I entered an existential void after publishing a book that marked the end of a 5 years self-discovery journey.
While the fulfilment of nailing a personal goal was sweet, the glorious moments passed in the blink of an eye.
Having all the freedom in the world to create anything I want, I was lost in an infinite space.
What was wrong with me? I interrogated myself harshly.
It was until I interviewed a few people for a book project that I realized this cyclical pattern of peak and trough is a law of nature.
Do something you love and let go of ego
“Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you really love.” — Rumi
My friend R had the time of her life when she became one of the finalists of a top national reality singing competition. She was living the life of a celebrity and anticipating a bright singing career ahead of her.
What came after was totally out of her expectation.
Her family business collapsed and reduced her personal saving to zero. Half a year later, her mentor abandoned her without a contract.
She was lost and depressed until she confided in her sister.
When she was asked about what she loves doing besides music, she reminisced her love for cooking.
She threw away the ego of an artist and started a home-based catering service for students. After getting back on her feet being a cook, she started teaching piano lessons and further her studies in music.
Even though she missed the shot for a glamorous life, she is contented being where she is, creating every good thing in life with her best effort.
The next thing you do is not going to define the rest of your life
“A mistake should be your teacher, not your attacker. A mistake is a lesson, not a loss. It is a temporary, necessary detour, not a dead end.” — Anonymous
Sometimes, we are paralysed by choices because we are scared of making the wrong move.
After completing a 2 months cycling trip along the coast line from Vancouver to Los Angeles, H came home with a new formed belief that he can do anything as long as he sets his mind on it.
However, he couldn’t decide what’s next and fell straight into a depressing mode of existential crisis.
He wandered without a purpose until he came to the realisation that whatever he chooses to do next doesn’t define his whole life.
He figured that he loves adventures and he was confident about doing it better than the last cycling trip.
H packed his bag and got a one-way ticket to Asia.
When I met him in Malaysia, I was in awe with his adventure that I never had the courage to embark on.
Stop resisting and start living in the moment
Resistance is about believing that you’re vulnerable and holding a stance of protection — which only hold you in a place of not letting in the Well Being that would otherwise be there. — Abraham Hicks
Like H, I was paralysed by choice because I tried too hard to think up a plan that makes something out of myself.
After spending the last 5 years exploring life, I deprived myself from the freedom of trying.
Whatever I do next, it has to work. This illogical theory sucked the joy out of new adventures.
I neglected the fact that life happens when I least expect it, and opportunities always come when I am contented being where I am.
I had never planned my life in the past 5 years, and yet everything worked out perfectly at the right time to bring me where I am today.
Don’t beat yourself up
Life consists of cyclical pattern of up and down, just like businesses or the stock market.
I had gone through many cycles of triumphant and lost to trust that life wouldn’t throw me a problem that I couldn’t solve.
The process of falling, getting back up, reaching the peak and falling down again is like a training gym that prepares us for our highest potential to create the biggest impact we are here to make.
Wherever you are, trust that your next masterpiece is already in you.