Setting about finding your flame
So many people I speak with seem to be battling to find meaning or a balance in their lives.
Life is more than just work, eat, sleep repeat …so what is it they are not getting , what are they missing ?
For all of us at some time comes that burning question – Why am I here and What is my purpose?
I know I have spent countless hours reflecting on this and to be honest, it seems to be without a simple answer.
No surprise there either , the greatest philosophers of our times have grappled with these questions over the ages too, together with of course “How did life begin” ,“Why do we dream…”and perhaps “What happens when we die “…
I think it is far less painful (mentally) to just accept that We are here , Make the most of it ! (Too simple ?)
(These questions are surely the same as those that have tested our forefathers before us. Perhaps there lies an answer, furthering the human race ? One of the deep questions is and has always been, What is the meaning of this life?)
The answer unfortunately isn’t in a Monty Python movie either !
I have always been fascinated by happy people, I guess I have always wanted to know what their secret is but often there is no “secret”, the reality is that happy people just are.
They are comfortable with who they are or probably (most likely) just accept who they are. Comfortable in their skins is a rather apt description.
I researched this topic quite extensively over the years hoping to find some gem that I could pass on to my family (Could this also be part of the Why am I here …?). What I found was not surprisingly that thousands (millions ?) of others are also searching for answers.
For a few dollars per month you can find subscriptions that promise to answer all your Life questions.
Too good to be true…you bet!
The short and sweet of all these online experts is a handful of suggestions (by no means the only ones just the recurring themes)
- Do what makes you happy
- Stand for something you believe in
- Try to make a difference to someone/something
- Make yourself proud, be comfortable with who you are
Strange (but not really) the Neurologist at the hospital where I get treated has similar advice to me . Do what makes you happy !
In the beginning this just frustrated me, Mobility failing, coordination questionable, medication ineffective, side effects painfully present. How could I be possibly get to do something that made me Happy !!!!!
Flash forward, four years later I think I’m beginning to understand what he meant.
For me , music, family , friends, philosophy! ( maybe I should change the order somewhat …😊). For others the classic theme is artistic expression, painting , pottery , poetry …gardening.
I read an interesting piece by a chap called Mark Manson (No relation to Marilyn Manson…don’t worry).
He discusses many issues in a very direct (crass ?) fashion. Recommended reading for anyone who has some time on their hands and is not easily offended.
He wrote Everything Is F*cked: A Book About Hope!.
He is also a proponent of the “cross that bridge when we come to it” philosophy of life which although not my first instinct I can understand. (I digress…it’s happening more frequently these days)
I could imagine standing for something you believe in is subjective enough to have a hundred options although in its simplest form I believe it ought to be about having principles (or integrity, something I also wax on about far too often!)
This would be what drives activists, politicians, public servants (I hope!!!!)
Making yourself proud is an interesting one, for me the setting and achieving goals comes to mind, for others it could be the accumulation of …add whatever you like ( wealth, children, cars, first edition books, cats…respect even), living your life with Honesty and Integrity, Empathy…good behavior to make one proud (and happy)! It comes down to being happy with the reflection you see in the mirror-both Inward and External.
On the theme of making a difference… One of my blessings is to see the progress my children make. I have been truly blessed to have what I believe is a fantastic bond with my daughters and although I know they don’t share absolutely everything with me (a dad knows) , I have tried to share my life’s mistakes with them…to prepare them for when they make their own. After all, without mistakes in life there is no Learning.
I know I have made a difference to their lives and this makes me happy (always). I also know I try too hard to solve their problems…learning to hold back is both daunting and difficult , but necessary. I’m trying (and probably need to try harder not to be overbearing !)
Strangely enough, I have not come across much on the pursuit of wealth in the general writings on Happiness or Purpose although for a lot of people the dream is always of bushels of money and time to spend it ! The question will always be “How much is enough” or “When do I stop”…
This make be a misnomer but certainly without sufficient resources, life is decidedly more challenging. Finding the balance would be the wise answer.
This reflection could easily carry on and on but by now – comfortably listening to
It’s Three doors down, Be like that …
Yeah, if I
could be like that
Well I would give anything
Just to live one day in
In those shoes
If I could
be like that
What would I do?
What would I do? Yeah yeah yeh oh oh
“And if there was a moral to the song, it would be that dreams don’t always come true but sometimes they can. “If I could be like that, I would give anything. – Just to live one day, in those shoes.” Not everyone can or will have a better life, but maybe some of us can learn from this song and help others to find the light and perhaps live a dream or two.”
The pursuit of finding ones “place” is not a scripted process. It can take years to finally find that comfort, and its 100% okay, after all who else knows what or where you need to be to be truly happy other than yourself. The only thing you need to believe is that You are where you need to be.
“Finding oneself” is however crucial to being comfortable in your own skin.
Don’t give up if you don’t feel it yet, it will come.
For some strange reason this song comes to mind, I remember watching this during a trans-Atlantic flight many moons ago.
From the movie Still Crazy and Strange Fruit, The band that never was!
I live a life
Where all that I feel I am learning
Oh life, has been turned on the lathe
Reshaped with a flame that’s still burning
And in time, it’s all a sweet mystery
When you shake the tree of temptation
Yeah and I, I know the fear and the cost
Of a paradise lost in frustration
And the flame still burns
It’s there in my soul for that unfinished goal
And the flame still burns
From a glimmer of then
It lights up again in my life
In my life, yeah
I, I want my thoughts to be heard
The unspoken words of my wisdom
Today, as the light starts to flow
Tomorrow who knows who will listen
But my life has no language of love
No word from above is appearing
Oh the time, in time there’s a fire that’s stoked
With a reason of hope and believing
Keep rolling keep that flame still burning
Keep on rolling while the world keeps turning
Yeah, keep a’rolling
Yeah, keep a’rolling, yeah
I think I may have found my flame…. 🙂