Last week, lying in bed and reading ‘The War of Art’ at the crazy time of 8 pm (yeah, I’m asleep by 8.30), one passage hit me right in the gut.
It was all about our internal struggle with acceptance, approval and search for meaning in society.
The very next day a close friend asked me personally…
“What do you really need?”
Hesitantly, I replied,
At that moment it’s all I could think of. Life is a haunting series of searching for this one thing.
Through our twenties, we begin our careers not quite being sure if this is the path we are destined to walk. Alone time is filled with ‘maybes’, ‘what-ifs’, and ‘what the hell am I doing?’
And then, through the thirties and fourties (although I’m not there yet) I can imagine it’s the same thing. A constant search for validation through the external (relationships, promotions and collecting 'stuff') and the internal (reflection, questioning and love).
Although the person in the mirror may change over the course, the underlying motive for our actions still permeates all we do.
We need validation.
My own life has been an endless search for validation.
I’ve applied for 4 different university degrees, travelled the world for month’s at a time solo, read thousands of books and moved to the complete opposite side of the world; all searching for someone, or something, to approve of me.
To give me that all-important, ever-elusive… yes.
I know I have an endless supply of value to give to the world, yet I’m still searching for this notion to be validated.
We are all like this.
We have unlimited potential. Our experiences, thoughts and personalities make us unique beyond belief. In this age, we can literally be anything and anyone we want.
This is a scary thought. With our uniqueness, combined with unlimited possibility, how do we know if we are right?
I can’t tell you who… or what… or how you will find your own validation. Right now, you, yourself, don’t know what’s going to finally tick the box and allow you to have an afternoon off in peace and quiet - shushing your unruly, questioning conscience.
But as much as you’d like to believe, it’s not going to come from someone, or something, else.
This is humanity’s greatest personal question...
And the answer will only come from inside.
It’s your job, mission and lifelong purpose to uncover it.