I didn’t used to think before I lived. I just lived. I acted, reacted, followed, rebelled without really thinking about why. Sometimes this worked for me, but sometimes I didn’t like the consequences. Sometimes I looked back and felt regret, guilt, or shame. The thoughtless actions were just that – thoughtless – and often the things that I did weren’t fully done by my own free will.
I did things to please and did things to oppose or distinguish myself from others. I did things or didn’t do things because everyone was doing them. I wasn’t doing things for me – because I wanted to, needed to, or felt I should do something. “I” didn’t factor into it at all. I was a kite blowing in the wind, a puppet controlled by the whims of the world. It wasn’t working for me. I lost sight of who I was and what I wanted. My dreams and passions were replaced by other people’s dreams and passions, and because they weren’t my own, I couldn’t get excited about them. Life was pretty bland, pointless, and meaningless.
Through pure luck, I stumbled into an old dream and remembered what it felt like to live for me. That got me back in touch with me. It was the first circuit to light up on the circuit board that drives me. One dream led to another and each dream woke up several others. It brought the machine back to life.
Now, I try to be aware of my actions and why I’m making them. But the world pushes and pulls so sometimes I still get carried away and let someone or something else pull my string. When I go to far, giving into the pressures of what is expected of me professionally or socially, I feel myself losing touch with what drives me and life loses its flavor again. Then I take a time out and reassess who I am, who I want to be, and where I want to go. I know I am flawed, but if I’m true to me, I can stand being me and living my life.