, my mind dictated to my brain and I relied almost entirely on what I had learned.
I was failing to capitalize on my experiences. Like that sign, I had a lot of knowledge from so many different sources, which was what I was relying on. It was no wonder my mind was set, and mixed up, I was defending other people’s truth.
Looking For Truth
My experiences for the most part has shaped me, who I was at that time and who I am now. Those experiences were my truths. Everything I had read and learned was another person’s truth. This explained, for me, the lack of confidence I had in my mindset.
A lot of my information came from other people, I had not reasoned it through, to see what, if anything, was applicable to me. Because it came from an outside source, I wasn’t sure of the accuracy. Not being sure of the accuracy of what I was learning, caused me to defend this knowledge, if I was questioned.
It was never necessary for me to defend my experiences, they were accurate. It was my experience and it was a part of me.
Certainly for the most part of my life I was a traditional thinker, so I went with the societal mindset. I am a visual person, this caused me to analyze things to a certain extent.
I was never much of a critical thinker, although it is used very often to arrive at a truth. I am not sure it arrives at a truth. It presents a problem or solution in a different way. This may not be a truth, because it is still a part of an original mind set. It may be a truth, but it may be another person’s truth and that has limited value for me and could even lead me astray.
I began, without realizing it, to become more of a lateral thinker. This changed a lot of things and opened up a whole new world.
The dictionary definition of lateral thinking is “the solving of problems by an indirect and creative approach, typically through viewing the problem in a new and unusual light.”
Viewing problems in a new and unusual light was definitely the direction I took, although I never considered whether it was lateral thinking or some other way. I really never gave it any thought. I was thinking outside the box, in many ways I was letting go of the box. This can be nerve wracking, but doesn’t have to be. Many times we fight against things that happen in our lives that are designed to make us better.
The approach I took, towards problem solving and understanding mysteries about myself and the world I live in, took an entirely different direction. This was not planned or thought about, I just took a different direction.
With hindsight being twenty-twenty vision, it was the best thing that could have happened to me. The reason I bring in lateral thinking at this point, it is to articulate in some small way, how I have arrived at most of the material on the posts of this blog.
To benefit from the posts in this blog, it will be necessary to be open to more of a lateral approach to thinking.
Directions followed to get to know myself
There was a void I wanted to fill. At one point it was very intense. I buried myself in work I began reading many self-help books. I felt there was more to life than what I was experiencing, though I had no idea what it was.
I was involved in community, church and service clubs, looking back, it was all in an effort to fill that void. I was relatively successful in my own business. I had a loving wife and seven beautiful children, that I was proud of, and lots of friends. This all centered on people or things outside of myself.
The question was me, and the question I was asking myself, who am I? Finding the answer took many years. I now realize it need not have taken many years.
It is an accepted fact that seniors view things somewhat different than when they were young. Experience from the years lived, begins to change a person’s attitude towards life.
That attitude can be experienced by a young person, if there is a tendency to assess each and every experience, and what there is to learn from it. Experience does shape us and help us find out who we are, no exceptions. We are in a way hard wired for success, yet it is our failures and the negative situations that can make us, if we don’t fight against them. Those negative experiences have the greatest value, yet for me, I wallowed in my failures and pain. In some ways I was ashamed of my failures, or what I perceived as a failure.
I studied the different religions and the Bible, all of it was to no avail. If anything it gave me more questions than answers. I was in my thirties, I left my job to further my studies, this time in Theology. I asked questions, and quickly realized that wasn’t allowed. I guess I was the type of person that wanted an answer to questions.
When no answer was given, I was told it was a paradox. This didn’t satisfy, although I was not negative in my questioning, it was deemed unacceptable and I was labeled a heretic. When it comes to religion that label puts you outside the box and put me, very much on my own.
Looking In The Mirror
When you look in the mirror, the person you see is you, this post and subsequent posts is about “you” and getting to know yourself better. I don’t have any answer for you, my purpose is to encourage you to find the answer that is within you.
In each post I will put some of the gems that helped me find my sweet spot and hopefully help you.
My main thoughts in this post is capitalize on your experiences, especially the negative experiences, think things through, don’t be afraid of thinking outside the box.
If the experience is negative, you may have stepped out of the way or have taken a wrong turn. Use that to get back in the way that will take you to your destination.
I hope you enjoyed this post.
If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.
All comments are appreciated, and I will reply to all.