For the past few years I’ve been focused on figuring out my life. I’ve been spending a lot of time slowing down and thinking about what really matters to me. What makes my life feel full and satisfying? What kind of things to I want to do with my life? What’s my life’s purpose? How do I figure all of this out and make my life one that will leave me feeling full and content? All these questions are common. Especially to young people, but honestly, to every human being ever.
I’ve also been reading a lot of blogs, books, attending classes, and watching YouTube videos. They’ve taught me a lot. But I’ve noticed a massively popular trend on the rise. And it disturbs me.
The idea that everyone should drop everything and live in a van. Drop everything and travel with no home. Cut all your ties with a settled down life. This is the key to happiness.
Before I get into this, I want to say something important. I do not think these things are bad. I do not think living life in any of these ways would be bad for every person. In fact I think these ways of living are beautiful and inspiring. But I DO NOT think they’re the answer to all of your problems and questions, and more importantly, I DO NOT think they are a life for everyone.
I believe from the bottom of my heart that you can be happy and live a full, passionate life no matter where you live or what you’re surrounded by. Even if you have a house in the city in North America. I believe that you don’t have to give up commitments and family life and bills to live a happy life. I don’t believe that you need to remove yourself from civilization to live a happy life. I’m sorry. I just don’t think that’s the answer for everyone. Maybe it’s the answer for you, and it’s the life you dream of. Then honestly I admire you and please go chase your dreams, don’t let anything stop you.
But more often what I’ve seen is this.
People feel empty. People feel stuck in their 9-5 office jobs in the city who hate their lives and want more. They watch YouTubers & see Instagrammers who tell them that if they want to be happy they should quit their jobs and travel, or move to a remote area. Again, maybe this works for some people, or maybe it’s good for everyone temporarily. But I think there are so many other options and so many other things you should try. There is not one simple answer for every human.
This is my advice to you.
If you feel stuck in a life you hate. Stop & change it right now. Think about what kind of life you really want. Then sacrifice whatever you need to to make it happen. If you have dreams to be an author, to run a business, to be a blogger, to do anything at all. If you’re not chasing those dreams you’re going to have emptiness somewhere deep in your heart. So, if you’re not working towards a life you want to be living, please, please, start. I’ve said this before. Don’t expect that right now you’ll make money in a sucky job and be unhappy, and in 50 years you’ll retire and be happy. That is not a life worth living.
But you don’t have to give up everything to be happy.
Instead stop yourself. Think about what YOU really want.
Think about what you need to make your dreams happen. What kind of sacrifices do you need to make? How hard are you going to have to work? Then stop making excuses and waiting for the right time, because if you do that, your life will pass you by and it won’t be a life you’re happy with. Once you’ve done this. Take action and don’t stop until you’ve made your life a life you want to live.
But I’m telling you right now. Just because your life does not satisfy you, does not mean the only option is dropping everything.
I think the reason that living off the grid is so inspiring to so many is because it reminds them that they don’t have to living boring simple lives. But I get afraid when I see these messages. Because while they promote a very good message – don’t settle for a life you don’t want – I think a lot of people take it the wrong way. People make it seem as though if you’re unsatisfied with your life, then living a unique off the grid life (or any of these things I keep mentioning) is the only way to living a better life. And that’s absolutely not the truth for everyone.
This is true for everyone.
If you work hard and work towards your dreams, and you make your life a life that you actually want, not a life you’re simply settling for, you can be immensely happy. Even if you’re living in a normal house in a busy city, paying bills and growing a family – for example. You don’t have to sacrifice a stable home, family, friends, belongings, all to be happy, unless that’s what you really want. It makes my heart sad how often people make it seem like living a typical life where you work a 9-5 in the city and have a home and a family is corrupt. I know so many people who have lived full lives this way and have inspired my heart. If this is what sounds good to you, if this, for whatever reason you have, allows you to fulfill your life’s purpose, then please live your life this way. But no matter what kind of life you want to live, please never lose sight of your purpose.
Don’t settle for a life you don’t want. Don’t give up your passion and dreams for an easy simple life or because you think you won’t succeed. Let me toss in a sports quote that is so accurate in life: “you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” It’s simply true. And you won’t know that something won’t work until you try.
Don’t stop seeking what brings life to your soul or else you’ll be an empty husk floating around. No matter where you live or what you do, make sure you’re living a full life with a purpose.
Whatever you believe your purpose in life is, whatever you dream of doing, live in line with these things and you will live a full, passionate, and content life.
Never lose sight of this:
As long as you aren’t putting your goals and dreams aside, it doesn’t matter where you live or what you’re surrounded by, you can absolutely be happy and content.
I’ve shared a lot of thoughts in this post. And I’ll probably babble on for 5 more posts about this topic because I care so much about it. So if you have any thoughts, I would love to chat with you about these things.