While I was walking today, I started thinking about what I wanted to be when I was a kid, how that changed over the years, and how I felt about it; so I’m wondering about other people’s experiences with the same topic. What I wanted to be “when I grew up” changed over the years, based on books I read and TV shows I watched, and I guess, on how life knocked me around. Sound familiar?
So Many Life Choices
We start making life choices when we’re really young, even if we are too young to realize it. The thing that really changes as we grow up, is when we’re young, our decisions get made for us. When we get older, we get to make our own choices, and even not making a choice, is a choice. Here’s what I mean, using myself as an example…
Some Decisions Get Made for You
When I was little, like Kindergarten age and younger, I wanted to be a ballerina. Or a princess. Or a writer. I didn’t really care which. To me, they were all amazing because two of them got to wear pretty pink clothes and one gets to play with words and letters all day. (I almost got to take ballet classes, but someone who might as well remain nameless decided I was too fat to be a ballerina.) That’s another story, really, but it’s a perfect example of an adult making a life choice for a child. (By the way, I would still really LOVE to be a princess or ballerina.)
Fate and the laws of nature decided I didn’t get to do this next pair of examples. As I got older, popular media kicked in and I really wanted to be a genie (thanks to I Dream of Jeannie) or a witch (thanks to Bewitched.) Again, I didn’t really care which, I just wanted to be “magic” – you know – something bigger and more exciting than a kid sitting in a room watching TV. Unfortunately, I didn’t know any good spells that worked and no matter how many times I jumped off that picnic table, I just could NOT fly!
Some Things You Choose for Yourself
There were other things over the years that I wanted to do, like being a lawyer so I could help people who were treated unfairly, and being an interpreter so I could help people understand one another. Choices I made, by not staying in college when I was younger, took these out of the equation for me. Going back to college when I was older opened the doors for me to become a writer. (Finally – one of my childhood dreams came true, because I chose it and worked for it.)
A Common Thread in Your Early Life Goals
But, there’s a common thread, and I’m suggesting you look for your common thread…
Everything I ever wanted to be was either creative, empowering, or centered on helping others – and I find it satisfying incorporating those things into my writing. So, maybe, if you, for whatever reason, aren’t living the life of your dreams… maybe you can find a common thread in the things you’ve always loved, and make that common thread part of your life going forward.
So, anyway… this is getting long, and my point isn’t that some things happened to me when I was a kid.
My point is, I hope you’ll take a moment to think back to what you wanted to be when you were a kid.
- Did you achieve your childhood dream, or some version of it?
- If you didn’t, it isn’t too late.
- Are there common threads in the things you dreamt of being?
- You may have to dig to find them, but they are usually there and worth the effort and time spent soul-searching.
- Can you, today, make choices that make your life more satisfying and fulfilling?
- I would love to hear your thoughts on this, so please share if you feel inspired to.
You can’t undo decisions that were made for you when you were a child, and you can’t change your own past decisions either, but you can look for ways to honor that child inside of you who wanted to be magic, or a ballerina, or a lawyer, or whatever YOU wanted to be.