Maybe you don’t need a reinvention.
Maybe you don’t need to change your life.
Maybe you are not seven steps, a move, a job, a goal, a relationship away from the person you’re meant to be. Maybe you’re not being held back by what you don’t have, but by not appreciating what you already do.
The truth is that you are a work-in-progress, but you are already complete. The person who showed up to your life today is the person who was meant to arrive here. The place you are at is where you are supposed to be.
There are no shortcuts in this life. There is no magic milestone you’ll cross after which you’ll effortlessly coast through. I know it feels this way. I know the most compelling notion in the world is the idea that the reason why you’re uncomfortable is that you don’t have every single thing you think you’re supposed to have.
Do you want to know the truth? Getting them isn’t going to shift you the way you think it will. You might have more comfort, you might have one less challenge to face or problem to solve, you may make things easier for yourself, but the breadth and depth of life is something we cultivate. It’s not something we find, it’s something we become.
Maybe you don’t need a reinvention.
Maybe you need to be able to look in the mirror and see yourself the way a stranger would. Maybe you need to stop waiting, and wondering, if you’re okay enough to begin. Maybe you need to stop over-evaluating. Maybe you need to stop thinking so much. Maybe you need to stop asking more questions than you allow yourself space to receive the answers.
You are a constant evolution.
You are a piece of the whole of what you’ll be.
There are many lifetimes in this life, and they are often defined by the people we transform into, shift by shift.
Those versions of ourselves — the people we have left behind and the ones we have yet to find — they are not in competition with one another. They do not need to be vilified. You are not worse off because one day, you’ll be better. You are not greater than the person you used to be, either. Every version of yourself is doing the best with what they have, and that’s all you can really expect.
Maybe you don’t need a new identity, maybe you need to start realizing that the person you are today is worth savoring the joy of this day, maybe you need to start seeing yourself the way the rest of the world does, defined by your features and your strengths, not weighed down by your contours and weaknesses.
You are so familiar with yourself, so intimately and acutely aware of all you have not yet become, all the ways you’ve sold yourself short, all of the thoughts you’d hope nobody would ever know you’ve had. You are so critical because you know the full, whole truth of who and what you are, but what you have to remember is that everyone is complex. Everyone exists with contradictions and layers, places where they are hiding and showing up. Everyone contains and infinity of different versions of themselves, because every person they come across perceives them a bit differently, and so everyone we know has a different version of us in their heads.
You cannot spend your life trying to decode this.
You cannot continue to piece together your identity through the shreds of what you imagine other people see.
Because in the very same way that you often see those around you one-dimensionally, you’re seeing yourself that way, too.
The version of yourself you are most excited or freaked out or scared or convinced other people see? It’s how you see yourself. And to be honest, that’s the only version of yourself that matters, because that’s the only version of yourself that’s actually real.
Nobody else gets to say what’s enough for your life, whether you’ve arrived or not, whether you’re beautiful or not, whether you’re good at what you do or not. That is not for someone else to decide, it is for you to decide. It is for you to unravel and piece back together. It is for you to discover and find and revel in.
Often, when we feel that we’re not quite where we should be, it’s because we’re seeing ourselves the way we imagine others would. We’re imagining that we’re on a linear track forward, and with each hit and missed milestone, we are graded and rewarded accordingly.
This is so far from the truth.
You are your own universe. You are your own home. You are your own safe place. Just because you will be different tomorrow doesn’t mean that you’re not enough today. Just because you’re hungry for growth doesn’t mean you can’t also be filled with the knowledge that you’re right where you’re supposed to be.
And more than anything else, the truth is that the deepest transformation is not the moment at which we have the courage to uproot our lives and change course, but the moment at which we gain the clarity to see that there is not a single thing we need to adjust in order to be worthy of feeling everything we desire today.
We just have to learn to see it that way.