Did you Ever "Feel Lost" in Life?
If you’ve ever felt lost, you’re shooting par for the course as a human being. Everyone faces this challenge sooner or later. Feeling lost is a sign that you believe your life is on the wrong track.
You may feel like your life lacks meaning and that your future is uncompelling or just uncertain. This is a great time to take a long, hard look at yourself. You can learn a lot during this period. When I was dealing with my depression nearly a decade ago, I was feeling a bit lost. I have been self-employed for the last 23 years and done most of it alone and by myself.
When business goes sideways it is easy to feel a bit lost if there is no one around to share ideas with. It could be related to a career or maybe a relationship ending or loss of a friend or family member. Any of these things can make you start second guessing yourself and your direction.
Maybe one of these ideas can help you get back on track.
Try these activities to find yourself and create a future that inspires you again:
1. Make a list of things you'd like to see in your lifetime
One of the reasons you may feel lost is that you don’t have anything to look forward to. You can change that quickly by making a list of all the things you’d like to see in your lifetime. Here are a few ideas to stimulate your thinking.
- Take a tour in Egypt to see the Pyramids
- The Great Wall of China
- Ride a horse on the beach
- An opera in Italy
- The Grand Canyon
- The birth of a litter of puppies
- Old Faithful
- View Mars through a high-quality telescope
- A Rolling Stones concert
- Make your own list and don’t be bashful. Now pick one thing you can do in the next six months. If your list is too extravagant, and six months is an impossible timeline, think harder and add a few more items to your list that you could do in the short-term.
2. Make a list of things you'd like to do in your lifetime
What would you like to do or learn? Play bridge or chess? Speak Russian? Master the piano? Go waterskiing? Learn to paint? Take a zipline through the Costa Rican jungle?
I love online learning and I have found some online course related to Japanese Calligraphy, Drawing, Art Therapy just to name a few. Maybe you’d like to write a book. I would like to write a book or multiple books in my life.
- Think of something you can do in the next few weeks or months and start making plans.
- Go whitewater rafting
- Visit a wolf sanctuary
- Attend the Olympics
- Meditate with monks in a monastery
- Volunteer for a favorite charity
- Take an art class
- learn to play an instrument
3. Revisit your old goals
You had a lot of plans when you were a kid. You wanted to be a cowboy or an astronaut or raise llamas. You had more realistic plans as you aged, but you still had plans that interested you. Perhaps you can rekindle some of that enthusiasm by revisiting those plans from the past.
- Think about why you abandoned those plans. Maybe the reasons you changed your mind are no longer valid. Maybe they were never valid in the first place.
If you are like me, you may have a goals book or journal that you tend to keep all your written down goals. Sometimes going back and reviewing old goals is inspiring because you realize you did several of the things you wrote down, but you might also find a few that slipped through the cracks that might be perfect to work on now.
If you never wrote down goals too much in the past, maybe start a goals journal now. Write down some of the goals we’ve been discussing and put a date on when you wrote the goal and maybe even a date when you would like to accomplish the goal by.
4. Realize that your feelings aren't unusual
Your current mental state is quite common. PsychCentral digs in a bit more on what feeling lost means and how to find yourself. One point made is how this can be similar to depression and it is also said that 1 in 10 in America deal with depression annually so it is much more common than we often think. In 2020, an estimated 66.0% U.S. adults aged 18 or older with major depressive episode received treatment in the past year. Beyond that, Anxiety disorders are highly treatable, yet only 36.9% of those suffering receive treatment.
I guess I share this data because we MUST eliminate the stigmas related to these things as there are ways we can treat many of these things related to mental health or feeling lost, and these things are more common than we think but the shame keeps folks for asking for help.
How many people make the right choices consistently in life? Think about this… nearly every adult wishes they could go back and choose a different career. This includes doctors, lawyers, and successful business owners.
It is rumored that approximately half (52%) of American employees are considering making a career change this year, according to Appollo Technical.
Mistakes pile up over the years, and in your mind, the grass is always greener somewhere else.
- This is all a part of the human experience. The next part of your experience is working though it.
5. Realize that you have a lot of control over your situation
It’s easy to feel hopeless, but you have a lot of choices available to you. It’s a matter of being brave enough to choose the best one and run with it. I might suggest finding a way to work on your purpose in life. A great way to take control of your life is to define your purpose and use that purpose to guide you.
For example, my purpose is to challenge people to become innovative leaders so that we can change the world together.
Defining this took me a long time, but even getting started down this path gave me a lot more direction and control over my life. Once I got this final version dialed in it became a filter to keep me in alignment with what I want to be doing and who I want to be. It helped me clarify how I wanted to show up in the world and how I could be my authentic self.
6. Find the limiting belief
There are plenty of things you might want to do, but maybe you just don’t think you can do them. You might believe that you’re too old, need more education, lack the necessary finances, and the list goes on. Look at your limiting beliefs and work through them.
Feeling lost is synonymous with lacking direction. Finding a new direction for your life is the key to stop feeling lost.
Find a few things you’d like to do and see this year. Plan a future that you find interesting and exciting. Once your mood is lifted, you’ll see the world with new eyes and be able to find new opportunities that excite you.