About a year ago on my 40th birthday, I made a promise to myself to dedicate the next year to trusting myself and acting on how I felt in my heart, regardless of what I thought anyone would think about it. I figured that 40 is about half way through this life and it’s kind of now or never.
I realized that the first half of my life had been centered on the accumulation of enough conscious experiences of success and failure that I could have faith in and trust myself. I asked myself, have I truly lived enough to have a sense of myself by now, or have I failed to test life and succumbed to my fears about the world, never really learning to measure myself and learn my gifts? My life more closely resembled the former, so I said fuck it! I’m gonna trust me.
Trusting me, however, hasn’t manifested as huge changes in my life. They have developed more subtly as I started being myself more, asking for what I wanted, doing what I enjoyed, and not listening as much to the voices in my head trying to convince me that something bad would happen if I trusted myself.
Ten months later and still no huge changes. While there has been an increase in arguments and tense conversations with my sweetheart during this time, I’ve also observed that they have been accompanied by tremendous growth and personal success for both of us.
Most importantly for me, I am happy. And my happiness is not rooted in who understands me or who likes me, or how many likes my insightful tweets get, but the feeling that all of the choices I make are an active contribution of something unique and original to the world.
When I feel stuck, I reach out of inspiration. This weekend I came across Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essay Self-Reliance. Within 5 minutes of beginning to reading it, I noticed a few tears welling up. His words were reminiscent of words I spoke just last week during my first Astro-Logic talk in Venice. We are living in times where we need new myths, new institutions and new ways of being. They need to come from inside of each of us as we wrestle with life and glean hard won wisdom as we evolve as individuals and as a society.
It’s a good time on the planet for us to be re-introduced to RWE’s words. Read Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Self-Reliance