“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today, I am wise, so I am changing myself." - Rumi
Every once and a while it pays to stop, think and reflect on the person you have become and are becoming. It is appropriate to assume that remaining the same person over time takes more effort than to accept inevitable change. I have been through many sets of circumstances that could not possibly leave me the same man.
Some scenarios were by choice, others were not. We’ve all heard the saying: “With age comes wisdom!” They extol. But not always. With age comes our experiences, at the very least. Those experiences reshape our worldviews, attitudes and perceptions until those too go into headlong collision with another set of experiences, beginning the process of self reconstruction, once again, like a building always under-going maintenance.
We can observe with certainty that our innocence and personality as kids changes by adulthood. Same for mannerisms – patterns of whether we fold our hands like mum, slurp our tea like Dad or walk with a certain stride like our siblings and friends, really do matter.
Later we would mimic those who are in the same class, work place and social setting on fashion style, work ethic and morals. Our vocabulary evolves with new words and slang to help us fit in. The environment cannot be escaped.
I have found it difficult at times to know who is the true me. 20-30 age range has taught me a lot about “Who do I think I am?”. It has also been a time to ask tough questions of myself, trying and failing until I am settled about what I have to offer in an ever changing world.
It is a feeling of speedy excitement about who I want to become, yet I am joined with feelings of daunt and scatterbrain. It seems a long journey and the struggle isn’t enjoyable after the initial inspiration. If my own life is like a building under-going maintenance, then it is like I am the foreman who is under-qualified and does not know which room to begin work in first. I wonder if you reading can relate to this.
I believe the sum total of our traits, traditions, religion, personal qualities, skills and culture quirks plays big parts in the trajectory of life today and in future. This of course is not a rigid idea nor is it meant to be simplistic. There is always room for massive transformations of life choices and directions.
Mistakes will be made, but we learn from them. It’s time to begin. Begin with who do you think you are.