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How to find yourself?

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  • #378862
    surfthesky
    Participant

    I feel very lost for a long time now. I finished school in 2019 and started studying biology. Even moved to a different city, a bigger city. Somehow I pretty quickly realised, biology wasn’t the right fit for me. Maybe it wasn’t even about my major per se, but the fact that I wasn’t ready for all of it. Now I am in my fourth semester, I am still not sure what I want to do instead. Psychology, linguistics, philosophy… I can’t seem to decide. And I think the problem lies within me. I keep serching for the “perfect thing”. Another thing is that I am always thinking about what other people would think about me. “What will I study that will make me super successful? Will they be jeaulous of me? Will they finally approve me?”. When imaganing this situations I often think about people from my Highschool and my past teachers. Why is the need to prove someone something so big?

    I feel so bad because in one month I will become 21 and I still haven’t figured out what it is that I want. Feel like I am far way behind everyone else. I had two years after highschool and instead of doing something, I really did nothing. I know that age is not all that matters and that while some find their peace of mind with 27 years, others search their whole lives for it.

    How do you know what is right for you? And how do you understand how to make even the seemingly wrong thing, feel right? I mean it isn’t really about the thing itself, it how you feel about it, isn’t it?

    I am thinking about maybe volunteering somewhere instead. Maybe it will be the one thing that will give me a purpose? But again, I feel so pressured and like I have no more time left… Like I don’t deserve it to go and do something else. I haven’t done anything useful with my time, you know? It’s the wanting so much and achieving nothing.

    How do you open your heart to listen to the universe and find your peace of mind, hence allow yourself to pursue something?

    #378864
    anita
    Participant

    Dear surfthesky:

    You shared that after graduating high school, you moved to a bigger city and started studying biology, but felt that it wasn’t the right fit for you, or maybe it was just that you weren’t “ready for all of it”. Now, at 21, you are on your fourth semester, and you don’t know what you want to study instead of biology, “can’t seem to decide”, keep “searching for the ‘perfect thing'”, the perfect thing that will make you “super successful”, approved of or envied by former high school peers and past teachers.

    You asked:  “Why is the need to prove someone something so big?”- I am guessing that as a child, the approval/ love that was expressed for you was not enough, so you developed a strong need for approval and love. You tried in small child-like ways to make the parent approve of you, and love you more, but your efforts failed, so you figured that you have to do something “so big” to gain the approval and  love that you needed so badly.

    You wrote: “It’s the wanting so much and achieving nothing”- we are born to want love, to want to be approved of and valued by the first, most important people in our lives: our parent or parents (whomever the adult or adults that take care of us most).

    When our need for love is “so  big”, and our want for love is “so much”, it is because the love we received as children was too little.

    I would like to try to answer your other questions, but will need to read your response to what I wrote so far.

    anita

     

    #378966
    surfthesky
    Participant

    Hi anita,

    thank you so much for taking the time to respond.

    Everything you wrote is true and I am amazed how accurate it is, even though you don’t know me. I think that all in all, I had a rather difficult upcoming and relationship with my parents. My mum was very young when she became pregnant with me, my dad left us shortly after my birth- never spoke to him since then. My step-dad came into my life when I was 4, so he was my father figure. I was mostly raised by my grandparents as my mum still had to study and go to uni. We moved a lot, I lived in 3 countries so far so that also shaped me. My relationship with my parents wasn’t totally bad, but they were very demanding, very strict with me. They never had much time for me and even when they did, they weren’t really interested in talking with me or just spending time with me and they criticised me a lot. But it is important to mention that I have two younger siblings that take up all their time and attention- my little brother has ADHD so he is very time-demanding. We were also fighting a lot in a very bad manner (but those kind of things are considered rather normal in our culture). The first time when I realised that familys can be different (beforehand I thought that every family is this way, that things are just this way for everyone) was when I moved in with my neighbours the last year of school (my parents had to move yet again, and I had to stay there to finish school, my neighbours were kind enough to ask me if I wanted to move in as they had an extra room and were financially stable) and saw how good their relationship with their children was.

    I haven’t spoken to my parents for a while now because I realised that at least for now, it is maybe better for me to have time to figure things out without their presence in my life. I do think that they weren’t the “best parents” because they transferred a lot of their own trauma and unhappiness on me. But still, I don’t want to sound like I complain- I know that I had it much better growing up than other people.

    But the need to satisfy them, to show them that I am time-worthy is definetly existing.

     

    #378973
    anita
    Participant

    Dear surfthesky:

    You are welcome. You shared that you were raised mostly by your  grandparents while your very young mother attended university. Your biological father left shortly after you were born, and your step father entered your life when you were 4. You moved a lot and lived in 3 countries. Your mother and step father “weren’t really interested in talking.. or just spending time” with you, they criticized you a lot and they were “very demanding, very strict”. There was fighting within the family, “fighting a lot in a very bad manner”. You have 2 younger siblings, one with ADHD,

    You (21 next month) are now living away from your parents and siblings, in a bigger city. You haven’t talked to your parents for a while, wanting “time to figure things out without their presence” in your life, “But the need to satisfy them, to show them that I am time-worthy is definitely existing”-

    – My thoughts today: when you were a child, your parents didn’t care to spend their time with you in positive, loving ways (putting the attention and effort required to get to know you and to show you empathy and affection). As a result, you felt hurt and figured that your parents thought that you were not good enough for their attention.  You tried in all the small, child-ways that were available to you, to become good enough for them, but they did not notice or appreciate your efforts. Instead, they criticized you and demanding more and more from you.

    Currently, as you consider what to study and do in life, you “keep searching for the ‘perfect thing’,  because each thing you tried so far in life to be good enough for your parents was imperfect/ failed. You want to be “super successful” because all your smaller successes so far in life failed to get your parents to value you as good enough.

    The topic of your thread is “How to find yourself?”- first thing to do is to grieve the fact that you did not receive your parents’ loving attention. Second, to understand that the reason for that has never been that you were not good enough/ worthy of their love. It will take time and work to fully and thoroughly understand it emotionally, beyond rationally, but when you do, your motivations in university and in life will change, and surfing the sky with a new motivation, you will no longer feel lost.

    anita

     

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