Making Bucket Lists – How to Find Direction In Life

There have been a lot of times in my life, where I would wake up in the middle of the night, trying to figure out how to find direction in life and what my next steps should be. Should I learn something new? Should I search for a different job? What kind of job would suit me best? What if it will not be suitable for me at all?

It’s hard to calm your mind and think clearly, while all these thoughts are circling around. 

‘That’s the real beauty of life—knowing that you have absolute control over each of your thoughts, words, and actions.’(1)

One of the scary, and at the same time great, things is that we are all way more in control of our life than we think we are. We can set goals, and by thinking and working towards them, we can slowly move towards reaching them. 

city - find direction in life
Photo by Quintin Gellar on Pexels.com

Because ‘no goal, means no starting point’ (2), and no starting point means a lot of hours spent worrying about the future and procrastinating. 

Trying New Things

One of my best advice for anyone, who is trying to figure out what their purpose in life is – just try. 

I believe that we can speculate what is best for us, trying to do research and looking into other people’s opinions on the subject, but until we try something, we can never truly know. 

Some people are just lucky to discover their interests, that drive them forward, early on. Others jump from subject to subject, not being able to stick to one thing and feeling like they are failing. If you belong to the later category, don’t consider yourself a failure. Keep experimenting and trying new things, because that is the best way to find direction in life. 

Don’t Cling On The Idea Of How To Find Direction In Life

Everything comes in time, and when you overthink and stress about certain things, you cease to see the opportunities around you. By keeping your mind open and trying new things, you will open yourself to new possibilities.

By clinging to this idea of having to find your purpose now, you will eventually end up limiting your opportunities and narrowing down the areas you could pursue. What you actually need is to keep those options open, even if it means living in uncertainty for a while.

Look At People Who Inspire You

Go through your Twitter, Instagram or Facebook feed and notice the kind of people you follow. Examine what kind of posts inspire you, what kind of stories move you and make you think ‘I wish I could do that too’. If you lack ideas of where to start, this is a great way to search for inspiration, and create a starting point for yourself. 

Maybe you want to start writing, maybe you want to learn more about technology, or real estate, or help someone, who also lacks direction. Maybe you see a product advertisement, and think that you could do the same or better.

Whatever it is, take a note of people you enjoy following and reading posts from, and try to adapt what they do to yourself. There is no shame in seeking inspiration that way, as long as you don’t blindly copy whatever they do. 

Have Fun With It

To make this experience of searching for direction more fun, certain practices can be incorporated to make yourself more accountable. 

One of my favorite things to do is to create a list of goals I want to achieve by a certain date, sort of like a bucket list.

Since 2019 is on our noses, a good way to do this would be to think about where do you imagine yourself in one year. What do you think is missing from your life now, that you could improve? Maybe you want to travel more, spend more time with your family, start a side hustle, take on a new hobby, read more books, the list goes on. 

find direction in life
Photo by Tirachard Kumtanom on Pexels.com

Whatever it is, put it in your bucket list for the year, add a check box to each item in the list, print it, and hang it somewhere, where you would constantly see it. It will be a great reminder of what your goals are, and will keep you motivated to spend at least a bit of time each day working towards achieving at least some of the goals in the list.

If setting goals for a year seem too overwhelming, why not try to do it for a month? This Ted talk explores the benefits of trying something new for 30 days rather than setting long-term goals. 

What’s Next

Think about the things you want to try, things other people do that inspire, put it down on your bucket list and give it a go. Determine what is best for you: making it into a long-term goal or setting a shorter timeline for yourself to try it. 

Go easy and keep an open mind. Don’t worry if it takes you longer to achieve something, and don’t be afraid to abandon projects, if it doesn’t feel right for you.

As long as you will listen to yourself and won’t overthink every decision that you make, you will find your way.

References

  1. https://tinybuddha.com/blog/4-lessons-on-how-to-find-the-right-direction-in-life/ 
  2. https://www.scotthyoung.com/blog/2010/09/30/feeling-lost/ 

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