If I tried to tally all the times well meaning folks say “Your young years are for finding yourself”, I’d probably mess up somewhere. Start marking cross tally marks after three or five straight lines. Or something.
What, exactly, am I supposed to be finding?
Were we born “lost”?
Maybe. In a sense, we’re born without direction. In most settings, this means you’re lost. But it also implies there is a destination–a known ending point.
If I am to spend my young years nomadically, how do I know when I’ve reached this undefined “yourself”? To me, this is what it’s all about. “Yourself” is a moving target.
Your existence is defined more by the journey than the destination. Has anyone stopped to think what it means to find yourself? What do people mean when they say this? Is there an ideal they have for you and that’s what you’re supposed to find?
Is there a point in life when you know all there is to know about yourself? I certainly hope this isn’t the case. The day you stop learning about yourself and about your environment would be a bleak day indeed.
It’s helpful to know who your most basic “you” is, but you should never consider yourself completely found. How can you leave room for more experiences and more growth without leaving yourself open for more discovery?
It’s always struck me as odd that this “finding yourself” thing can apparently only occur when you’re single. I believe part of yourself is reflective of the company you keep, friends or lovers. Maybe you discover that you aren’t quite as affable as you thought. Maybe you discover you’re a social butterfly.
Sometimes “finding yourself” is intended to mean figuring out what you like and dislike. Again, is there an apparent end point with that? Those kind of discoveries are lifelong.
I hope I spend the rest of my life finding myself. I don’t want to ever feel like I know all there is to know about myself or the people around me. Life is a jigsaw that doesn’t really end. You’re building your life’s landscape piece by piece, adding new details to the image. You don’t just find the last piece while you’re young and proclaim the puzzle solved.
What would you do with the rest of your life?
No offense if you’ve found all there is to find about yourself. I believe you just have to live your life how you want to live it and let in the new when it comes. Leave yourself open to finding more of yourself.