As humans, we often find ourselves defining our lives by the situations we find ourselves in. We identify with our jobs, relationships, and experiences, and when these things change, we can feel lost and uncertain about who we are. However, it is important to remember that we have the ability to set our own intentions and to define our lives on our own terms– not just by the conditions we are in at the current moment.
In our Dig Deeper Journal, one of the journal prompts under the theme of intention is: "What would you name this chapter of your life?" It is meant to help you place your focus back on the present moment and define it in a way that gives you agency over your reality, that reminds you of the lessons you should pay attention to in this phase of your life, and that encourages you to savor the moment. Studies also show that being mindful in this way allows you to sustain more positive emotions in your day-to-day life.
It is also important to understand the ephemeral nature of the conditions of our lives and to practice defining who we are outside of them. In his book "The Power of Now," self-help author Eckhart Tolle writes that:
"When a condition or situation that the mind has attached itself to and identified with changes or disappears, the mind cannot accept it. It will cling to the disappearing condition and resist the change. It is almost as if a limb were being torn off your body. This means that your happiness and unhappiness are in fact one. Only the illusion of time separates them."
Tolle's words highlight the importance of being present and aware of the current moment without allowing it to define who we are. In order to practice doing this in your life keep these reminders nearby on a sticky note, in your notepad, or on the notes app on your phone:
1. Who you are is not where you are
2. You have the power to define your life on your own terms
3. Every season of your life holds lessons worth learning from