We all want to be good citizens of the world. We all want to make a mark with our life that says, “I was here.” We all want to leave the earth just a little bit better for having walked on it. But most of us gets messed up on what it is that we want to actually contribute in this lifetime to realise those desires.
Ask yourself this question:
Do I make my life happen or do I let life happen to me?
The answer to this question is the first clue to how you are making contributions to this life.
Making life happen requires planning. It requires deep thought and an understanding of who you really are and what it is you like and desire. But most of all, it requires you to have the strength and conviction to follow your own unique path. A path that will lead you to the very things you like and desire.
Not an easy task.
Everyone that will enter your life, from your parents and family, to your teachers and even society as a whole, will have a definite opinion about what it is you should be doing with your life. Some will be very persuasive using love, guilt and morals to bring you in line. Some will demand, and some will use subversive tactics to sway you to their way of thinking. All of them will believe they know what is best for you.
Only one person can ever know what is best for you. That is you. But how can you possibly know what the best is for you if you have never stopped to figure it out?
The first step to figuring it out, the most basic of tasks needed to begin this journey, is to learn to just be yourself.
To do that you must first figure out who you are.
Here is an immutable truth, you are a unique individual. No other person is like you, so there is no rule book. There is no set of instructions that says, if your just follow along step by step, the answers will appear.
You will have to take notice of your likes and dislikes, your fascinations and your aversions. Don’t question why you like chocolate but hate vanilla. Don’t feel guilty because everyone else in your family is athletic but you prefer solitary pursuits. It is not a competition. As an unique individual, there is no one that could possibly compare to you, so don’t even try.
If you want to make a contribution in this lifetime, you will first need to understand your uniqueness.
Imagine that you and another person witness two cars colliding. Both of you will have a slightly different re-telling of the accident.
Perhaps, subconsciously you like red cars better than blue cars and your eyes were focused on the red car as it crashed against the blue car. Your memory would be focused on how the red car was impacted.
Perhaps the other witness could not stand to see the impact and the possible carnage that may have resulted. So at the very last split second, he looked away. His memory would not have recorded the impact yet both of you would have said you witnessed the accident.
The point is that we all experience things from the filter of our own unique perspective. I can not be you and you can not be me. I may try to understand you. I may empathize with you but I will always filter your perspective through my own unique personality lens.
That is why it is so important that you understand yourself. Your contributions need to be offered from your unique perspective. That is the only way your contributions will stand out from the crowd.
Remember, people may not agree. They may protest vehemently and shout that you are wrong in your choices and actions, but they can not choose for you. That is why it is easier to just let life happen instead of making a life. Not everyone will believe in your plans. But if you understand your unique self, you will have a strong foundation to withstand the criticism.
It does not matter if the contributions you make in this lifetime effect the world, your neighbourhood, your household, or only you. What matters is that you consciously live your life as your unique self, because that is the best contribution that you could ever make. It is why you were blessed with this life and is the reason you are here on this earth in first place.