As my final year of conventional schooling, my senior year, approaches in a few weeks I am really thinking more and more about life, commitments, and finding ourselves. It may seem stereotypical to be thinking about finding yourself, but I am more thinking about others finding themselves. I have truly redefined myself in the past 2 years, through running, a better recommitment to health, the discovery of meditation, the mindfulness exercise of yoga, and so much more. I believe I have worked much more towards striving for my better, for the life that I truly love and not to be pretentious but I believe that my friends and acquaintances are still struggling on that front.
And it is typical to do the stereotypical young adult "finding yourself" journey, but I believe the "finding" we are taught to do doesn't lead to a honest and true life. Instead it usually leads to a constrictive office job, overweight issues and sickness, depression, ego, vanity, and regret. We "find ourselves" within the paradigms of society. Instead of truly finding ourselves. But, even though the phrase finding yourself seems final, it shouldn't be. To find yourself isn't a singular goal or point you reach, instead it is a constant journey that we are perpetually embarked upon.
Life teaches and destroys and in high school it seems very apparent. You're growing from the preconceived "child" into an "adult." Who, because they turn an age, that magical number of 18, is supposed to be an "adult." But the stigmas we hold with the word "adult" are wrong. In fact, in my opinion, the separation of adult and child and teen and whatever else is stupid. It is a waste of expression and thought that only puts us into a place where we believe that if we are old enough and "successful" enough then we have "made" it.
But like I said you can never, ever "make" it. The trail is never done. It is a journey that we take to lead us to the nigh unreachable goal of enlightenment. And that is exactly the mindset that I try to implement in school.
The mindset that, as I get ready for school, will constantly remind me that what I am learning and doing is all part of the journey. So even if I'm annoyed, mad, or bored it will all be for the better in the long run. And I think that is really important, especially to get through tests, classes, and situations that you dislike or even down right hate.
Another mindset people tend to take when going back to school is that they dread it. They love summer and so therefore hate going back to school. But quite honestly I'm excited. Excited to get back into a routine where I can execute what I wish in a timeframe that has a clear cut schedule. Now I know everyone says I have "to focus on school," but I think with the great grades I've gotten and great SAT and ACT scores I have proven that you can say you're "busy," but you're really not. If school is the only thing that is making you "busy" well you're not really. I have and will continue to put out all the content I put out to inspire, motivate, and change people's lives. I am committed to what I love and I hope to show that to my classmates. Because we all need that love. We all desire, even if we hide it away, we all desire a life where we truly love what we do and are inspired to do it everyday. Make your own life, do not rely on the paradigms that our society instills within us.
Life is about learning, right? Which is why I embrace the fact I get to learn at school, we all need to embrace situations we may dislike. Now I'm not saying school is something I dislike, but there are classes, lessons, and situations that are extremely boring and demotivating. But all we can do in uncomfortable situations is embrace what we dislike and run with it. Run down that trail of life and deal with the annoyances as best you can. But what is your best? What can you do to deal with it? Well the only thing you can, stay present. Be fully immersed in the moment and become aware of what is uncomfortable, annoying, or pissing you off. But, only use awareness as a tool, not as a weapon. Do not become aware of the annoying lesson the teacher is giving and lash out. Do not become uncooperative, mean, or disrespectful to the teacher, because rudeness is no way to deal with that situation no matter how much you may want to seem "cool" or "fit in." And this doesn't just apply to school. No. It applies to all aspects of life, to all ages. Situations that you dislike are not meant to be dealt with arrogance or disrespect or anger. Instead they are to be met with open arms and loving kindness that will allow you to become aware of them and let the transgression wash over you like water. As water flows down rivers and pummels rocks into beautiful, yet mystifying shapes, you to must be like the rocks. Silent and still amongst the pummel of transgressions, because you too will only be transformed into a more beautiful, a more mystifying, a more enlightened person.
Schooling isn't just about discomfort, it's about joy to. Which is why, knowing this is my last year of schooling in my hometown, I am mentally preparing to really try to enjoy this year as much as I can. To savor every moment with my friends and soak up the ideals, scenes, and many layers of my town, so I can take a contented and prepared heart to college, ready for the challenges and joys to come. While I look forward very much to college, I am also saddened a little by the prospect of leaving my family with whom I do so much with. The vacations, running with my dad, cooking, and day to day activities that occur will surely not cease to exist, I will come and visit, my hopeful college is not that far away, but it will not be the same. Because, while many kids see college as an escape, as freedom, I see it as a sad time to leave my family, I am very close with them obviously. However, I know that it will be amazing and I am ready for all it will bring. But, I think right now I simply need to focus on senior year, on doing my best, on staying present, on running hard, and eating well. A few key principles that I think will really take me far this coming year and I hope you will join me in my journey through this transformative time, as you already have thus far.
One thing I am especially excited for is more and more podcasts. Of all the things I've done in terms of the website and such, I think the podcast is one of the absolute coolest. It has not only brought me simply in contact with so many amazing people, but has allowed me to form strong friendships with role models and inspirational people that I never thought I would meet, let alone call a friend. It really is an amazing source for growth, both personal and within the community, as I spread my message, and it has taught me so much. I am talking about it as an entity apart from me, as an "it," because it really has turned into that. It has turned into something beyond just me, with the amazing feedback, guests, and information I've learned from it, it has aided me just as much, maybe more, as the listeners. And so has this blog, the longest running of all my endeavors, it has transformed me to. Just on a more personal level, without the connection with guests, because it really is a personal blog.
But, it's not just mental preparations I am employing for the coming school year. I am also embarking upon physical preparations. Getting my supplies ready, my room ready for a reimmersion into school, planning out what I will probably eat during the school day, and much more. Because, as I talk about pretty frequently, preparation is key. It's key in everything. In what we eat, how we train, our work, our schooling, our family, our relationships, and so much more. If you learn to effectively prepare and plan you will enter situations with a peace of mind. It is essential to practice preparation, to get ready the day before, so that when you wake up in the morning your clothes, gear, and food is ready to go so that you can attack the day. Preparation is something we all need to implement into our lives, on all levels. If you are busy, preparation is even more key. Because busyness can either bring one of two things. It can either bring excuses or regimentation. Meaning if you are busy you either make excuses for things that you need to do outside of your busyness or are regimented and get everything done. And the role model of the regimented person is the ideal we must capture. Think of the person in your life who seems to always have everything under control and try to emulate that. Pull from those inspirations of people who are regimented and dedicated and implement that into your life. Plan ahead!
And so in conclusion I guess I am simply excited for the new school year. Ready to execute what I truly wish to do, to commit to doing my best, and to constantly strive for my better in a present peace of mind while letting transgressions wash over me like the water over stone, because I know that the fire reshapes the metal.
Thank you as always and I hope your are enjoying the blog, I hope you can follow along this coming year as I share my experiences, thoughts, musings, and opinions to inspire you to strive for YOUR better and create the life you truly want.