"What do you want to be when you grow up?"
A question asked so regularly, casually and mindlessly when we were children. The answer to follow this was usually filled with innocence, honesty and backed with authentic candor.
The older we get, the rarer this question comes along. The older version of us comes across the likes of, "Why would you want to be? Keep going with the flow, play it safe, you've got a good thing going. Don't ruin it by wanting to be."
Think about it. Take a moment. What did you want to be when you grew up?
Now that you are grown up, what do you want to be? Who do you want to be? How do you want to be it, and have you found that route to get there? Are you, it? Or even on the path of it? If you aren't, how far away from what you wanted to be are you, or did you give up on being long ago?
Who's to blame? The situation, the background, the education, the drive, the ambition, the opportunities, the inability to take chances or the lack of wanting to be, and just to keep stilling at to do?
I don't remember what I wanted to be when I was a child, but I do remember, at sixteen, wanting to become a VJ on Channel [V] (haha, I know), and that casually floated into wanting to become a fashion designer at eighteen, followed by a 'something' in mass media at twenty-one.
Do you notice that I wanted to be a something, not even a specific someone as I grew older? It was probably a whim that my mind indulged in, or justified as more financially/mentally and therefore emotionally rewarding. Funnily, the older I grew, the vaguer my mental picture of who I wanted to be got. In my mind, it felt like I was taking a step farther away from who I wanted to be every day, so why even try to revive that version.
All I could outline and see was my daily to-dos. Oh, my faithful, never-leaving-my-side, mindlessly easy, unchallengingly loving, to-dos. They ensured I was taking one day at a time, and just kept going with the flow.
Isn't that the most reliable self-strategy? Do your best, take each day as it comes, one step at a time, and go with the flow. I thought the same. Don't get me wrong, I'm a believer too, sometimes going with the flow is all you can do.
So, there I was, doing my very best, taking one day at a time, flourishingly hurdling a to-do list one after the other, and giving every opportunity that came my way my absolute hundred percent.
While doing, I stopped thinking about being.
I just had endless lists to do, and not a moment to think about to be. It's a flawed way to think, I know. Comfortable and stagnant, but more often than not, most of us get hauled up in life's to do's and stop thinking of to be's.
Have you guys come across, Street Food Asia on Netflix? Not so long ago, I was watching it to satiate my undying love of artisan quick food from the streets, and I remember so clearly, being absolutely awestruck by the intro of the second episode. It starts off with a Japanese man who says,
"You have to be strong to create your own flow, you can't expect good results if you just yield to flows. How can you create a current if you're just going with the flow?"
I remember having goosebumps, rewinding, and relistening this piece of dialogue, a couple of times to really digest it.
His words pierced my very soul. It was then and there that I realized, that I want to create my own current - scratch that - I want to be that very current that shakes the deep blue oceans up.
How can I be this current?
Consumed in trying to understand my why, I sat there thinking, what do I want to be, and why? Why haven't I been looking for things to do, to get me to closer to who I want I be? A question that hadn't been asked of me, in my mainstream adulting, or prodded often enough by my solely and wholly doing mind.
What do I want to do to get to where and who, I want to be?
The adulter we get, the blurrier our version of being, becomes. The reasons could vary; could range anywhere between comfort zone, to security, to settling, to going with the flow unquestioningly, until the very rare moments we are confronted with that empty growing ball inside of us, serving the constant reminder to keep being more, and not just mindlessly doing.
Shunning that sentiment away is easier initially until it uncovers ways to stick around longer, to remind you of your lack of being.
So, I sit here, and I ask you, what do you want to be? Are you it?
If not, focus on coining your to-do, to get closer to getting to your very neglected to-be.
With love, and musings,
Stories By Giggles
P.S. Begin, you never know what's brewing (cheekily referencing myself from my homepage.)