I feel lost without my self-definition of what I did for a living. My feelings of accomplishment, my effective interaction with others, my sense of purpose, were all tied up in my profession.
And then I retired.
It’s who you are, not what you did
What I accomplished in the past is that that – the past. What am I going to do, how am I going to define myself now? When I look at who I am, not what I did, I recognize my contribution to myself, to others, to my world. I am curious, enthusiastic, introspective, thoughtful and philosophical. That surely counts for something. I am interested in learning new things and that makes me an interesting source for others. Because of my particular journey, I often have insights to offer that make a difference in the lives of others. Wow! That’s so much better than the confining definition of my profession.
Self worth comes from within
Others are simply a reflection of you. That’s helpful when the feedback you are getting is a bit negative and you have a desire to change. However, the key to elf-worth is your desire to express yourself to the best of your ability, to move through your world with mindfulness and compassion. It’s not about what you produce; it’s about the qualities that guide all your choices and interactions. Have you defined them yet? Kindness, creativity, service, exploration, honoring your body, allowing, mindfulness, serenity, simplicity, compassion, presence…what qualities are important to you and how do you express them in your life?
Hang out with the positive reflectors
Rejoice in your individuality. Do not be a crowd pleaser. Stay strong in your own convictions. You are not meant to please anyone. You need only be true to yourself. Show up to the best of your ability, with well-conceived qualities and guidelines that support you in adding your special light to the world. I’m drawn to the go-getters, the philosophers, the creatives – people who share my interests. We nurture when we interact. We inspire each other through our personal enthusiasm for our journey. Those are the people I want in my life. Those are the ones I want to support and learn from. Surround yourself with the people that reflect back to you the qualities you choose to express in your life. Release the nay-sayers. Keep your space clear for what you want to invite in.
Embrace your uniqueness
Every living being is valuable. No matter how they show up or what they do. Everyone and everything is made up of the same universal energy. We simple express ourselves differently. Do not compare yourself to anyone else. You are uniquely you. You have your own special purpose. You are a vital and integral strand in the web of life. No one can take your place. You must do your life the way you need to do it. Learn your lessons. Embrace your experiences. Acknowledge your contributions. There is no one to compare with you. There is no one like you. Value yourself for the unique expression of life that you are.