“Listen to your inner self. It knows you best” – C. Elizabeth
Have you ever felt as though life was just zipping so fast, right in front of your eyes and you are not even a part of it? Sure you are alive and breathing but it just sort of seems you do not have a life? Like 24 hours is hardly enough time for you to even catch a breath?
I remember feeling this way when I worked in the bank. Life just seemed to go faster than I could comprehend. In fact, I didn’t seem to have a life even though I worked shifts and my off days seemed to roll by so fast that before I could take a breather and get my mind round all the things I needed to take care of, I was back at work again.
It was totally exasperating……and I think what made it worse was the fact that I wasn’t enjoying the job as such. It wasn’t really my forte. Life around me seemed to move pretty fast without me been a part of it.
I was lost even to myself and I didn’t find it funny at all. It seemed like the world around me was put on fast forward without the stop or pause button.
It wasn’t until I resigned from that job, that I felt like I could finally breathe and then the world was back to moving again at its normal pace. I could now settle down and do things I actually loved like writing and creative arts.
In fact, after leaving the bank, I wrote my first book, TOTUS TUUS (TOTALLY YOURS) which I published on WattPad (http://tinyurl.com/j2vfshr) and I also scored a few gigs as a Freelance Writer for a magazine.
Finally, I launched my blog. Now, that was just awesome for me because it seemed like that was what I was meant to do all along…….I said to myself, “This is more like it….doing what I loved and loving what I do”.
I connected so much with my inner self and didn’t again seem like an outsider to myself. I was able to breathe and appreciate life’s beauties more, especially those tiny awesome moments when I see a beautiful sunset, feel the breeze on my face, enjoy watching people go about their daily activities….I even love the weather on a rainy day.
I watched. I viewed. I observed…..and I got thinking……
These days, people are too busy to meet themselves anymore. We race through life so much so that we cannot even take out time to pause awhile, look within ourselves and get to meet us.
Sometimes, it’s actually nice and wonderful to look in the mirror and say “Hi” to yourself. Go on, try it. It’s nice. I’ll go first- “Hi Omon. My name is Omon too. I am your inner self. How are you?”
Connecting with your inner self helps you better understand who you are and what you stand for. You get to figure out your purpose, values, goals and even what motivates you. Knowing your inner self makes you self-aware and gives you more clarity into your true person.
Often times, we play different roles at different times…..You are an employee to your company, a daughter/son to your parents, a brother/sister to your siblings, a husband/wife to your spouse, a father/mother to your children….and the list goes on.
But before you are all of these, you are first of all, YOU and understanding the real you, makes you better able to fit into the roles life give you. These roles are simply identities that do not define who you are. Instead, you define them by being the actual YOU, made know by connecting with your inner self.
Do not build your life around these roles or identities so that when they are taken from you, you are unable to cope…you are lost and can’t be anything else. Often times, I have heard people say, “All I know is how to be a mother”; “All I know is how to be a husband/wife”.
You forget that before you were any of these identities, you were first and foremost, your own person. Do not be defined by these tags – Mother, Father, Daughter, Son, Employee, Boss etc. You are so much more. Find your dreams, purpose and goals and you will understand how much more you can be.
“You are one thing only. You are a Divine Being. An all-powerful Creator. You are a Deity in jeans and a t-shirt, and within you dwells the infinite wisdom of the ages and the sacred creative force of All that is, will be and ever was.” ― Anthon St. Maarten,
In some medieval movies, we often see where the Prince or Heir apparent to the throne of the kingdom refuses to be ruled by the traditions of the kingdom especially if they are barbaric traditions.
Sometimes when he is subjected to marry someone who he doesn’t love just to form alliance with another kingdom, you see the Prince fighting to stay true to his heart because he realizes that before he is a Prince, he is first a man who has his own dreams, goals and purpose. He understands that it is a duty to himself to be true to his heart for him to be genuinely happy.
A good movie series that I can site for an example is MERLIN.
So it is with everyone. We all have a duty to ourselves to be real, to be actually happy and to truly live and not just exist.
Some years ago when I still had the intention of becoming a nun, I used to take out time to withdraw from the world and retreat inside of me. I used to go to the monastery and convent. There I found peace and quiet and I was better able to communicate with God, hear myself think and even did a little self-discovery.
It did me a whole lot of good. Truth be told, I often wish I could still withdraw from the hustles of the world and have an alone time in a beautiful scenery….a walk in a park filled with lovely and sweet-smelling flowers, a beach, an open field etc.
I guess that is one of the many reasons why I love nature so much. In her, I can find myself in the silence. However, for now, I make do with the beautiful silence in my home when everyone has gone about their daily activities.
Often times, we are saddled with so many tasks to accomplish that we hardly have time for ourselves let alone think clearly. The day flies by and suddenly 24 hours don’t seem to be enough anymore.
