How To Write Your Life As A Process Of Self-Discovery And Self-Building? is an editorial piece written and shared by Pasithea Chan to The Ugly Writers.
How To Write Your Life As A Process Of Self-Discovery And Self-Building?
Growing up, I learned that every person is a book. A book can tell many stories not just one and each story can have many plots around the main plot. People as books need to be read not skimmed. We as authors of our books aka lives, need to sit down to write our stories in our books not just skim through them like our panster writing colleagues.
See life, is a little bit more complex than the regular books we tend to read or write for creative writing. Why? Because when we write we need to constrain our books within an executable exhaustive timeframe with an exhaustive list of characters and events. Life on the other hand doesn’t work that way. We may be just ourselves but where life takes us and what life puts in front of us, defies what can be put in paper or expressed in words.
See living life differs from going through life. Living life includes growing, discovering, and building yourself. And that is basically writing yourself your own book, your own story. But going through life is the act of skimming your book for experience and fables and stopping where you need or feel you need to read or revise. The distinction between both acts can be hard and sometimes unnoticeable when your hands, your mind, and your present are full. And by full I mean fully booked with shit to joggle, worry to tackle, and hassle to hustle.
Consider this, we are taught to think of our lifespan as a leaf on a branch in the tree of life. We are alive until our leaf falls from that tree and by then we are dead. And so, we are live through life thinking we live only once and that we need to go big or go home as in quit or die trying. We go on thinking we are lonely planets orbiting around an imaginary axis in our own ellipses towards a destiny we should achieve or at least trying achieving. In the process, we set out plans and build to-do lists to accomplish those goals thinking that’s how to get closer to our destinies. We pick up or drop things and people that don’t relate or understand us or force us to change. We build or tear down walls based on our falls or thralls.
Thing is, we don’t just change or wake up or make resolutions out of an experience or mistake. We do things from taking decisions or steps in processes through which we process things, events, feelings, and ourselves. In effect we are in constant change to achieve self-discovery and self-building. They may seem like two distinct processes that seem to preclude each other where one must precede another. But we forget that life is an assortment of orbits that happens in bits. Life as an assortment dictates going about it without colliding with those around and things that are in or part of the way.
The truth is you gotta live life to go through it not try to live it. Life can be experimental but it’s not an experiment and that’s the irony of life. You can test things in life, but life will test you. You think you can observe life when in fact you are observing yourself and your life as you go through life.
In the end, you will learn and discover yourself and your limitations by learning to distinguish between what you can control and what you can’t. You will experience what builds you and what distorts you. You will also realize building and discovering yourself come hand in hand because trial and error are only one part of the equation. Time shows you essence and value of not just things or people also yourself and what you should know from what you could know. In this line, many people like to cite generation gap and the so-called learning curve vs. difference in approach or mentality. But the truth is, in terms of people, life as an equation expressed in personality and experience, is the interaction that comes from solving the unknown “x” of why people change in its relation to the unknown “y” of why people don’t or can’t explain how they are with respect to the unknown “z” of how are we are supposed to understand them without stonewalling.
There is no right solution for this equation in life. But there is a very probable answer which is what I like to call “Don’t try to fix me”. See conversation as a form of communication is a bridge that either bridges the gap between “x” and “y” to reach a logical “z” as per the definitions I put ahead. Or sometimes, a good old supposition of let “x” be and “y” be is the best solution where “z” is the boundaries you set between two sets of notions “a” what you can control and “b” what doesn’t affect you unless you let it.
In essence, clarity and balance projected in being kind to one’s self are key to living life as a form of art in writing your own book the way you want it. You can’t be what you don’t know, and you can’t know what you don’t try. So try to be kind enough to yourself. Give yourself a chance to learn and discover who, how, why, and what you are before you decide to set plans as to how you wanna build yourself. Consider every day a page that you can fill but not necessarily a final draft. It’s okay if you can’t decide on a final text. Mistakes and crossing out things, events, people, feelings, and ideas are normal. Remember, they invented correctors or tipex because we all make mistakes no matter how careful we are.
As a rule of thumb, worry about what can make you sorry but don’t forget worry can make you carry loads that can take away all that’s merry. In the end, like beauty , life is in the eyes of its beholder- a matter of perspective and approach. You are a prisoner of your own devise and a designer of your own demise. So why not make your premise more like a promise that’s not too concise nor imprecise. If it’s too concise, it will leave out joy from your life’s slice. But if it’s imprecise it will make lies your only spice.
As parting words, I will emphasize on the importance of what one must internalize before they will realize that life requires that one specialize in the art of setting apart lies from what to prioritize. Don’t criticize or politicize what you are not ready to realize or apologize for. Don’t authorize or demonize what you might prioritize because life is the prize that lies within reach every sunrise. So build and discover because between forever and never is always a further and farther even when hurt and harder grow fonder as dreams grow yonder as you grow older.
Author’s Notes: Special thanks to #MyPrincess. You know yourself. Hope you find what you need and you smile.
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