It’s as if our every move is being studied and monitored. With the eyes of parents, friends, family members and even strangers we meet wondering what we’re doing with our life. Is it so bad that many of us don’t know where life is taking us or have a master plan as to how we’re going to be the boss of our own life. Most of us have some type of an idea but sometimes it doesn’t feel like enough to feed the pressures of those who want to see us succeed. This is a guide as to how we can calmly, respectfully and wisely approach the interrogation about what we're doing with our life without feeling the guilt of pointing fingers.
The first thing we need to realize is that we’ve done nothing wrong. We’re not criminals of our own life just because we’re unsure of where we may be headed next. When people give us a good talking to about what we should, could or need to be doing with our life there’s no need to get overwhelmed. This is our life to live not anyone else’s. It’s okay to take kind suggestions, gestures towards opportunities and advice - but we have nothing to panic over. Making decisions about what what direction we’re headed in isn’t always as simple as picking an ice cream flavor. What doesn’t help is when others are telling us rather than discussing with us what could possibly be next for us in life.
When I realized that I would only have one more year of school left before graduating college I noticed that more people asked about my future plans. For most I had a well thought out answer in response but when it came to my family and best friends I seemed to stumble on the thought. I became less confident about my expectations and felt as if they were paying close attention to the details of my plans. Some offering advice and others poking holes in my future plans with questions of uncertainty. I’m always open to listening to advice and even ask myself those same doubtful questions. I don’t always have an answer but that only helped put a boost in my confidence because I don’t always have to have a perfect answer. Sometimes others want to know my plans before I’ve figured them out myself. I don’t let this discourage or upset me, I realized that it’s okay to be unsure.
This is said with the intention of comfort not discouragement. In more than enough cases, even the most carefully well thought out plans have the potential to fall through. It’s how life works, with that being said when people study the blueprints of our lives or begin drawing them for us, keep in mind that this doesn’t define the future. This drawn out plan isn’t our life in permanent ink. Life is full of crazy, twist and turns. Expect the unexpected.
During moments when discussing future plans to those who disagree or have different expectations it's important to stay calm. A discussion as important as it may be does not call for any arguments, anger or saying anything that may later be regretted out of frustration. Disagreements are going to happen but remember that not everyone sees the same future for us as we do ourselves. No one can read our minds, feel how deep our passions are or know what we feel called to in our hearts. It’s not always easy to explain to those who don’t understand. Sometimes it’s the people closest to us where disagreements occur because they love us most and only want the best for us.
One way to handle this situation with a family member or close friend who isn’t on the same page with we have planned for ourselves is to have an open mind, listen and leave everything in the moment. Once the discussion is over try not to hold a grudge or carry the possible frustration like a heavyweight over the persons head. Another way is to realize that no matter how much convincing we do on our part there may not be anything we can say to get them to see eye to eye. Rather than continue to bring it up with a debate speech in mind, opening a door for an argument or those same frustrating feelings, give the person time to think things over. Allow them the chance to re approach when their ready to further discuss it without letting it consume every conversation.
Recognize that the feelings and emotions that run high during a discussion like this runs on a two way street. Because those closest to us want the best for us it can feel just as frustrated to understand us. It may take time for them to see our plans the way we do, understand what our true passions are or see glimpses of the same visions that we do for ourselves. If we are aware of this it can better help the discussions we have with others. It can help guide us to when enough has been said or even read the others excitement to further go into detail of the type of future we see for ourselves.