A few years ago my mom told me that her biggest regret was not having my sister and me grow up in the church because we weren't raised with strong morals. She had recently gotten baptized, and it was understandable that she was reevaluating many of her life choices. She and my dad had gotten the sense that since my sister and I didn't grow up going to church, we didn't have a strong sense of what was right and wrong. I share this story with a matter-of-fact tone, as it made me start to question my morals as they seem to be changing as life goes on.
The other night I started thinking about whether it was possible to live a life without "self-wants". A large portion of my perceived pain and disappointment seems to stem from the excitement or anticipation of something I wanted to happen - but didn't happen. Most often these things don't happen because life happens, and other people's lives happen. I used to think that the problem was that I got too excited about things - as I feel those extreme emotional highs, but then also the balancing extreme lows.
So I started thinking that I'd like to stop focusing so much energy inward, and start focusing this energy outward. This energy that someone uses figuring out how to get the things they want - want to do, want to buy, want to see, want to experience - and instead push it outward to someone else. What does someone else want to do? What does someone else want to achieve? How can I help them get what they want.
Simeon Sinek, one of my favorite leadership speakers, one highlighted the fact that there is only a "self-help" section, but there isn't a genre of books about how to help someone else achieve their goals. Why is that?
Is it possible to put someone else's needs or aspirations before your own, to the extent that their goals become your own.
So I've been trying to change my mentality over the past few days. Trying to think less about ME, and more about how I could give and support those around me. Approaching the world and interactions with this intention, I find that contributing that little extra flare of energy or listening to someone with just a little more attention - seems to come much easier.
I had this new feeling tonight that I felt more connected with the world, and I wasn't quite sure why. Like as if the outline of my person was becoming a little less sharp - a little less defined, and I was starting to bleed into the universe. Everything seemed to be a little more fluid.
I like to imagine a world where everyone was looking after someone else, instead of on themselves. Like a standing slow moving whirlpool of energy and caring and giving to someone else. A world with a little more generosity.