I graduated from college with the world at my finger tips. The problem ever since has been figuring out what in the world I want to do. I am thirty years old and I have a resume full of jobs yet nothing I would call a career. Where is my focus? What does this say about me? “ That I don’t cut it in the professional/adult world?” “That everyone else has their act together and that I am behind?” “ Am I an Underachiever?” What does that mean anyway – Underachiever? Who set the standard for achievement that we all now define ourselves by? It is crazy that I should feel like less of a person because I don’t fit the standard mold of the majority. I want so badly to be “in the game” that I have been sacrificing all of my spirit and energy in an effort to catch up to everyone else around me. As a result I have become a slave to comparisons. I look at people in my same generation who have established retirement plans, life insurance policies and regular vacations to great locations ! and I find myself becoming painfully jealous. I start to feel small and unaccomplished because I, on the other hand, am going through life feeling suffocated and bogged down by the simple demands of everyday life. I cringe if my lunch expenses go over $5.00 and I dread the mail because it might bring me a bill that I am not budgeted for this week.

Every time I think I have found some sort of balance and simplicity in my life something usually happens that robs me of my feelings of security. Like hearing about a friend of mine getting a great promotion or hearing about someone else buying a house on the street where I long to live. However, in hind site, I can’t really use the word “rob” because that would imply that something was taken from me without my consent - when in fact the way I view the world around me is of my own doing. I am the one who has decided that other people’s success is a direct example of my failure. So I am left going through my days pondering the state of my life. Then it slowly starts to occur to me that yes - there may be people moving to a better station in life, but that does not mean that my life counts for any less. I have gifts to offer: I am a compassionate human being, I am a loving wife, I am a devoted employee, and a trusted friend. It is true that at this moment in my life I have le! ss of the things that I aspire for, but what I do have is a life that is open to the powerful world of Faith. Faith that each day will bring me new opportunities to attain the life I desire. There is the excitement of waking up each day believing that this may be the day that a new door will open for me. That this day may be one of the best days of my life.

However, there is no avoiding the feeling of anxiousness because I see this crazy fast paced world where I, as an individual, don’t always count for much. I am just an ATM access number that the cash machine doesn’t always acknowledge, a car insurance policy number or a past due cellular phone account number. This world operates by converting living breathing people into account numbers that are stored in computers. Computers that are subject to glitches, viruses and hackers. Where is the feeling of purpose and security in this reality where I could lose my whole identity due to a “glitch”. So everyone goes into this mode of self-preservation and does what ever it takes to protect their possessions and their position in life no matter who they hurt and I am left wondering how did we get to such a state in life where we don’t even get a simple wave of “Thanks” in the rear view mirror when we let someone over into our lane?

I tell you there are days I dread getting up because I know that no matter what I do to be a happy and positive person that their will be someone who will knock me down spiritually because of their utter lack of human compassion and consideration. How can I possibly express my individuality and explore my uniqueness in such a harsh environment. Then it finally occurred to me that the only way “to be myself” is be just that “myself”. Now you might be saying that this is a cop out and not a real answer, but in fact it is the only answer. Our society did not start out this way. There was a time when we left our front doors unlocked so that neighbors could come over and borrow sugar. A time when we wrote letters on pretty stationary and signed them With Love. It has been the actions of individuals that has tainted our society and it will be the actions of individuals who will set it right again. I am going to be one of those who works to make a difference. I am going to do this by! having pride in myself. By realizing that it is ok that I am not perfect. That even though I spill on my clothes on a regular basis and that I can’t parallel park to save my life that I am still a valuable asset in this world. So I am not going to let myself get lost in this world of “we” just because I have imperfections because nobody is perfect. Nobody.

We are all here for a purpose. Each of us has been given a body, a name and a chance. A chance to find joy in life. A chance to experience and share love. Now most of the world is not aware of my individual existence. I don’t wear stylish clothes, I haven’t won a Nobel Peace Prize and I am not your most valuable customer, but I do exist and I have something to give this world. I may not have all of the answers now, but my purpose path will be made clear to me when the time is right. I have faith that this world will provide me with all the opportunities that I need to create the life that I need and desire. Until then all that I have to do is just be “me”. I have my own destiny and I am not – I can not – let anyone else deny me what is inherently mine and that is my individuality. I am no longer going to let clever marketing campaigns make me feel like I don’t possess enough material things in my life to assure my happiness. I have come to realize that the secret to finding th! e “me” in this world of “we” is by realizing that I define my own happiness and successes. My true happiness may lie in a relaxing evening of reading a good book and sipping tea on the couch. My true success may be in going through a whole day without worrying about money. The point being that it is all up to me.

Life is too short to be wasted on worrying. To have peace of mind we must focus only on those things that we have control over. Everything else must be left to the fates. Our attention needs to be focused on honoring our spirit. Our spirit is what is important because it is what sets us apart from everyone else in this world. After all, my spirit is the only thing that I get to take with me when my time on this earth is through. Our spirits’ don’t care what we look like, the size of our houses, or how much money we have in the bank. Our spirits’ care about whether or not we feel love; that we have peace of mind and that we honor our individual talents and gifts. My ultimate goal is to get to a point in my life where I come to find that the person I admire most is “myself”. That I come to a point where I feel I have developed all of my individual talents and gifts. We can not let this world keep us from becoming the person that we were put on this earth to be. We all need to co! ntinually strive to find the “ME” in this world of “WE”.

Author's Bio: 

Maggie West
tsew2@aol.com