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Your Little Corner of Time

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Look away from the screen for a moment. Take a half-minute off from your blog-reading and look at the people and objects around you right at this instant. Get a good feel for the moment’s scenery and emotional tone, and when you’re done, read on.

(Do it now.)

Back?

I have a question for you:

Where are you at this exact moment in your life?

Obviously you’re in front of a computer screen of some kind (maybe a smartphone), so give us a little bit more context than that.

Where are you right now, physically, and how did you get there?

When I ask “how did you get here” I’m not looking for something like, “I rode my bike.” I mean, what circumstances and incentives brought you to this exact place you’re sitting now? What were you looking for that brought you here?

And I don’t mean these as rhetorical questions either. Tell me in the comment section below. Where are you right now, what’s going on, and how do you feel about that? Use a fake name and email address if your current moment involves hiding from bounty hunters or smuggling knockoff Ray-Bans and you’re concerned about privacy.

There are a lot of places you could be. Time and space can serve up a gazillion unique little corners to find oneself in. Maybe you’re riding a creaky city bus, iPhone in hand, on your way to a job you just started Monday. Or you might be first one in the office this morning and the main overhead lights aren’t on yet, because you wanted to tackle something you know you should have done yesterday. Or you could be in your roommate’s room, ready to click the browser closed and pretend you weren’t using his laptop, because you know he gets home from the gym around now.

But you’re right here. Look away from the screen again for a second.

That’s yours, for now. Your lot. This little corner of time you’re in — is it the result of a direct decision on your part, or is it more a product of what you might call “happenstance”? Did you decide to be here or did it sort of settle out this way?

Are you waiting on something? Avoiding something? Excited for something?

What moment have you arrived at, in this, the Greatest Story Ever Told?

And one final follow-up question, if you feel like answering it:

Do you feel like you are where you’re supposed to be?

I know that’s a subjective question and there are a lot of ways to look at it, but it’s definitely answerable.

That’s all I want to know. Please tell me. The reason why will come in the next post.

R

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C May 27, 2011 at 7:26 pm

I’m in a cottage in a small town far from where I grew up. I came here with my partner for the summer, before following her either to Victoria or Halifax in the fall.

I have no job, I haven’t met anyone here yet. I’ve been wasting a lot of time since arriving. The book I have been planning to write over the summer is scarcely started.

Improvement. I can’t stop thinking about self-improvement, how I should be working on my writing or making money or taking an interest in people and making friends. I feel profoundly boring.

And now kind of whiny.

This is definitely where I’m supposed to be though. I couldn’t imagine it any other way.

Gabs May 27, 2011 at 7:42 pm

I’m in my room of a house I just bought with my brother after 3 years of hard work. I’m in my room on a Friday night feeling sorry for myself not knowing what to do with my life. Feeling out of place and not exactly where I thought I was going to be at this age.

Is this where I’m suppose to be? I guess for the time being yes because I was able to realize that I needed to make some changes in my life. I needed to take control of my life and start building my happiness. I needed to realize things I was doing wrong in order to grow. I just hope I wan find some balance and get new plans for what I want in my future and I want to do with my life.

Peter May 27, 2011 at 11:29 pm

I’m sitting in a hospital waiting room in Seattle. My mother is sitting across from me. In a room a few feet away is my cousin and his immediate family. He came to the hospital yesterday with stomach pain to find out he had multiple aneurisms developing on a major artery and that he was going to need emergency surgery. Today we found out the aneurisms are do to a rare genetic autoimmune disease and he won’t even be able to undergo surgery without first going through chemo and steroid treatment. If the surgery is a success he”ll still have to continue chemo therapy for the rest of his life. He’s 23.
I spend all my time worrying about things that I think will happen only to be blind sided by reality. And so I find myself in an uncomfortable chair in a blandly colored hospital waiting room feeling sorry for myself while he is the one who actually has to deal with this.

Alexandra May 27, 2011 at 11:44 pm

I’m sitting on my couch at home. Usually I would have some music on, or the TV, some kind of background noise… But I am enjoying the silence (well, almost silence, except for the hum of my heater, my laptop and my washing machine).