There are even times we may not be physically active but mentally, we are so very busy that we don’t seem to notice how great and beautiful life actually is. I was missing out on this and I had to check myself. “This has got to stop” I told myself one fine day.
Then I looked in the mirror and said “hi” to myself. Ever since, I have been in touch with my inner self and I am aware of my every feeling. I joke, laugh, gist and even chide myself when I am going off course. I can confidently say I am a better person because of this.
I no longer wear a mask of feigned happiness to the world. No! Now, I am truly happy. I do what I love, honing my skills and talents…… In fact I live an amazing life now. I am so aware of my feelings that when anything seems to threaten my happiness, I deal with it right away. No more holding off until later.
We are all too busy and occupied with advanced technology – browsing, texting, online stuffs, social networking etc. so much so that we do not even see the need for a face-to-face interaction anymore even though we can help it.
We do not see the need to take a break in our journey through life and even see the direction we are headed.
We wake up in the morning, rush right into the day; sometimes we even forget to give thanks to God for the gift of the day and commit the day to Him. We don’t actually pray. We are too busy to pray, too busy to communicate with God the giver of life forgetting that the very life we are striving so hard to enjoy is in the hands of the Creator.
We just utter some words of prayer without our hearts actually in it; we can’t even hear ourselves pray because we are too busy rushing to get started with the day. We are in a bit of a hurry to get our lives on the move that taking out time to actually spend with God is a bit too much to ask. We forget to take care of our souls which is actually “the life” in us.
Craig Groeschel did say, “If the devil can’t make us really bad, then he will try to make us really busy”.
Every now and then, we feel so estranged from our inner selves that we may not even feel the void or the lack of connection with the very substance of our existence – our souls. We are alienated from the best part of ourselves, the part that makes us who we are.
The reason is because often times, we just exist and not live. We go through the day like going through the motions and before we know it, the day is gone and another day is here.
The funny thing is sometimes, we may not even see what was accomplished within those 24 hours of the day we rushed into in the first place.
“Life is but a quick succession of busy nothings” Jane Austen said.
We are often in a hurry. We feel as though there is no time but the truth is there is nothing but time. The question is how do we use it? 24 hours is quite big, you know. Hold your horses a bit and you will see. We are so busy running around becoming slaves to time and prisoners of our jobs that suddenly 24 hours isn’t enough anymore to achieve anything.
We do not see the need to take time and even appreciate the world around us; the beautiful creation of God displayed before us in nature. We do not see the need to breathe in the fresh air from the ocean and appreciate even the trees. We do not see the need to spend time with our families and loved ones all because we are too busy.
We struggle through life wanting to achieve so much that we fail to find out our actual purpose. It would really be unfair to go through life in such a rush and not realize our individual best.
Let me share a story with you I also read on http://storyoffaith.blogspot.com.ng/
May I Please Borrow $25?
A man came home from work late, tired and irritated, to find his 5-year old son waiting for him at the door.
SON: ‘Daddy, may I ask you a question?’
DAD: ‘Yeah sure, what it is?’ replied the man.
SON: ‘Daddy, how much do you make an hour?’
DAD: ‘That’s none of your business. Why do you ask such a thing?’ the man said angrily.
SON: ‘I just want to know. Please tell me, how much do you make an hour?’
DAD: ‘If you must know, I make $50 an hour.’
SON: ‘Oh,’ the little boy replied, with his head down.
SON: ‘May I please borrow $25?’
The father was furious, ‘If the only reason you asked that is so you can borrow some money to buy a silly toy or some other nonsense, then you march yourself straight to your room and go to bed. Think about why you are being so selfish. I don’t work hard every day for such childish frivolities.’
The little boy quietly went to his room and shut the door. The man sat down and started to get even angrier about the little boy’s questions. How dare he ask such questions only to get some money? After about an hour or so, the man had calmed down and started to think: Maybe there was something he really needed to buy with that $25.00 and he really didn’t ask for money very often.
The man went to the door of the little boy’s room and opened the door. ‘Are you asleep, son?’ He asked. ‘No daddy, I’m awake,’ replied the boy. ‘I’ve been thinking, maybe I was too hard on you earlier’ said the man. ‘It’s been a long day and I took out my aggravation on you. Here’s the $25 you asked for.’
The little boy sat straight up, smiling. ‘Oh, thank you daddy!’ he yelled. Then, reaching under his pillow he pulled out some crumpled up bills. The man saw that the boy already had money and started to get angry again. The little boy slowly counted out his money, and then looked up at his father. ‘Why do you want more money if you already have some?’ the father grumbled.
‘Because I didn’t have enough, but now I do,’ the little boy replied. ‘Daddy, I have $50 now. Can I buy an hour of your time? Please come home early tomorrow. I would like to have dinner with you.’ The father was crushed. He put his arms around his little son, and he begged for his forgiveness.
