What to do when you’re feeling lost in life

We’ve all been there… that feeling of being lost in life, not knowing where to go, not knowing which path to take, not knowing who to trust, not knowing what is true and what is wrong; that sense of feeling lost.

It’s easy to get lost in that despair; to get stuck in that angst. Many people wallow in this space for years upon years. And instead of finding a way out of that space, they find coping mechanisms so that they can navigate through their life while carrying that angst on their shoulders.

But that angst will always boil to the surface in some form. It could come out as unprovoked anger, depression, blaming others and playing the victim, substance abuse, escapism, and countless other insignificant ways.

You have a choice.

You can stay stuck in your angst, or you can find a way out.

If you chose to stay stuck; that’s your prerogative. Just be aware of how you are treating the people around you, and the impact you are having on their lives. I implore you to consider this question: How would you truly desire the people around you to treat you? And are you offering that to the people in your life?

Perhaps you need time to grieve and work through your pain and angst. And that’s ok too. But when you are ready for better in your life, I encourage you to…

Find your way to a more fulfilling life

If you’ve read any of my other articles, you know that I am a huge fan of practical and actionable advice. I’m not going to blow BS in your ear telling you to just decide that you’ve got a perfect life, and then *poof*, you magically are happy! I think that’s a load of crap.

Going from feeling lost in life to finding fulfillment is not necessarily an easy process, but it IS a process worth undertaking – because YOU are worthy of that fulfillment!

So where do you start?

Step One: Figure out what matters most to you.

I’d like to share a little personal story with you:

I recently went through a brief battle with skin cancer. It was horribly scary to hear that “C word”! There was a potential that it had spread. I had to undergo lots of tests and appointments and finally surgery. The week after the surgery and before I got the final prognosis was the scariest yet. I was in pain physically (and emotionally too!), healing from the surgery and waiting to get the results to see if I was going to have to go through more procedures to rid myself of the cancer.

What I realized in that week was that it wasn’t the cancer that scared me the most, but that it was going through that experience alone that scared me more. I found clarity for myself that I could face ANY trial in my life, as long as I had people in my life that supported me mentally, emotionally, spiritually… people that had my back, so to speak. Finding that clarity was immensely helpful in finding a way out of my life circumstance.

Finding your clarity

So how do you find your clarity as to what really matters most to you?

It’s time for introspection; it’s time to get to know yourself and uncover your fears, your insecurities, and your coping mechanisms. You can do this by yourself through meditating, reading and/or journaling. You can do this in therapy with a trained psychologist, or you can do this with a trusted friend or friends. Another option is to find a circling group in your area that you can join. Circling is a practice of creating a safe space for a small group of people to work through what ever you’d like to work through; it’s essentially group therapy.

Some questions you can ask yourself as you begin to find your way to what truly matters to you:
  • What are your defensive strategies?
  • Why are you mad?
  • What makes you angry?
  • Why do you dislike yourself?
  • Who do you want to blame? Why is it their fault?
  • What are you afraid of? Why do you have those fears?
  • What would make your situation better?
  • Could anything in particular fix your situation?
  • What do you need in this moment?
  • Can you imagine a day where you would feel fulfilled? What does that look like?
  • Is it possible for you to love yourself unconditionally through all of this?
  • Will you allow others to help you through this as well?

It’s vitally important that you first figure out what matters most to you. And the beautiful thing about life, is that that answer will change from person to person, and it your answer will also change over time as you gain life experience. I encourage you to remain aware of your needs and your fears to stay woke in your life.

Step Two: Take action

Once you have an idea of what really matters to you, take action to move towards that. I encourage you to be creative and be bold. But at the very least, take baby steps in the right direction. There is no limit of the action steps that you can take to move towards what you need more of in your life.

Maybe you found out that you need a creative outlet. So go take an art class, start creative writing, teach someone how to play an instrument, join a local theater improv troupe, or simply just grab a pencil and paper and start sketching.

Need to improve your health? This can conjure up countless things, depending on your own perspective. I’m not personally a fan of all the fad “diets” out there. But if your health need improvement, at the very least start here: drink enough water so that you are properly hydrated, and move your body! Then follow your intuition as to what is right for you to improve your health.

Perhaps you need a better job? Start looking for jobs, send out your resume, polish up your interviewing skills, learn new skills that make you more marketable, and network, network, network! More about that below…

Need a friend? Relationships are the corner stone of our human existence. Honor that. First step is to be the type of friend that you would like to have in your life. Then, go out and engage in activities with like-minded people. Doing that over time, you will start to form bonds with some of those people.

Networking will change your life

No matter what area of your life you want to improve, networking will help you. Surround yourself with people that are already immersed in what you want.

If you want to break into the music scene to become a cabaret singer, then go seek out people in your area that are already doing that. Go see their shows, meet them afterwards and talk with them. Ask if they’re willing to sit down and chat with you. Then ask them questions about how they got where they’re at. Be curious to get to know their story, so that you can reflect on how their journey may or may not work for you.

If you are looking for a better job, then networking is essential. Applying for a job from a listing online hardly yield results these days. You have to know the right people. And most of the time, the better jobs are not even listed in online search engines. Seek out the people in positions that would eventually have the capacity to hire you into a job that you would love. Be up front when contacting them that you are looking to improve your career path and would love their advice on how to break into their field.

For those of you looking to improve your health in a particular way, look for other people that have done what you are doing. Ask for their advice and for their support. You should get some sort of moral support that way, if not more. Best case scenario is to surround yourself with people that are currently going through the same / similar journey and people that have successfully gone through that same journey.

Maybe you want to find a new group of friends. All of your friends in the past were from your soccer team in college. So, go seek out a community soccer league that you could join. The sense of team comradery from your participation is sure to form bonds off of the field as well. If sports are not your thing, then find something in your area that caters to one of your interests.

No matter what you seek in your life, networking over and over and over can get you there. Be curious about the person with whom you are conversing, and be reflective on how that can fit (or not) into your own life.

And then here’s the key step:

Take action!

Resilience-of-the-human-spiritGaining all of that knowledge of finding out what really matters to you and then learning ways of how to attain that in your life is great, but that which you seek will not come to you unless you move forward with some sort of action!

Take massive leaps or take baby steps; it does not matter. All that matters is that you DO something.

It may be scary to take that action, but remember this: you are worth it. You are worthy of fulfillment. You deserve it.

So do yourself a favor, and do it.

Lots of love to you all!
-Brandi
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