How did I get here? Well. My relationship ended two days ago. For the third time. And I know that I need to walk away this time, because I have ignored things for too long. Unfortunately, heartbreak doesn’t get any easier the more it happens… But I know that things could not have continued the way they were going without both of us completely self destructing. Sadly, knowing that doesn’t make it hurt any less..

It has finally sunk in that, as the cliche goes, until I love myself, I can’t share my life with another person. And I have a lot of demons to face before I can even get close to loving myself. The thought of that is so overwhelming. But I have turned my back on my issues for too long, hoping they would just go away. Yeah, that really hasn’t worked so well.

David, this is my first time posting. I’ve been reading and re-reading your posts for a while now, and, to add my voice to your thousands of other fans, I just love it. It’s given me hope and comfort through some dark dark moments, and I thank you so, so much.

So that’s where I am and how I got here. I know that I will be ok. And I know that I am exactly where I am supposed to be, in this exact moment.

David May 28, 2011 at 10:06 am

I’m blown away by these little vignettes of real, live human lives. I’ve received a lot of emails too. Everyone is right in the middle of an epic story.

A few excerpts that say so much:

I’m at work now, my place of refuge from “home.”

This is a god shot. I am 3 days sober, sitting in my bed miserable and not able to sleep.

I realize I spend far too much time on the computer, neglecting the person I love the most. I find I expect him to change when I do not.

I’m sitting in front of my work computer on my last day of work before maternity leave. […] My feet are freezing because the sun was so deceiving this morning and I wore sandals.

My responsibilities are minor which often makes me question if this is what I want to do for the remainder of my life.

If I had it to do all over again knowing what I know now, of course I would have done a lot of things differently. But (I remind myself regularly,) I don’t have it to do all over again, and neither does anyone else, so stop whining! This is where I am.

…still in my bed at 10:23 in the morning. As I sit here, like I have repeatedly when I should be out and about appreciating the world that’s in front of me, I continue to think. Think, think, and think.

There are very many seemingly contradictory emotions about my situation; gratitude and defeat, anxiety and yet a deeper peace and acceptance, things being “ok” and “not ok”, or ok even though it is not ok … I accept that wherever I am is a decent stand in for where I am “supposed” to be. I try not to resist the present situation too much; it’s a cloudy day, but pleasant.

I was meant to graduate this year, but I’m a bit behind. I’m ok with that though, I don’t feel ready to enter the real world quite yet, although I’m getting there.

I left a job I didn’t love and I have no idea what I’m going to be doing when I get to Austin. It’s been a three year process to get me to this moment. Two bouts of cancer (I beat it), the break up of an eight year relationship, finding myself and making strong connections (and re-connections) of my own. I’m sad, scared, nervous, relieved, excited, happy and grateful at the same time.

I am in a home in NH that is 1,500 miles away from my husband in FL. I came here to get it ready to sell it or be foreclosed, whichever comes first. I have not yet been able to find the resources I need to keep it, so I am working through the process of letting it go.

I can’t stop thinking about self-improvement, how I should be working on my writing or making money or taking an interest in people and making friends. I feel profoundly boring. And now kind of whiny. This is definitely where I’m supposed to be though. I couldn’t imagine it any other way.

Michael May 28, 2011 at 2:26 pm

Sitting in a cabin in Pinetop, AZ. One of my favorite places to be. Because this place is my in-laws my road to the cabin is through my wife Molly. We were married 8 years ago this Tuesday. I am definitely supposed to be here, with her and my kids. They are where I am in life.

tammy May 28, 2011 at 3:01 pm

i am a lover of the seashore, sitting in my own little cottage in the landlocked state of oklahoma. the state that had an outbreak of major tornadoes 2 days ago. tho sometimes i envision myself elsewhere, i try to ‘bloom where i’m planted.’ if my house had blown away, as so many did, i would be okay. i have very little “stuff.” maybe i would start over in a sea-town. still at 65, it’s nice to dream.
where i really am is simply happy. life is good.

