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Getting in Touch with Reality

April 21, 2014

By Jacinta Hin

Life is what happens to you while you are busy making other plans. – John Lennon

In our fantasy-laden Western world many of us are on a never-ending mission to find purpose and happiness, believing that a ‘permanent and perfect’ life is lying in wait somewhere in the future, ready to be discovered and claimed, but by default also out of reach.

Busy looking for answers, confused by society’s norms and the latest self-help craze, we forget to recognize purpose and meaning in everyday life. We dream of podium-worthy applause, a promotion at work fitting our idea of career progression, a soulmate to sweep us of our feet.  The magic each day brings passes by unnoticed. A flower about to burst in bloom, the smile of a stranger, the appreciation of a co-worker for work well done… its significance replaced by imaginary scenes of success and romance.

We fantasize about life, while living out of sync with the one that is uniquely ours, allowing it to pass near unnoticed.

We look for meaning in the external world: relationships, the career path and jobs we end up in, the place(s) we call home, the things we collect, the conversations we have, the topics that have our attention, the activities to which we dedicate our time and everything we do to relax and stay healthy.

We look for meaning in the internal world and get hopelessly lost, because we don’t know how to connect our findings with the reality of our careers, self-image, family situation and so on.

Know that feeling life is slipping by, happening for others, but you’re not invited to the party?

You may be at a crossroads, dreaming of something new. But instead of taking steps towards the changes you crave for, you zone out whenever you have the chance, escaping your reality rather than facing it.

Our ability to imagine and dream is both a blessing and a curse.

Used creatively, our imagination becomes a richly fertile treasure ground for new ideas, a space for old dreams to make a reappearance, where we are free of constraints and consequently can connect with aspects of ourselves that are normally out of sight.

But used as a sanctuary to avoid reality, we could end up in an eternal state of limbo.

Spending the occasional time in limbo certainly is healthy, requisite even to prepare for new beginnings, but now and then we have to get real about our actual life and take action. Work through an issue, plan for a career change, get our finances in order, have that dreaded conversation with someone.

When we get in touch with reality, not only do we pave the way for growth and progress, we also begin to see how purpose and happiness follow along, embedded in every moment. Noticing the smile of a stranger, we smile back and feel happy.  We turn out the light at night, inspired by the wisdom of a book that feels as if was written just for us, pleased because we had the discipline to read instead of mindlessly watching television.  Instead of chasing after purpose, we become purposeful in our actions and choices and in how we relate to others.

Your life is happening right here and now.

What do you need to get real about?

Also by Jacinta:

- Where are you in Life?

- Getting Ready for the New Year

- Letting Go of Resistance

- Trusting Intuition

- Let’s Get Lost

 

LABELS:   Connection   Crossroa   Dreams   Fantasy   Imagination   Jacinta Hin   Life   Now   Reality  
About the author: Jacinta Hin was born in the Netherlands and has been living in Tokyo, Japan, since 1989. Her professional background is in human resources, career management and coaching. She is passionate about helping people, herself included, discover new perspectives of possibility, move to embracing and working with their transitions, and designing and realizing changes aligned with who they truly are and what they truly want from their lives.
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