When you feel like you have lost your way you can feel very alone and very confused; however, it is possible to feel like yourself again. Various events in life can make you feel lost and disconnected with yourself. Major life changes, stress, traumatic events, having to care for others, and having a major illness or injury can all make you lose sight of who you are. When you feel like you have lost your way, it can feel like you are in the middle of the ocean with nowhere to go. However, it is very possible to reconnect with yourself. You just have to take steps to find yourself.
1. I Am…
When you feel like you have lost your way, a great place to start is to make a list of who you are and what you like. Try not to think about it too much. Just write down whatever comes to you. For instance, it can be as simple as “I am a daughter.” It can also be much more specific. You may choose to write, “I like to go on hikes when it is sunny and warm so I can wear my favorite cap and enjoy the nice weather.” Write a couple pages worth of these statements, and then don’t look at them for a few days. When you reread it you will notice things about your personality that you may have forgotten. This will help you begin to reconnect with yourself.
2. Reconnect with Your Beliefs and Values
As children grow up they start to care what other people think of them. Sometimes, this can manifest itself as suppressing beliefs or conforming to other people’s beliefs. After a certain amount of time passes, it can be hard to remember what your own beliefs and values are. To figure out what is important to you, ask yourself what your political beliefs are and what your religious beliefs are. Ask yourself if college is important to you and if you want to get married. Answer all of these questions and questions like them honestly and without thinking of what other people will think of you. This will help you determine what is important to you.
3. Let Go
Sometimes, to find yourself, you have to let go of your past to find your way. This is especially true if a trauma or major life event was the precipitating factor in your losing yourself. You need to let go of any anger, hurt, grief, or regret that you may be harboring about the past. Of course, this is much more difficult to do than it is to say. Often, letting go of the past comes in the form of forgiving yourself and others. In addition to forgiveness, it also helps to remind yourself to stay in the present and think about what is good in your life right now. These things will help you let go so you can reconnect with yourself.
Negative thought patterns can be very destructive, and they can prevent you from finding your way. If you find yourself thinking, “I can’t…,” you should replace that thought with, “I can…” If you are stuck in negative thought patterns this may be very difficult to do at first. When you first begin practicing positivity, it is ok to keep your positive statements simple. The most important thing is to keep practicing being positive. Over time, you will begin to feel better about yourself and more connected with yourself, which is the ultimate goal.
5. Set Goals
A big part of finding yourself again is working toward a goal that is important to you. This could be anything, but it is critical that your goal is important to you. Don’t try to lose weight because you think it will make someone else happy. Instead, pick a goal that means something to you. Whatever you choose, make sure you have a specific plan for how to meet your goal. For example, if you want to change careers, you should meet with a career counselor. Having a plan of action will help you be more successful in reaching your goal.
6. Try New Things
As part of finding yourself, you need to be open to having new experiences. When you try new things you give yourself an opportunity to find something you really like. You will also come across things that you do not like, which is perfectly fine. You can look at it as information for who you are and who you are not. Additionally, when you try something new you may find something that gives you direction and a sense of purpose. At the very least you will have many different experiences that make life much more interesting.
7. Find Your Passion
If you have lost touch with your passion or have yet to find something you are passionate about, finding something that excites you and that you connect with will help you find yourself. Trying new things could help you find something you are passionate about. You may even have to think about things you loved when you were little. When you do find your passion, embrace it. You do not have to make a career out of it unless you want to. Instead, your passion can be your hobby. Embracing your passion will allow you to be in touch with yourself.
Losing your way can be scary and disorienting. It can happen to anyone at any point in their life. Even though feeling disconnected with yourself is a horrible feeling, it is possible to get past it. You just need to take steps to reconnect with yourself. Have you ever lost your way?