Rosa May 28, 2011 at 3:21 pm

I’m home, downstairs, supposedly working on a presentation. I’m here because it’s Saturday and I don’t want to be anywhere else right now. It’s my favorite place in the house, because I get a lot of fresh air, even though I’m inside, and there’s a small rattle that sounds like jungle and I’m taking the whole couch for myself, and I love it. :)

T May 28, 2011 at 4:42 pm

I’m sitting in front of my laptop, in my room, thinking and worrying about n things and the only conclusion I’m coming to is that I need to get my sh*t together.

Growing up is scary, especially when you have no other choice.

Harry May 28, 2011 at 5:23 pm

I’m sitting in my room, contemplating on going to the gym, waiting for a friend to text back to see whether I have plans for now. Maybe I should be a little more proactive with what I’m going to do? I’ve really wanted to go to this little coffee shop nearby that I’ve seen several times, today might be a good day to do that.

isthismypurpose? May 28, 2011 at 6:10 pm

It’s 2am and I’m supposed to wake at 4am for my first prayer of the day. Each day I miss this prayer and each day I begin with guilt.

I’m sitting in the dark. My children are asleep yet I cannot relax. I dread the nights and I dread the mornings.

I am in the Mid East.

I am married to a man I do not love. I want a divorce yet he refuses to release me. If and when he does, I stand to lose my children.

I have little to no rights in my country.

I have no education.

I have no future.

I have no joy expect for my children.

I am not now nor have I ever been where I truly want to be.

I want to be free. I want to feel at peace. I want to feel loved and respected. I want to be happy. I want my children to be happy. I want us to have a new life.

Yet none of this is attainable.

My religion isn’t helping me yet it’s suppose to provide me with the answers. How do you worship a God you no longer trust?

My friends and family can’t help me. I can’t even help myself.

My corner of time is suffocating and slowly killing me.

Salmah May 29, 2011 at 9:47 am

I can’t pretend to understand what you are going through but I read this awesome book that refreshed my faith in God: “When you hear hoofbeats, think of a Zebra”. Maybe it will help a little?

I'm free May 28, 2011 at 9:32 pm

It’s Saturday night.
I’m in my home office.
I have been trying for months to declutter my existence – I have accomplished much. I still have more to do.
I’m female and 46 and single and childfree.
Yesterday I sold my business (the closing was yesterday) – a cafe I started 17 years ago. Tomorrow is my last day as owner.
I have no idea what I am doing next with my life. I only knew I had to get out of that in order to move on to the next stage.

I am definitely here by choice.
I have sold my whole identity (independent female small business owner) – wondering now – who I am. Eager to find out.

Sometimes I think I must be insane to have done this with no plan. Other times I am hopeful and filled with possibility and ideas and dreams.

But right now I’m just sitting in my office putzing around on the computer and thinking of the boxes I should pack up tomorrow.

Anon May 29, 2011 at 3:27 am

This is what I wrote and e-mailed the other day. But I failed to answer the question ‘Is this where you are supposed to be?’ And oddly enough perhaps the answer is ‘yes’. You can’t end a 40 year marriage without a financial and emotional mess. Three years of grief, anger, resentment, frustration, fear giving way to ‘a muddle’ seems like a good deal to me, it gives me great hope. I’ve come a long way.

Anon May 29, 2011 at 3:32 am

My life is in a muddle. Every so often, I clear my desk and put things away, but my life stays in a muddle. I thought I knew where I was going before my 40 year marriage dissolved overnight. I can put away the muddle on my desk, but I can’t un-muddle my life so easily. I can’t undo the pain, disappointment, shock, stress and insecurity. I am stuck in an emotional muddle.

Anon

Phoenix May 29, 2011 at 3:53 am

I just have to say your blog is one of my favourites! Thank you for being and remaining so inspiring! Your posts are like a much needed breath of fresh air! Thank you for the opportunity to exhale! So where am I right now? Today finds me on a bank holiday weekend cramming for exams! What got me here? That little devil called procrastination! :D But some how I think I work better under pressure – the adrenaline kick gets my creative juices flowing! lol

Procrastinator May 29, 2011 at 9:33 am

Its a Sunday afternoon, and I am staring at my computer, doing everything else besides work. I don’t like my work, even though it is pretty awesome(ly safe). I stay because I dont know what else to do. I studied for seven years all the while telling myself that I’ll find my calling along the way. Four years after studying and I am still as clueless as I was all those years ago. Am I supposed to be here? I don’t know where else to be, so I guess the answer is yes? I don’t even know what I want so it feels like i am going to be floating along this path for a very long time. I am not unhappy but I am not happy either… ?

