I remember the time I recognized that I was drifting through life.
“What happens next?”
“I hope something good will happen to me.”
“That’s just the way it is. I can’t do anything about it.”
I used to say these statements over and over, and I caught myself.
I caught myself saying these statements as if they were gospel truth. Reflections of my aimlessness and lack of personal power.
What did that tell me?
That I was drifting through life.
I realized that those statements told nothing about what I wanted to do, what I planned to do, and whether I had any plan at all. Those statements were just waiting, for whatever comes.
I realized that I didn’t really have a plan. That I was just waiting for whatever opportunity comes my way, and hoping that I like what will come.
Or that I just eventually like whatever it is that I got handed.
What else told me, and can tell you, that you’re just drifting through life?
You don’t know what you want.
And if you don’t know what you want, then it doesn’t really matter where you go, or what you do.
You’ll be pulled in many different directions by other people who have dreams, goals, and the plans and actions to pursue them.
If you don’t know what you want, then it’s easy to just say yes to whatever comes your way. Or it’s just as easy to say no to whatever comes your way.
Now, not knowing what you want can be helped by exploring, trying out new things, and discovering what you want. Even that act of exploration and discovery has purpose and focus.
That which is most important to you.
You don’t have a plan.
Because you may know where you want to go, but if you don’t have a plan to get there, then you might never will.
As the old adage goes: “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”
You just wait for what comes next.
Or you just wait for and take whatever comes to you.
Which can be a blessing sometimes, but most of the time, it’s something different and can lead you away from where you want to end up in the first place.
In my case, it was that nothing was coming next. I got, and felt, stuck in the situations which I drifted myself into. And when that happens, you can have difficulty drifting yourself out of those situations.
You’ve got to take control, and get yourself moving, and getting, the things that you want.
You’re bored and unmotivated.
And not simply just because of the grind or the repetition. You’re bored and unmotivated because you question why you’re there in the first place.
Or where you’ll end up if you stay where you are.
Or that what you’re doing has no importance to you, has no meaning for you.
Look for what’s meaningful for you, and what inspires you. Look for what you’re good at, what you enjoy doing.
We all will encounter times when we’re bored and unmotivated. The question is whether we see what we’re doing getting us to where we want to go.
You’ve lost touch with yourself.
You might come to a point where you’re unsure, or you don’t recognize who the person you’re staring at the mirror is. A moment where you sort of don’t know who you are anymore.
And it’s not just a simple case of drama or “soul-searching”, as the call it. It can be coming from a real experience of doing things that are not really that important and meaningful for you, and at the same time, telling yourself that they are.
This happens when there’s a disconnect with our dreams, what we want to be, where we end up, with what we’re doing, and with how we see ourselves, and what we believe about ourselves. What we stand for, what we want, what we are capable of doing, and not doing.
When you’re not anchored, grounded, with a direction and purpose, it can be so easy to be swept by the currents of life, and the demands of others, whilst not pushing for what’s important and meaningful for you.
You rely too much on other people.
Now, no man is an island. But that doesn’t mean you have to base your decisions on other people, all the time.
That what you decide to do, and even think and believe, is based on the beliefs, opinions, and approval of other people.
Or that you make other people decide for you.
For quite some time, this happened to me as well. Whenever I would make decisions, I would always ask other people for their opinions and views.
I was looking for permission.
You don’t need other people to do that. You have the power. You can give yourself your own permission.
You’re not taking enough meaningful action, and spending enough purposeful time.
What if you already have a plan, and are taking steps to do the plan, and to achieve your goals?
You can still be drifting in that state, when you aren’t challenging yourself enough. When you’re not doing enough action, when you’re not pouring time, effort, energy, and investing in what will get you to where you want to go.
Make time for yourself, and to do what is most important and meaningful to you.
Say no to what’s not important.
Say yes to what is.
Say yes to yourself.
How did you catch yourself drifting along in your life? Please share in the comments below!