As we go through life, we have our own fair share of expectations of what it’ll look like. We thought of many things that ended up not coming to life because of how hard life is in itself. And often beat ourselves up for all those that could’ve been instead of patting ourselves on the back for all those that have become.
Perhaps when you haven’t had a long time in your tenure yet, you thought your first paycheck could afford all those you have in mind. That maybe you thought it could afford the wallet or bag that you want or even the shoes you want to give to someone else.
But reality check, these items can’t be bought that easily. There are bills to pay for rent to hand to your landlady, so you still have a roof above your head from this day onwards. There are groceries you have to meet every week so you won’t starve yourself to death. And there are insurance plans you have to meet so you won’t be troubled when the time comes and you finally have to retire.
There are a lot of things that we thought we could afford and things we thought we could already have within our reach when we earn money. But the truth is, these are mere expectations that often don’t get met. And we beat ourselves up for it, even to the point of considering ourselves as a failure just because we haven’t wrapped our hands around it.
Maybe when you were younger, you thought you’d be married already at 25 or already have your own home by 28 with a kid running around your yard and a husband who wraps his arms around your waist. Well, reality check, it doesn’t happen often. Maybe at 25, you are still paying off your student loan. Perhaps at 28, you are barely sparing yourself money for leisure because you are too caught up on planning and saving for the future.
We all have a life that we haven’t lived. And that is okay.
At some point in our lives, we all thought it’ll turn out to be a fairytale. It will seem like we can live up to the timeline we made, not realizing that external and internal factors can hinder these things from coming true. We thought we were ahead of everyone else because we had our own map with specified technicalities. We thought that’s what it took to have life figured out.
The truth is, it’s not.
When we progress through our life, we then realize these expectations can only turn into life unlived. And here we are to tell you that it’s okay. What’s not okay is beating yourself up for not living it, or what you often label as “achieving” it.
Life is hard. No matter how much others try to justify it as a mere challenge we can all go through and get over; life is hard. Unfortunately, it is what it is for most of us. And although it is just a phase for others, it is what it is like for a lifetime for those less privileged.
Keys to Letting Go of the Life Unlived
Change doesn’t happen overnight, and it is different from one to another. So, there isn’t one solution that fits all, but here are some keys to letting go that you can apply with how you live your life and letting go of the one unlived.
Make peace with the fact that it hasn’t been lived.
Acknowledging that the life you are imagining may not be lived at all within your lifetime is the key to letting go of it. This is because we can’t tell you to, “move on.” Moving on is idealistic so instead, acknowledge it. It is the first step in solving the problem, and it is also crucial to accepting it. There is power in accepting what has become and being resilient to what rather will soon come.
We know that letting go and making peace with it isn’t easy. In fact, according to Ajzen (2002) in his Theory of Planned Behavior, an individual’s attitude toward the change and a supportive social environment facilitate the change process. So, it is highly integral to accept that it is what it is and move forward knowing that it is okay to let that life remain unlived. And it is just as okay if it won’t happen overnight.
Pause and reassess different aspects that influence it.
Meditating and simply pausing from life to reassess your ideals and belief system helps let go of the life unlived. Our prejudice pressures us to achieve things beyond our reach and to go after things that are just too much. However, there is no shame in taking a day off and simply ironing out the cluttered mind you have.
To accompany you as you assess your thoughts, ideas, and belief system, we have an anxiety relief candle and a positive energy one that can help you feel better about letting go. It is undeniably not easy to do, but hopefully, it would be a little easier with accompaniments that comfort you.
Be resilient in dealing with it.
It’s easy to feel like you’re already done grieving the life unlived, most especially when you are caught up with your respective responsibilities. However, it hits most at night. When the silence is too loud, and all you have left to do is to accommodate your thoughts no matter how hard you try not to. So, we have a modern-day wellness practices eBook to help you deal with these recurring thoughts.
Inside this eBook are a set of practices that you can conduct yourself to feel better and deal with your thoughts better. As per Ajzen (2002), it all depends on the factors that affect your behavior. So, let the eBook guide you on what you can healthily choose to affect yours.
Waking up one day and realize you are still so far from what you imagined or drew. But what’s harder is to live in something that won’t ever happen and miss the opportunity to seize what is happening now.
Check out our bracelets to help you be grounded when need be! And remember that it is okay to not achieve so much as going thus far is already an achievement in itself.