Can You Survive On Only Your Self?

Seeking Your Personal Purpose

Photo by Justin K Prim

Have you ever intentionally taken yourself out of your daily habits? Out of your rhythms? Have you ever abandoned your social support systems and moved to another part of the world, alone? Have you tried to restart things, even just a little bit, and discovered just how precious things like daily rhythms and support systems are.

In the last month I’ve been through all of the above and more. I’ve been riding the internal waves of emotion. Everything between fear and joyful bliss. I’ve been hiding things in the back of my mind because some obstacles just can’t presently be tackled.

I’ve felt this before because I’ve done this before. Maybe too many times. I feel that lost feeling creeping in. I’ve lost my rhythm. Even my sleep rhythm feels confused though moving to the other side of the world is a fine excuse for that problem. My daily rituals have been replaced because everything familiar has been replaced by everything foreign.

Despite being in Asia, English has been replaced with French. Daily bike rides have been replaced with near-daily swims. Work has been replaced by long days of trying to figure out what productive thing I should be doing with my time. Still avoiding that thing in the back of my mind that’s shaped like financial debt. I haven’t heard the voices of any family members in at least a month. Despite my best efforts to lay the foundations for a new life, that frightening wave of apathy keeps threatening to engulf me.

I’ve felt this before because I’ve done this before. I know it’s temporary. At this point, I have a good idea about how my internal systems work. But still.

I need Purpose.

I’ve been lucky. Maybe even blessed. Yes. I didn't jump into a black hole. I jumped into a new circle of new friends. Lucky. My old support system has been replaced by a new one. Lucky. My old apartment has been replaced by a better one. Lucky. My diet has improved, though one can never be sure how much an intentional avoidance of gummy bears, bread, and beer might be affecting your brain chemicals and in turn, emotions.

Have you ever fallen outside the realm of everything familiar and put yourself in a situation where there is no one that can tell you what to do? This is maybe the most important trial of adulthood, at least in my experience: When everything is stripped away and you are left with only your own self, your own dreams, and your own motivations, can you survive? Or will you just hide from the world and watch movies all day?

I haven’t watched a movie in over a month but the temptation is calling me constantly. Good Luck. Luckily, I know this attack on my internal sense of stability is temporary because I mailed myself a creative project from my past and I’m just waiting for it to arrive with my sense of passion and purpose. Maybe this afternoon? Good Luck.