I used to think I knew what I was doing when it came to life. I had everything figured out. The house, the family, and the stable job. For a while, life was really good. Or so I pretended.
My life is unrecognizable compared to one year ago. It’s completely changed.
That is life. Your life can turn a complete 180° sometimes. It can change in an instant. And when someone says that phrase, many of us believe that change is bad.
But instant change can also be good.
If I look back now, I’ve never had life figured out. I followed what was expected and what everyone else was doing. I was faking it.
And it made me believe I was in control.
But the truth is, I’ve never been in control. Until now.
“There are only a few who control themselves and their affairs by a guiding purpose; the rest do not proceed; they are merely swept along, like objects afloat in a river. And of these objects, some are held back by sluggish waters and are transported gently; others are torn along by a more violent current; some, which are nearest the bank, are left there as the current slackens; and others are carried out to sea by the onrush of the stream. Therefore, we should decide what we wish, and abide by the decision.”
-Seneca from Moral Letters To Lucilius, Letter 23
Like the quote above from Seneca, I’ve spent most of my life being swept along by the current in the river of life. I’ve been content to allow others to guide where I’m heading.
I will not be torn by the violent current. I will not be left at the bank.
I’m in control now. I’m in charge. Others do not have control over where I’m going and where I will end up. It is up to me.
Where that place is, I don’t know. I have no clue where I’m headed as far as life is concerned.
I have things I want to accomplish, but I don’t know if I will. I don’t know if what I picture in the future is going to happen.
I’d like my life to go a certain way, and I’m doing what I need to get there. But nothing in life is guaranteed.
And all the above is okay.
We don’t need to have everything figured out. Nothing says you must know what you are doing in life by the time you reach a certain age.
Nothing anyone tells you will put you on the exact path for an incredible life.
And those people who tell you they have life figured out are full of it. They may think they do, but it’s not the truth. Not one person in the history of the world has figured out this thing we call life.
It’s ever-changing and unique to each person. It’s tough and easy all at the same time. It’s a mystery unsolved.
And it can be wonderful if you let it.
So if you have no clue where your life is headed, you are not alone. There is nothing wrong with not knowing how your life will end up or where you are headed at this moment.
But as long as you have control over it, your life may end up where you want it to be.
I may lose control of where I’m headed. I may have to jump back in the river.
Yet, whatever happens, I will lead with love and kindness. I will make the most of the time I have left because I’ve wasted enough of it already. @jefftherunner1 (Click to Tweet!)
And I will enjoy my clueless journey the whole way. So should you.
Jeff Barton is a writer, ultra-runner, lover of books and zombies, a practitioner of positive thinking, and most importantly, a dad. Living and loving life one day at a time. You can find him at jeffthewriter.com and jefftherunner.com.
Image courtesy of Aziz Acharki.