Moral of the story: It’s just a short reminder to all of you working so hard in life. We should not let time slip through our fingers without having spent some time with those who really matter to us, those close to our hearts.
Do remember to share that $50 worth of your time with someone you love. If we die tomorrow, the company that we are working for could easily replace us in a matter of hours… But the family & friends we leave behind will feel the loss for the rest of their lives.
Time spent with family, friends, loved ones is never and will never be a waste. Don’t be so enslaved in your job that you couldn’t even take time to notice the new hairdo your wife has on or that your child has just lost a tooth or that your anniversary is some days away or that your husband just shaved his overgrown beard.
After making all these money from the so-called job, who would you have to share it with? Life is never fun when you are all alone. It is meant to be lived and shared with others.
Check out this other story from the same site:
Once upon a time, a very strong woodcutter asked for a job in a timber merchant and he got it. The pay was really good and so was the work condition. For those reasons, the woodcutter was determined to do his best. His boss gave him an axe and showed him the area where he was supposed to work.
The first day, the woodcutter brought down 18 trees. “Congratulations”, said his boss, very pleased with him. “Go on like this and you will be the star performer for this month”. Feeling very motivated by the words of endearment from his boss, the woodcutter tried harder the next day, but he could only bring down 15 trees and on the day after that, he could only bring 10 trees.
Day after day, the number of trees he brought down were reduced. “I must be losing my strength”, the woodcutter thought. He went to his boss and apologized, saying he couldn’t understand what was going on.
“When was the last time you sharpened your axe?” his boss asked him. “Sharpen? I had no time to sharpen my axe. I have been very busy trying to cut trees…..”
Our lives are like that. We sometimes get so busy that we don’t take time to sharpen the “axe”. In today’s world, it seems that everyone is busier than ever, but less happy than ever. Why is that? Could it be that we have forgotten how to stay “sharp”? There is nothing wrong with activity and hard work.
But we should not get so busy that we neglect the truly important things in life, like our personal life, taking time to get close to our Creator, giving more time for our family, taking time to read etc. We all need time to relax, to think and meditate, to learn and grow. If we don’t take the time to sharpen the “axe”, we will become dull and lose our effectiveness.
Another interesting story, wouldn’t you say?
We go back and forth on the road of life and often times, going nowhere. At the end of the day, we look back with regret at the years gone by and we see that nothing of value was ever done. We still have so much to accomplish but now it’s too late to cry over spilt milk.
Rob Bell said, “Busy is a drug that a lot of people are addicted to”. Sometimes, we are not even happy but we are just too busy to notice. Now, that is just the saddest thing, don’t you think?
It’s time to change all that….
Amy Larson said, “Inner self-reliance means you have a strong sense of who you are without titles without achievements, without family or social groups or religion. Inner self-reliance is who you are without all of these things which is (ironically) what you are meant to be with them”.
So, take out time to discern who you truly are. Go to a park or beach or even Church….anywhere you can get quiet and just go deep into yourself. Are there any grey areas you have left unattended? Are you happy? Do you find joy in life? Are you doing all you can to live the life you want? Are you satisfied with your marriage and job?
Ask yourself these questions and more and be truly honest with yourself. If there are areas where you need help, don’t be shy to seek it. We are all in need of help one way or the other.
Someone wisely said, “If you can’t get enough quiet to hear yourself, your life is too loud”. It is imperative you stay in touch with your inner self so you don’t lose the essence of who you truly are.
Discovering who you really are gives you the courage to take out time and involve yourself in the lives of others in a positive way. It helps you to share or partake more in the world.
Woodrow Wilson said, “You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world and you impoverish yourself if you forget the errand”.
Understanding your purpose in life makes you more connected to others. You no longer avoid responsibilities by taking the easy way out – trying not to get involved. You realize that there is a miracle; a certain kind of joy and fulfillment when we live our lives for others in the right way.
It takes such simple and ordinary acts – caring for others, smiling at others, offering a kind word, giving a hug for us…… to indeed remember or better still know more about who we are.
Live free. Be happy. Be self-aware. Know who you are, what you want out of life and go for it. You are your truest friend. Stop avoiding you and be more in touch with who you really are.
Bryant Mcgill said, “Once you connect with your inner self, it is impossible to be lonely or desperate” and this is absolutely true.
So dearest friend, seek your inner self today and establish contact. Check on yourself often to know how you are doing. I promise you, it would make you a better you. You want to know why? Because as Nisargadatta said, “The innermost light shining peacefully and timelessly in the heart, is the real Guru. All others merely show the way”.
You would be less stressed, more organized, happier, more at peace and you would be able to take life one day at a time going at a steady pace.
Now you know……
Thank you so much for reading this interesting piece. I hope you found it really inspiring as was the intent behind it.
Have you ever been in touch with your inner you? What was your experience like? I would love to read your comments below.