William May 29, 2011 at 1:33 pm

I am an American student studying in Sweden. I am in the kitchen of a hostel. I am here due to the government subsidizing my education. I am waiting on clarity. Avoiding responsibility and monotony. Excited for mistakes. (young and naive). I am supposed to be here (abroad), but I do not know nearly enough to decide if I am where I am supposed to be at home.

Katy May 29, 2011 at 3:19 pm

I am currently sitting in the kitchen of a home in Southwest Michigan where I will spend the next 2.5 months. I work in theatre and this is the 6th summer I have spent here. It is one of few places that I feel truely attached to in my life.
I found this place through a suggestion of a friend and continue to return to it because of all the new and old friends I have made and continue to make.

I feel…torn – as to whether I should still be here or not. I gain nothing financially, and that always makes it hard. But some of the best memories of my life have happened in this place and all I want is to add to them.

Michael May 29, 2011 at 6:07 pm

Right now, I’m in my computer room, as usual, getting in touch with my friends online and mindlessly browsing through the Internet, Facebook and whatever sites I usually stick to for the moment, just passing my hours away, before going to bed.

In a broader sense, I’ve started a new job with better perspectives than my last, although it’s still not a permanent job – if such a thing even exists, nowadays. I’m nearly finished with another year of college, hopefully passing my classes with proper grades, so this road towards my career becomes more and more reachable.

I don’t really know what I’m trying to do here, to be honest. Having started my academic life as an artist and now having changed paths into the field of psychology, even though I feel I made the right decisions to the extent of my possibilities, things don’t seem quite just right yet.

The future I glimpse for my career seems hopeful, but the means to reach it are rather lacking. I’ve been feeling rather demotivated since this course is much more theoretical than I feel comfortable with and, as an artist, this is rather unsettling. Still, all hope is not lost. We shall see. Luckily, life isn’t set in stone; we can always take a left turn and change as much as possible.

The one thing that bothers me above everything else is how I’ve been perceiving life in the last few years. When you live life in a sort of mechanized way, everything seems rather objective and simple, however when you set your mind free and start paying more attention, everything changes.

When I stop to enjoy the moment and observe all around me, life seems so magical; things, people, animals, nature, the sky, everything seems to coordinate so perfectly as time goes by. But when I cease that clear-minded, peaceful state and turn back to the chaos of daily life, everything seems so futile. That’s when I start wondering what exactly are we all doing here, so upset, so sad, so angry, so stressed, so hasty, so… decadent, to be honest.

Life was meant to be a beautiful thing – and sometimes, it really is – but we’ve tainted it so much with so many meaningless things that now all we do is survive and recover, rather than live and create. I just have the feeling we were all meant to be doing something much more meaningful and important, but somehow it doesn’t quite feel that way. No, it sure doesn’t, not to me.

Jen May 29, 2011 at 6:28 pm

I am sitting at my laptop in my office. My five year old son is sitting at the desk next to mine, happily taking advantage of the extra computer time a weekend brings. My eighteen month old is asleep in our bed, having recently fallen asleep in my arms. I am feeling much more peaceful about pretty much everything on the planet now that he is asleep.

I am in our house. The house that was ours when my husband and I first married. That we sold to move many states away for graduate school, but sold to a couple with few financial skills who fell literally years behind on payments. So when last fall my husband and I were both fired from our jobs (at the same place) in an extremely dishonest, personal, secretive horrific mess that left us both deeply broken, it was a relief to be fully justified to kick our buyers out and move back here.

Sometimes this house makes me crazy, because it is old, needs work, and is not easy to babyproof. But right now I am able to appreciate it. How familiar it is. The fact that we own it, entire. The yard, the trees, even the trouble-making squirrels.

