I had a moment recently where I was suffering from boredom. I don’t mean the I-have-a-few-minutes-to-kill-and-I’m-a-little-idle-right-now kind either. I mean a profound, what-the-hell-am-I-supposed-to-do-next-with-my-life kind. See, what had happened was, I’d spent the last few years working my ass off, checking things off my bucket list. While everything definitely isn’t finished on that list, a lot of my key milestones have been.
I had a baby and now I even get to spend more time with my son, I had a beautiful wedding (though I’m also divorced now, but hey I learned a lot about what NOT to do from my marriage). I’m a best selling author in a niche I enjoy for a subject I know a lot about – interracial relationships. I came to an agreement of sorts with the guy I’ve been seeing for a while now, so we don’t stress each other since we’re both busy, working professionals. I even finally get to have some degree of flexibility with my day job.
Recently, I also decided to stop obsessing and stressing over buying a house, because frankly I don’t think it’s a great financial decision for me and my family right now or any time in the near future, so I rented a house instead. Honestly, I think I’m glad I’m not a homeowner because it’s a lot of damn work! Also, whenever something goes wrong right now, especially if it’s major, as a renter, I just make a phone call and someone else handles repairing it and pays for it…
I’ve gotten to travel a little bit, and will continue to travel more in the coming months and years. I’ve survived a lot in my 21+ (lol) years of living and I have a lot to be proud of. When I looked back at how far I’ve come, from everyone thinking I’d turn out to be “just another statistic” as the child of teen parents, to having earned a degree from a prestigious top 20 university and basically now living the life of my dreams, I kind of started to panic.
So what’s the next big challenge for me? I’m still writing and of course I love it, but I was starting to wonder, what will I do next? As the boredom that descended upon me lasted for about three days, I took that time to not only self-assess and think, but to start planning.
On a much more philosophical note and on a deeper spiritual level, I started to ask myself what this all means. Am I happy? What’s my purpose here? How do I expand my vision of where I am now to get to who and where I want to be in the coming years? In other words, since I know I won’t be here forever, what will my legacy be? Will I have some enduring gift to give to humanity when everything is all said and done with my life?
Now don’t get me wrong. I wasn’t feeling depressed, I’m just a realist about how very mortal I am, despite my attempts to live as the fiercely independent, quintessential modern “Super Woman.” Actually, I was searching for something more, something seemingly intangible, or maybe impossible to answer about what being happy and fulfilled really mean to me, both for now and the long term.
Of course, it was at this time when it would have been hugely helpful to talk to my friends about all of this and get their perspectives, that everyone was all insanely busy with their own lives and all at once. One friend’s young daughter ended up in the hospital, another friend is planning her wedding/just got a job promotion/is still a new mom, while another friend just started a new job. It seemed that I was in this pondering stasis then all on my own.
Ironically, it was also at that time that I was assigned reading from my department at work, a book called “Delivering Happiness,” by the CEO of Zappos, Tony Hsieh. The book explores “profits, passions and purpose” and at the same time, as I was searching for a work answer, I speed read through the most pertinent parts of Stephen Covey’s book, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.”
The cohesive messaging from the universe in terms of timing, communal knowledge as I read these two books, and my own contemplating led me to a very important rediscovery of something I’ve long held to be true – the meaning of each of our individual lives is something that we ourselves design and then create. So as our thoughts become words, and our words become actions, and those actions become habits, every single day, we are defining our own destinies, manifesting everything that we dwell on – good, bad or indifferent. In other words, not only are we the architects of our own realities, but each of us has to assign the meanings to our lives. That can sometimes be very tricky, but it’s truly a challenge that I think is worthwhile.
So ultimately, what I realized then was that I wasn’t bored so much as I was unfocused. I had lost sight of “the why,” or my underlying reasons for doing some of the things that I’ve undertaken with my life. So now, I’m working to create my own personal mission statement. The main reason that I wanted to be a writer since I was 10 years old was because I want to connect with other people on deeply resonating, personal, and emotional levels.
Thus, if, when and where I can help others – through entertainment, such as my fiction writing, education, such as my blogs and other non-fiction work, I want to jump in full throttle and do that! This is also where a bit of the writer’s block I was feeling during my “bored” phase started to wear off. I was reinvigorated to self-direct towards a new purpose, a larger vision for my writing. To deliver happiness through gaining a clearer understanding of what connects us as human beings, and especially as readers and writers, and then continue to amplify these areas of connection in my work. Who knows? Maybe I’ll be an agent of change and/or inspire others to be so in that way too.
So herein begins yet another incredible journey. Until next time my dear readers, here’s to your continual self-improvement as well. Keep striving and keep thriving.
Cheers, smiles, and hugs,