“To live is the rarest thing in the world, most people exist, that is all.”
– Oscar Wilde –
Have you ever felt confused at 1 A.M in the morning, thinking about what are you going to do with your life? Have you ever felt that you could do a lot of fun and exciting stuffs yet you wonder, “Why am I still stuck in this routine?” Some of us may have been living in the same routines for years and have been yearning for a change but we have not yet found the way out. Some of us could have been excited at first after being involved in an activity that we love but after a while, we felt that particular activity only become one of those responsibilities that we have to fulfill in order to get by. Some of us may have become directionless, passionless, and aimless in life and we do not know why we still exist. Does any of this statement fit you? If it is, you should not worry because you are not only. A lot of people feel the same way. A lot of us may eventually live life without knowing what they should and could do in life. Why is it possible for some people to have never discovered what they are meant to do in their lives?
Our Calling and Purpose
Some of us may still misunderstand the difference between our purpose and our own calling. Our life calling is what we are meant to give to the world. We respond to our calling when we know what we have to do and become. On the other hand, our purpose is the reason why we exist in this world and all of the experiences, lessons, and understanding that we will eventually get out of our lives when we are no longer living in this world. Why is it important to know what ours are? Well, not only can it lead to changing the course of our lives, help us make better decisions, it also gives direction and meaning in our lives.
How Did We Lose It?
Some of us may have been brought up in a culture in which we learn that the only way to survive is to follow the norm of the environment around us. Our parents and our teachers suddenly become our social and personal guidance in life. We might often think that our parents or teachers always know what’s best for us and that what they want is what we have to do in our lives. In that case, we lost own unique voice that could actually lead us to our purpose and also deny our own calling.
Carl Jung, a famous psychologist, named the side that we often refer as the dark side of our personality as the “shadow”. A lot of us are afraid to face this side as it represents our weakness, deficiencies, failures, and our selfish drives. However, this side will actually help you discover the person that you need to be. The person that we do not like the most is actually the one that could teach us the most about ourselves. Unfortunately, a lot of us are afraid to embrace the changes that we actually need in living a meaningful life.
After knowing these reasons, the important question is; how do we discover or rediscover our calling that we might have lost before? The first and the most important step is stop living inside our own personal bubble. What is a personal bubble? A personal bubble is a world where we are the center of the universe. Everything that revolves is about our pleasure and comfort. Why is it dangerous to only live inside our own bubble? Simply put, our lives are not always about our own pleasure, comfort or refuge. If we continue to persist, it will be difficult for us to respond to our calling. Why? Because our calling extends beyond our comfort zone and it is never there to serve our own self-interest.
Finding your purpose and responding to your calling are only possible when we are able to see our life in a wider view. We no longer only care of our own suffering but also for the suffering of others. We may even realize that our suffering is trivial compared to others. We will also see that there is more to our lives than just to meet our own comfort and to avoid things that make us uncomfortable. In a way, we began to have compassion for all the living beings around us and all that we want is to help make the world a better place. We also learn to let go of our deepest fear such as fear of discomfort, anxiety, anger, and many more. All of these will lead to us producing our thoughts, words, and actions for the benefits of other people. For example: we exercise not only for our own well-being but also for the well-being of others (as we are mentally and physically healthy, we are more able to effectively help the people around us).
In the end, it is not about the skills you have learned or will learn. It is also not about the career you choose or will choose. We could learn way more than just one skill or only do one career because eventually we could always change our career and acquire more skills. In order for that to happen, we should not be afraid to be bigger than ourselves and only by that are we able to respond to our calling and to understand our purpose.
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Are you ready to respond to your calling?