I do feel that I belong here in this place. I love this city, even though my family is far away. I love this neighborhood, this house, our yard. I am still struggling with finding my place/calling/career/job after the EpicFiringof2010. But at the moment, I’m okay with that struggle.

Jacob Green May 30, 2011 at 12:12 am

My name is Jacob Green, I just turned 20, literally no more than 22 hours and 10 minutes ago. Its funny that i come to Raptitude and find this post on here cause I think this day or year is a very important one. To the question, im in my dads living room; my two blood brothers are asleep in the next room; my dad and his new fiance and in the other; and my giant step-brother is in the other. I look around and see my frankenstien of a road bike, built up from a UC Davis bike church when i went there for a year, my 15th phone, LG p.o.s., and a record player i bought for my dad for christmas. Like many people have said we are where we are from a product of our choices, but sadly we are also a product of many more choices other people have made to influence our lives. I understand that a person can take their own life into their hands and make something of it, but at every point in your life are you able to make that decision? If so why does it seem so hard? If not the why not? Just for a quick laugh for everyone, I have a small anecdote: Cal Poly hosted their annual beginning of dead week NAKED RUN this past friday. My best friend spike took me to his house and we proceeded to ride bicycles to hathaway which is 5 miles from his house wearing nothing but speedos and panchos. We didnt make the event, but i proceeded to streak in a poncho. After the run we tried to make it back to the house i did not. I crashed on my bike 15 times, sustained knee, quad, hip, forearm, and quite a few face cuts. Im here and in the state im in because of that weekend, and im smiling

Tobi May 30, 2011 at 2:37 am

The real one was to long and I thought you might skip reading it. So This is a short short version but the full one is here if you want to read it :) http://treasuretext.blogspot.com/2011/05/to-answer-davids-question.html

I’m a 19 year old girl? Women? Who rates at about a 4 at best sitting in parents walk out basement with a part time job as a cart pusher while my friends all have graduation parties and finish their first year of college. My extreme phobia of moths might force me to quit that crap job so I’ll be an even bigger loser. Still haven’t gotten around to joining in on that procrastination experiment.

Marshall Jones Jr. May 30, 2011 at 3:17 am

I’m at work in Seoul, South Korea. I’ve been here for 30 days now. I keep telling everyone I’m planning to stay two, maybe three, years. But really, I’ve known since the first week that I probably won’t. It’s not that I don’t like it here. It’s that I can’t imagine topping this first year.

So I’ll probably go somewhere else after this. In the meantime, the present moment, I’m meeting new people, visiting new places, and writing new things.

-Marshall Jones Jr.

Hanlie May 30, 2011 at 1:46 pm

I’m at my dining room table…and will be going to bed as soon as my tea is finished. I’m in the middle of a year of major transformation – I reached my own personal rock bottom about six months ago when I suffered a breakdown brought on by an extremely abusive work environment, 15 years of obesity, a bout of depression and severe adrenal exhaustion. I just wanted to die. And yet… in that moment, as I was telling my husband that if this was living, I wanted no more of it, a little voice inside me said, “Stand up. Heal. Change your life.” At that moment I discovered that I already had everything I would ever need to live a meaningful life.

It’s been an interesting six months. I have recovered from the depression and the adrenal exhaustion, but due to the obesity am still faced with serious health problems. I engaged an NLP life coach to help me and immersed myself in the teachings of people like Martha Beck and Dr. Wayne Dyer. I figured many things out – among others that I have to end my marriage and learn to stand on my own two feet. I literally have to learn to take up all the space I need and want. It’s very exciting… and of course a little daunting. Yes, I am happy, because I am in motion…

Nea | Self Improvement Saga May 30, 2011 at 2:05 pm

I am where I’m supposed to be. Sitting here on the sofa in front of my new air conditioning unit. The vertical blinds on the balcony door are open, the sunlight is shining in and I have a perfect view of the trees. I hear my daughter yapping on the phone (she’s home from school because it’s Memorial Day). My new lasagna recipe is cooking in the slow cooker. The cat is sniffing my leg.

