Today I’m sharing my personal journey about my pursuit of being my best self. Thanks for joining and I hope you take something away that helps you today!
I’ve been pursuing self development for a long time. My drive for it comes and goes depending on what chapter I am in at the moment. I remember my first big push to learn about myself and dig into my passions was when I transferred colleges. Talk about identity crisis! I went from being a division 1 athlete at a small college in rural Tennessee to being 1 of tens of thousands students at the University of Georgia.
Prior to this time, my life had a set path from playing on a competitive softball team growing up, getting a scholarship to play ball…and then what? To be honest, I didn’t spend much time growing up focusing on my inner passions like drawing, painting, photography or reading. Those notions weren’t my “ticket” to higher education. Sports was my life and it was my family’s life, all my sisters played it. We spent every weekend away playing a tournament spring through fall. In the winter, I played basketball to stay in shape. It was go go go for as long as I can remember.
Once I began life at UGA as just a regular student, I found Oprah and a book called “A New Earth,” by Eckhart Tolle. These two things combined were my big “AH HA,” moment. I realized that life was bigger than one thing (softball) and I had more control over my life than I had previously realized. While I honestly mourned the years lost not pursuing my heart’s calling (creative outlets,) I felt a renewed energy for life. I finally was able to do what I wanted because at this point, my biggest goal was to make good grades and graduate. That was the easy part – finding myself was harder.
The self development journey doesn’t end. There isn’t a final location where you’ll be standing and shouting “I did it! I figured out my life!” It’s about turning inward, it’s about being open to life and always continuing to learn always.
Lately, I have been on a mission to turn inward. Sometimes I don’t like what I see but awareness is essential to growth. I recently re-read “A New Earth,” and while I remembered the book, reading it now sank in so deep. I tried to recall what I had learned the first time I read it. My life has changed so much in the past 6 years since reading it that the lessons were different. I have a greater perspective having gone through more life experiences from having a few jobs, hustling my photography business to having a family.
The greatest lesson that I needed to learn from re-reading that book was to truly slow down and realize that “now,” is actually all we ever have. To go a bit further, being truly awake and aware in the present moment devoid of your ego/mind running away to think about something in the past or to fret about the future, is life altering. You realize that even though you may be anxious (I’m anxious a lot) about some future, potential situation, it’s just something your mind is THINKING could happen and when you’re present, those anxious stories in your mind go away. It’s not easy to detach from the stories/ego/thinking in your mind. It just kind of happens but lately, I have been trying to practice awareness and boy when I can be aware, my present moments are so much ALIVE. It’s like being in alignment with the universe.
I’m sharing this today in hopes that you, my friend and reader, will follow your heart wherever it takes you. Whether it’s pursuing your best self or following your heart to do stuff you’re passion about, be brave and do it anyways. I feel like “self help” or “self development” get a bad rap but I’m here to tell you do only focus on the opinions of your 5 closest humans and do it anyways.