When growing up, we often are robbed from the experience to find out own way as our "way" is often put in front of us by either our parents, teachers or mentors. While this is not bad by any means, we lose a survival sense. We lose our ability to determine what's best for us, as an individual.
While in school, I had the life of an athlete. I ran track and it was repetitive. Day in and day out. I got to the point where I began to hate running track and loathe the repetition of drills. Although I knew this was going to be my means of getting the education I wanted, it wasn't enough to make me like it.
It wasn't until I reflected on my father's life. He was a military man who served in Desert Storm. I kept thinking, "How the hell can I feel like this when my father was at war for years. Day in and day out." Once that thought set it, I decided to stick it out and make it happen and I'm grateful I did. But I noticed something about the people around me and I learned a few things along the way.
Throughout my journey I have learned a few key points that guide me to this day. One of the greatest points is that you have to have a meaningful and deeply rooted center/compass. When you have good time and tough times it is critical to have a proper coping mechanism so that you can make good decisions.
Poor decision making is one of the greatest problems with our society. People don't often think of the consequences of their behavior when doing an action. So, having a center such as my relationship with God really helps me make better decisions.
The other big highlight for me in my journey has been focusing on investing in myself. I believe service to others is critical to our happiness, but you have to invest in yourself regularly to make sure that you are improving your well being.
When you are well, you can help others be well. If you are not focused on being well in all phases then it is difficult for you to help others be well.
"You cannot save a sinking ship if yours is taking on water."
At the end of the day, you will do whatever you feel is best at the time and that's just human nature. You've done it, I've done it and we'll forever do it. I feel the only difference is where is your head and heart at during the time of this decision making process. If you aren't doing it for yourself or love of what you do, then what are you doing it for?
Dr. Darian Parker