It would be safe to say that you can assume a lot about a woman by the books sitting on her bookshelf. And yet if you took a look at mine, you would probably think I was a 52-year-old divorcee in the midst of her midlife crisis about to embark on a journey of self-discovery in which I’ll find myself and make my ex-husband miserable he ever left me; except I’m not.
I’m just a 23-year-old, single college student expecting to find some direction in the pages of these guides, memoirs, and exercise books. And while it’s helped some, it seems I’m stuck with the rest of my age group in this state of collective disorientation, this state of unease and restlessness, of being in my 20’s.
When I start to think of the alternative, though, of having everything figured out and set, I can’t help but feel that’s even scarier than my current predicament of being so uncertain. What if I had nothing left to learn? What if I reach my peak by 24, my capacity for growth at a complete plateau? To me, this is the most terrifying.
I want to be clear that while life brings us plenty of chances for growth through the challenges it bestows upon us, we also must remember to seek opportunities to further growth. In other words, don’t be merely reactive, but create. And how?
Through the books we read, the music we listen to, the challenges we put up against ourselves, the people we surround ourselves with, how we spend our spare time, etc. are all food for our souls.
My aunt has told me for years on end that you never want to peak in high school or college, and for a while I agreed with her. Now I must amend her statement a tad and say that you never want to peak at anytime. The human spirit is equipped for constant growth, and if you even feel for a second that you’ve stopped developing, do not accept it and start seeking it.
As I wait to graduate from college in May, I had this notion for a while that once I enter “the real world” that I’ll somehow be exempt from learning, but I know now this couldn’t’ be farther from the truth. I want to be a student of life for life. Hell,
I want to be 76 and still be baffled by it all. Only then will I feel I did something right. So I encourage you to embrace being lost. After all, you can’t find something that was never lost, including yourself.
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