I’m a bit anxious about the many things going on in my head at this very moment. “Where do I start” and “What if…” are the primary questions; but I’m surrounded by the answers. Everything I’ve done, mistakes and all, have led me to a moment in time where I am much more than okay. I have so much to be thankful for and I have every reason to believe that whatever I do next will also work out for my Highest good.

kokopelli May 30, 2011 at 2:19 pm

I am in the midwest right now, and despite all the beautiful landscapes it has to offer I cannot appreciate it for what it is. I am staying with an old friend, and I realize now that we have little in common. I am sitting on a fold-out couch, while my friend is watching TV in the other room. We have known each other since 3rd grade.

I attend the most prestigious undergraduate art school in the nation. It has a class of 63 art students and an acceptance rate less than 5%. It is little known, except by insiders of the art world and New Yorkers. Living in the city and attending this program has simultaneously opened doors and doubts in my life. I do not know if art is what I want to do for a living; all I know is that when i’m depressed, creating work makes me feel even more alone…but the process is satisfying in a way nothing else can be. I do not know if my art will ever be good, or whether that matters.

I graduated at the top of my high school class, and I believe I am an intelligent being. I feel that being a real and sentient person makes life more difficult–and your website is something I keep coming back to, even though I scorn self-help books and advice from a person I don’t even know. Your writings don’t seem like that.

I feel as if I should be enjoying my vacation–but I am mostly overwhelmed by how confused I am about everything. I have been reading about different types of depression, and I feel as if I could easily be diagnosed with bi-polar disorder. I do not know if I should take medicine for it, because I am often overwhelmed to the point where I can do nothing but cry for little direct reason. I cannot sleep when I am angry or melancholy, but I don’t want to take medicine or see a doctor because in some ways I believe that depression can guide my art-making, and that these feelings are naturally-occurring and a part of my personality. Depression medicine is how our society diagnoses and takes care of these naturally-occurring feelings, and it is our way of allowing ourselves to lead functioning lives. But I think part of being an artist is being able to feel and understand emotion–and not necessarily lead the most efficient or high-functioning lifestyle. Depression medicine would mellow out my feelings, but I would not feel anything with as much intensity as I do now. I don’t know if I want that.

I met my boyfriend at school, and this is the first time we have been doing long-distance. Our relationship began based on the conversations we have while we’re on drugs–mostly weed and LSD, but we still get along fine when we’re sober and I care about him a lot. We both have trouble communicating, and I am going to a music festival with him in a week–he has a musician’s soul and has taught me how powerful music is in how it makes you feel. He has a lot of issues I cannot help him with, and sometimes it makes me feel like we are both headed towards an awful future.

Telling my mother that I am bi-polar would destroy her. My family is falling apart, and I have not seen my brother since last Christmas. My mother cries a lot and is always screaming at me, and she tells me not to have children because they will just take and take from me, and they will never give anything back.

There have been brief moments where I really appreciate where I am right now. At night, I run when the sun comes down and the air is cool and dry. The night smells like honeysuckle–one of my favorite scents, and the sky above me is endless and full of stars. I wish I could feel as happy as I do when I am running at night all the time.

This is where I am, how I am, and I don’t know where I’m going.

hope May 30, 2011 at 5:25 pm

I’ve been keeping up with this article since i’ve posted on it. Kokopelli’s comment brought me to tears. I understand the battle between getting help or staying at ease. Depression has gave me the mindset that not everyone is blessed, or more so cursed with. All of these drugs, to become something i’m not. Personally, i’ll pass. If you’re reading this, continue your art. Cling onto that one passion and never let it slip between the cracks. You’re beautiful, and the world needs that. Stay true and love yourself.

Sarah May 30, 2011 at 11:12 pm

I’m at work. Its teeming with rain and there’s renovations going on in my office so I’ve got headphones on (listening to Adele). In terms of where I’m AT, I’m anticipating the arrival of someone who used to be very close to me, and the anticipation revolves around whether they will be again. I hope so and hope not in equal measure.

Spalding May 31, 2011 at 1:27 am

It’s 2am in My Dad’s tiny condo (free rent) and today was my first day back to a job I’ve had for a while now. A tedious and meaningless job I began with idealism and huge misconceptions and kept at simply to pay for school. Currently I’m surrounded by bank statements as I try to prepare my taxes, twice, in two languages for two countries. I just got back a week ago from a year of teaching in France.

