It'll All Work Out: 4 Ways To Thrive In The Feeling Of Being Lost

by Jessica Cooper

“So, where do you see yourself in the future?”

This question can be daunting for many. Hearts pound. Thoughts meander. Some might even tell others what they think they want to hear, just so they stop asking.

Let me rewind for a second. Three years ago, I thought I knew exactly what I wanted. I had a boyfriend with whom I discussed marriage; I was studying to be a dentist. I didn’t know what kind of music I liked; I lived in Michigan, and I thought dying hair was a crime.

After I moved across the country, I realize I have completely different interests than I thought.

I now realize I love to skate; I love to surf; I have a knack for reggae, record players and men with beards. I don’t want to be a dentist, and wouldn’t you know it, I colored my hair.

Point being, welp, everything I thought I knew about myself has completely changed. So, where does that leave me?

Although I have been “finding myself” and have an idea of what I want to be and where I want to go, there are so many gaps to fill. At first, this thought terrified me. But, now, it’s invigorating me.

I hope these four ideals will inspire you, too:

1. Trust it will work out.

I like to believe nothing is truly a mistake (don't take this too literally), only a lesson learned. Your journey has molded you for the greater good and that journey was and is exactly what it needed to be.

It took every situation, every circumstance, every fall, every heartache, every failure and every success you have encountered to bring you to the now. So, make decisions. Do things. Try left and right.

You’re not losing time because “now” is right on time. Life’s an adventure and some of the wildest journeys create the most beautiful destinies. One day, you will look back at the big picture and see that things happened exactly how they needed to.

2. It’s all about perspective.

You haven’t failed. You’ve just found 2,000 ways that don’t work.

It’s all about how you look at it. If you think you’re lost, then you could be. But, I like to think I am gallivanting with purpose. I just don’t yet know my final destination.

Consider this: You can’t get lost if you don’t know where you’re going. It’s that simple. And, if you really think you are lost, know that you are lost in the right direction.

3. You’re not alone.

The pressure is on with social media. Everyone presents the best version of him or herself online. We see people appearing like they’re having a jolly good time, with no life confusion.

Think about it: Do you constantly post about how confused you are? If you do, hey, good for you for being honest! Most people don’t do this, though, which is why social media can bring many people down!

Understand that many people, just like you, don’t 100 percent know what they want.

4. Live by your own standards.

Perhaps society has an outline of what our futures should look like: go to college, get a job, get married, reproduce.

But, what if you want to run away, travel the world and live on the bare minimum? Well, do it. Too many people live in fear because of what society thinks is “normal.”

Don’t surrender your youth to the people or society you fear when you can be out there doing what you love. Life is too short. What’s important is that we’re all looking for ways to live our lives.

Everyone’s journey looks different. Besides, life would be pretty boring if we all took the same road.

None of this is to say that having a plan is bad. If you do, that’s great! However, do know that even if your journey goes a bit off the map, it’s okay. Relax. Breathe. Trust.

Maybe I don’t know what tomorrow brings -- I don’t even know what I am going to eat for dinner. But, what I do know is that unpredictability is what makes my life so incredibly exciting and beautiful.

I trust that everything will work out exactly as it should. So, where do I see myself in the future? I see myself being happy. I see myself going on countless adventures and chasing the sun.

Next time you feel lost, remember: Getting lost is a great way to find yourself.