I’m sure this is the same for a lot of people on this planet. My quarter-life crisis didn’t come to me until I turned 30. When I was 25, I was still foolish, still searching, and still dreaming. I thought everything would work out perfectly, because I still had a lot of time. But when I turned 30, all of a sudden, there was this alarm bell that rang out in my head that said, “Warning, warning, you are 30, and you haven’t accomplished anything useful with your life.”
That was the whole point of my crisis. My existential crisis, or my quarter life crisis, whatever you wish to call it. I hadn’t accomplished anything that I could be proud of until then. Yes, I had filled my life with stuff. I had filled my life with nonsense. I had done things. So many things. Things to speak about, things to brag about, things to fill my conversations and head with.
But those things, were they meaningful to me in any big way? Not really. They didn’t touch my heart. They were fun to speak of, and other people would go buggy-eyed when they heard me tell my lifestory. But I knew in my own heart that I had not reached my highest potential.
What You Can Be, You Must Be, Abraham Maslow Said
I have this quote by Abraham Maslow saved on a document that I read every week. It’s an important phrase to remember. It’s something I have been living by since I turned 30.
You see before I turned 30, I worked on stuff that mattered to other people. Everyone told me that if I made a whole lot of money, I would be ecstatically happy and joyful. So I did that. I focused on it. I worked on making money. Realizing after it that no, it didn’t make me happy, in fact, it made me miserable.
Okay, new plan.
Maybe if I focused on my health, and became the fittest person ever, that would make me happy? I tried that for a few years, and that didn’t make me happy either. In fact, it just made me even more miserable, because I was focused on eating healthy, and I didn’t let myself enjoy one of my main pleasures in life – Food.
Then I read this quote by Maslow. “What one can be, one must be.”
Wow!!! That’s when I realized what my issue was throughout my life. I was wasting my time being things for other people, things other people wanted me to be. But it was unrelated to what my true potential was seeking. What my self-actualizing self was wanting.
There were some things in my head, since I was a child that I really, really wanted to do. But because I was listening to society’s dictations for me, I ignored my own needs and desires, and focused on other things. Money. Fame. Fortune. Relationships. Love. Stuff. Gems.
That’s what I was told I should want. I didn’t want that at all. What did I really want, then?
Doh, I Had No Idea What My Heart Truly Wanted
As I sat down in my 30th year to figure out what I truly wanted, I realized one really important and scary thing. Oh god, I have no idea what I want. The truth was I was scared to death of putting down on paper what I really wanted. I was afraid, because I didn’t know if that was my heart speaking or society’s voice in my head.
I was afraid also because I knew once I wrote it down, once I knew what it was, I would have to work on it. There was no excuse after that – I couldn’t run away from my purpose any longer.
Confusion reigned in my mind for a long time. I had to disentangle myself from years and years of conditioning. I had been told for years on end that this is what I should want, and this is what is good for me – money, fame, fortune, etc. Removing myself from so much conditioning, and then listening to what my heart truly wanted was a hard process.
I Hated It
It was really, really shitty, in fact. I hated every moment of it.
I wanted to run away. I wanted to hide. It was maddening. It was frustrating. What’s wrong with me? Why can’t I just be normal? Why can’t I just follow society’s dictates? Why do I have to complicate everything!
There was a lot of noise around me. A lot of people asking me to become normal again. Asking me to give up on these nonsensical dreams. Asking me to just focus on living a good life as society has told me to, over and over again. Why are you rocking the boat, they asked me again and again?
But I knew I had to keep on trying. It was important to me. It was important to my spirit, my soul, my heart.
Meditation Helped Calm Down The Noise, So I Could Listen To My Heart’s Truth
That’s why I love meditation so much. In fact, meditation was my saviour. It is the reason I am so truly alive and happy today. I meditated every morning during this difficult, tumultuous time. I wanted to know the answer, the truth of my heart’s desire, but there was so much noise around me.
So much noise!
I couldn’t hear my heart through all of that noise. I had to calm down, slow down, become still, and meditate, in order to quieten down all of those noises in my head. There were so many voices, voices of my parents, my teachers, my mentors, leaders, society, and so many more. They were all telling me different things. You should want this or you should go for this.
[bctt tweet=”I shut them up with meditation.” username=”BoomShikha”]
As I meditated, and went in deep, the voices shut down, and left one by one. Until the only voice that was left, was the little squeaky one of my heart. I hadn’t heard her in a long time. She was tired of shouting her truth. She had lost her voice from trying to get my attention.
But now I could hear her. Thank God!!
My Heart Said Things That I Didn’t Want To Hear, TBH
To be truly honest with you, I hated what my heart said at first. She told me the truth of my existence. She told me why I was here. And I wanted a different answer.
Please, is there no different answer? Something cooler? Something snazzier?
No, there wasn’t. The answer remained the same. It has been the same since I was ten years old, and first picked up a pen and paper to write down a story. It has been the same since I was twelve years old and reciting random stories to the neighbourhood kids to entertain and titillate their minds, with creativity and imagination.