My mind is still over there, in the woods with the woman I love. An American I met while teaching, we hung out a lot throughout the year, then even lived together for a month in a tiny tent as we biked all around Europe. But alack, she’s married, to another man, and now lives thousands of kilometers away. Despite our once-in-a-lifetime adventure together, I was too afraid to tell her I loved her.

I blinked and it’s all gone.

It seems like there’s nothing left between us even just a couple weeks on, and it kills me because I still love her.

Evan May 31, 2011 at 8:15 am

I’m in my medical school’s student lounge 2 weeks after we’ve broken for summer break after 1st year finished. I’m here because we are required to sign up for a ride-along with a program called Meals on Wheels that empowers able-bodied senior citizens to deliver meals to the homes of more handicapped seniors. I’m about to head out to meet my mentor in about 5 mins.

I guess what got me here is the need for challenge. I’m in medical school because I get great satisfaction from completing things. I also feel I learn best when I participate in things way outside my comfort zone, start to feel totally awkward, and come out with a change of perspective. Going on this Ride-along thing will not be TOTALLY outside my comfort zone but I don’t spend much time with seniors and I’m sure there’ll be a lot to learn.

LootBag May 31, 2011 at 9:03 am

I am here in my basement office, contemplating the tasks for the day (and yes, procrastinating a little). I am here because one day about 7 years ago I realized that I could not handle my cushy-but-boring job anymore, and needed to challenge myself on all sorts of different levels.

It’s been tough–agonizingly tough–but I am much happier to be alive now than perhaps I have ever been. I have learned things I needed to learn about fear and anxiety, and as a result of that, I have learned far better how to be in the moment I am in, not worrying too much about the future (which does not exist), nor mourning too much the past (which cannot be changed).

I am in a lot of debt, and the income from the company is still not quite where it needs to be to make ends meet. Also, my marriage of 15 years is coming to an end. I’m not perfect, and I don’t have my shit together, and I’m still very much a work in progress, but I have discovered a sense of peace and calm that carries me through many challenges that in the past would have stressed me out terribly.

It is good to be alive, and it’s good to be me. I recently noted my 41st birthday, and it really pleases me to be thankful for the wonderful life I have had thus far, and appreciate that I still have so much life left to enjoy. But none of that really matters. All that matters is this moment, and that’s what I celebrate the most.

Beebosmom May 31, 2011 at 9:53 am

I am at my desk at work. I like my job. It pays okay, has good benefits and retirement plan. This is important to me because I have a young child. I am currently married and wish that I wasn’t. I had a plan to leave this summer but will probably postpone it for 6 months. I want to make sure I have enough money, pay of cc debt. I feel ready for that change but also scared.

escapingthecountry May 31, 2011 at 2:24 pm

I’m chillin’ on my bed in a tiger-print onesie; instead of tiding up my floor-drobe or beginning revising for my final exam I’ve decided to try on my fancy dress for a party more than a week away.

This is my final year at university, and I’m excited to finally be able to make something of myself in my life, to move away from my small country town, to see the world and create a legacy.

Hannah May 31, 2011 at 6:49 pm

im in a friends apartment, living on a couch, waiting for my lease to start tomorrow.

Fabian | The Friendly Anarchist June 1, 2011 at 5:07 am

I’m at a dear friend’s apartment in Berlin. Got here two days ago. I always wanted to explore this city, had planned to visit him since last year, and now it worked out. How I feel about that? Pretty great. Blessed, almost. It all came together so easily, so effortlessly, even though it took some time.

“Do you feel like you are where you’re supposed to be?” – At this very moment, yes. But it’s also just a moment in time, and the journey will continue. I enjoy being here as much as the prospect of moving on again, one day.

Jillian June 1, 2011 at 7:37 am

This is my bedroom in my parents’ basement where I am hiding from the world. It’s less hot and humid in here than it is outside, so I am hiding from the world in the physical sense, and it’s less scary to live here than it is work hard enough to strike out on my own. Or am I wrong? Is it scarier to stay in my comfort zone, never living the life I’ve imagined for myself?

