No one teaches you this in school…and it’s unlikely your parents did either, although I’ve known exceptions. And no corporation I know of includes this in their new employee orientation nor offers it as continued education. In fact, through all phases of life, the act of discovering who you really are is an obtuse, indirect, almost accidental side effect to living as a whole. And it’s no surprise that it’s essentially a solitary endeavor in a not-so-very-solitary world. The dichotomy of this dilemma is nothing short of delicious.
Not only does it fall to your inner self to perform this necessary undertaking, which is nearly always performed decades past when it would be more useful, but sadly there are no guidebooks, maps, or checklists to ensure you’ve done a thorough job. You start out without a clue how to proceed, no idea where to look, never comfortable that you haven’t left something out or missed a vital component. Often you don’t discover any answers until much too late to affect necessary changes to fix dysfunctional annoyances in your life, yet somehow, hopefully, you discover who you really are just in time.
For many, epiphanies come later in life when it seems least useful. Time makes us all remorseful over lost opportunities or poor decisions made during critical junctures of life, yet at the time these events did not portend their full impact. Conventional wisdom states it’s never too late, but societal acceptance screams otherwise. In our hearts we always wish, once learned, that this secret wisdom of who we are was in place when younger. It’s cruel, ironic master that requires us to learn the very things we need from events that could have been prevented had we this knowledge. A classic catch 22 if there ever was one.
But all things move according to that secret plan we mere mortals remain ignorant of by design, and in compliance with a grand agenda that will always be just out of our comprehending reach. We can only live in the moment, measuring them not by how many breaths we take but by those that take our breath away, and be content to play when the sun shines and muse when it rains. Even though it may take us decades to discover ourselves, at least we can look forward to contentedly soaking up every second, knowing we’re finally on the right path.