It was always been the same. I knew the answer was going to be this, but I didn’t want to hear it.
You are a writer, she said. You’ve always been a writer. You can’t run away from it anymore – go write now.
The answer was simple, but it wasn’t really that simple. I ran away from it. I didn’t want to hear it. Why do I have to be a writer? I’m scared. What if I never make any money from it? Why am I even bothering? Everyone is a better writer than me. It’s scary. I don’t wanna.
The tantrum went on for a few months. Finally, I could ignore the voice no longer.
I Started Putting Myself Out There In A Major Way
I was 32 or something by that point. I had wasted 2 years hiding from the truth. God, I’m such an idiot.
But that was my path. No more. I decided enough was enough. I started really putting myself out there in a creative way. I started a podcast. I started an online business and started creating courses. I started writing novels on a regular basis, pumping out one every few months.
It was all for the major good. At first, I saw no traction. In fact, I hated every moment of it. But I had a schedule to follow. I had to write a 1000 words every day. I had to put a podcast out every week. And so on. I didn’t think. I just followed my creative streak. I just created on a daily basis. Whatever it was, it didn’t matter. One thing fueled another. My podcast episode would trigger something in my fiction novel. And vice versa.
I loved every moment of it. I was finally doing something that I was born to do. It didn’t matter about the money. I had a job to fuel those costs. I was working with my creative side finally.
As always, it took a while, a long while for me to start seeing any traction.
It has been two years since I began this mad journey. Of putting myself out there over and over and over again. And finally, I am seeing the fruits of my labour. People message me almost every day telling me that my words inspire them, my courses are selling, my podcast is being downloaded, my YouTube channel is gaining subscribers.
And this is just the beginning.
This Is Just The Beginning Of It All
I am so excited to be even typing these words out. Because that is the truth for me right now. I don’t know when I am going to die. I don’t know if it’s tomorrow. Or day after tomorrow. Or in ten years.
But I will die soon. As we all will. Sooner than we want. I want to ensure that these years, these precious few years, are spent in absolute creative splendour. I want to write a lot, I want to create a lot, I want to put myself out there over and over again.
That’s all I care about. That is my highest priority.
What I can be, I must be. And I am, is a creative being. I am a creative person. I need to be creative on a daily basis. A day without creativity is a day wasted for me. Whatever it might be, whether it be writing or podcasting or video creation or course creation, I have to spend every day doing something creative.
That is the only way out for me. The only way for me to truly respect myself again. To believe in myself. To listen to my heart’s murmurings.
My Heart Is Satisfied Now – She Doesn’t Need To Shout Anymore
My heart is good now. She doesn’t need to shout to get my attention anymore. She just speaks and I listen asap. She told me she wanted to move to a place by the ocean, so that she could do more creative work, and I listened.
[bctt tweet=”She tells me a lot of stuff every day. Do this, and I do it. Do that, and I follow suit.” username=”BoomShikha”]
My life is short. As is yours. We all run around in a mad rush to do nothing. I wasted the first 30 years of my life doing absolutely nothing of use. I did a lot of things, but they were all useless. Absolutely useless in gaining any kind of momentum in my heart’s desire.
I think that’s why I was so miserable all the time. Because if we are meant to be doing something on this planet, and we are not doing it, we are going to be miserable, no matter what we are doing, and how we are living. We could be living the most luxurious life possible, but if we aren’t doing what we are meant to be doing, what our heart wants to be doing, then it all turns to ashes in our minds.
It’s all useless.
I was living the “perfect” life according to so many people out there. They would be envious of me. But I didn’t get it. I absolutely didn’t understand why they were jealous. I hated my life, before 30.
Now, I’m 34, And It’s Just The Beginning Of My Journey
I’m just getting started, people. Such an exciting time to be alive right now. Technology, Internet, and Freedom Of Speech are all turning this world into an absolute delight to live in, especially for a creative being like me.
I can actually make money from my creative endeavours, and I love everything about this world. I’m so excited to be alive, and I’m so excited to be here.
Are you turning 30 soon? Don’t despair if you feel like you haven’t done anything. In fact, I would say I truly started living, in absolute perfection, when I turned 30. Before that, I was sleepwalking through life. I wasn’t thinking, I wasn’t feeling, I wasn’t listening. I was sleepwalking.
Now, finally, finally, finally, I am truly living.
A lot of people will not understand my lifestyle. It’s not my problem. In fact, it’s not your problem either. No one needs to understand our lifestyle. Our heart needs to understand it, and believe it. It’s our life. It’s my time. It’s my precious time on this planet, and it will be over before I know it.
Do I want to spend it trying to explain myself to others? Or to do my thing?
I choose to do my thing to the best of my ability. What I can be, I must be. And that’s the adage from Maslow that I follow to a tee.
Now, I implore you to do the same. WHAT can you be? What must you be? What are you right now? How does one differ from the other? Can you do something about it? Do it!! Now!! Now!!! Now!!!!
The time is now.