Several years ago, my mother sent me a box filled with memorabilia from my early school days. When the box arrived, I couldn’t wait to open it. Inside I found academic and athletic awards, stacks of report cards, and a faded program from my first school play. I also found a short story I wrote in fourth grade and a handwritten draft of my high school graduation speech. Each of these items brought back fond memories of a time in my life when I was certain of who I was, and the things that made me happy. As I pored over the contents, an essay I wrote for a college scholarship application caught my eye. As I read it and reminisced, I was drawn to one particular sentence.
“By not limiting myself, I can continue to put the pieces of the person together and one day reach self-actualization.”
When I first read those words I laughed and said to myself, “What kind of 17-year-old kid talks like that?” Those words were deep for someone who still wore braces on her teeth. But as I read the sentence a second time, I suddenly thought, “This is me!” Those words reflected what I truly valued. I realized that my passion for ‘maximizing potential’ had been brewing inside of me for a long time. While taking a trip back into time, unexpectedly, I found a clue to my identity.
You can gain awareness about your true self anywhere—sitting in a meeting at work, standing in the checkout line at the grocery store, or spending quality time at home with your family. If you stay curious and alert, everyday activities and situations will provide endless opportunities for self-discovery.
You’ll find truth if you keep looking.