“Aha” Moments

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As an average 20-something living in a city in the 21st century, there is little that is out of my reach. I’ve got endless opportunities, and that is both exhilarating and terrifying. I can do anything… but what is it, exactly, that I want?

Although I’m young, I have an idea of what I want from life. I didn’t always, but as I grow, my goals and aspirations come into focus more clearly. I want to experience the world, I want a family, and I want career I’d be proud to hang my hat on.

In Hollywood (think: Eat, Pray, Love), “aha” moments are beautiful and dramatic. They come after a long period of time spent trying to find oneself. My “aha” moments, on the other hand, are mostly just dramatic, following a period of intense frustration and mental breakdowns. They happen in my car, in my bedroom, and across the table at dinner.

I’m thankful for these messy moments, and here is why: I’ve never had to find myself inside the parameters of the perfect situation. I don’t need to be doing yoga in the East or eating a perfectly prepared meal in Italy to understand who I am and what I want. I’m in control.

My most recent “aha” moment happened on Valentine’s Day. I had just ended a breathy rant about my career frustrations, and how I could turn what I love into what I live. (You know that saying? “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” That. I want that.) The gist of the response that received: Do it. Boom. There it was. In that moment, surrounded by dozens of couples wearing red and trying to speak French to the waiters, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I can create the future that I want; I don’t have to find it. That was an empowering “aha” moment.

So, before you book your flight to Bali to find yourself, take a minute to think about what kind of self you can create.

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