Jeff June 1, 2011 at 9:33 am

I’m at work, reading a blog. But if I’m going to go ahead and not work, I should work on my school work instead.

Natasha June 1, 2011 at 2:40 pm

I think it’s funny that you asked these exact questions because it seems like I’ve been thinking about this sort of thing a lot lately. I don’t really pay attention to these little emails I receive, but this one I want to respond to. I really feel like I am exactly where I’m supposed to be in life. I just finished my first year of college, and my life has almost turned upside down. I changed a whole lot, and I view things a lot differently. I’m back home for the summer, totally motivated and inspired to do something big and exciting with my life, thanks to a great year and all of the transformations it’s made in me. I’m alone at the time, taking sort of a break from my family and friends and the busy life I’ve had this entire past year. But I’m dearly thankful to everyone and everything in my life, whether those things, people, or situations made me happy or totally devastated me. Because all of those things have made me who I am today, and surprisingly I’m very satisfied with this state. I usually rarely feel this way, so now I know that I’m doing something right and it feels really damn good!

Simon June 1, 2011 at 3:37 pm

I’m at home, on the floor, browsing the net after I had my dinner. Fearing boredom and looking for validation hits I’m using the computer again.

Before I would probably be doing the same, but it wouldn’t be the 7th hour of using the computer, but probably the first. I find that if I’m out of the house I use the computer less, but I don’t always want to leave the house.

I don’t quite feel where I’m supposed to be, but in the absence of anything else, this is what it is.

Kim T. June 1, 2011 at 8:51 pm

I am using my laptop, sitting in my big soft armchair with my legs on the ottoman. I have a cup of water beside me and am leaning on a pillow. I just took 2 ibuprofen. I have a stomach ache and a headache and that’s why I’m on my laptop – to distract myself until I feel better. My older son, a 4th grader, will take his social studies state test tomorrow – 400 years of Virginia history, and he’s stressing, because he wants a perfect score on it. He’s supposed to be in bed but he’s come downstairs twice cramming some last minute information. I just tried to talk him down from being a perfectionist about this test, and I think I finally convinced him to go to bed and stay in bed. My husband is out of town on a business trip for a few more days and it’s really quiet without him here. Not that he’s a loud person by any means, but his presence has a quality that when absent, makes our home feel empty. My younger son is probably asleep already, with his fuzzy freshly-buzz-cut blond head on his Perky the Penguin pillow pet. As I write this, I can hear my kitchen clock ticking loudly.

I am in this moment because of a whole series of choices I made over a long period of time that led me here, to my home, and this is exactly where I’m supposed to be. Even with the stomach ache and the headache – because I ate too much at dinner and I was too vain to wear my glasses at work today. :)

Michelle June 1, 2011 at 9:34 pm

I am in a room… my room I guess. I’m living in my parents’ house. I just graduated from school, and I’m searching for work. I feel like I’m here out of happenstance, but I know that’s a lie. I’ve had the power and ability to take control of the direction my life goes, but I’ve been too timid and afraid to do so. So now here I am.

Am I waiting? I always feel like I’m waiting. That’s how I end up at my parents’ place post-graduation; I wait for life to happen, and it doesn’t. But I guess I am avoiding something. I’m avoiding the truth that I have the power to change things, if I really strive to. I’m afraid of rejection and failure. It’s easier to simply let life happen. Likewise, I’m too timid to really be excited for anything. I suppose I’m excited for the anbiguous future, because it lets me hope for something greater.

I feel like I’m where I’m supposed to be, but at the same time, like I’m supposed to fight like hell to get out and be something more.

Thanks for the questions, they got me thinking.

mike seroy June 1, 2011 at 10:03 pm

I am in my bedroom, laying in my bed because I am upset. The reason I am upset is because I have an MCAT exam in two months, for which I spent about 8 hours making a schedule that I wanted to follow. The schedule planned out every page number and problem I would do for 80 days. However, I have barely done two days of work to account for the last 20 days of my schedule. I don’t know why this is. I wake up every morning, head to the library to do a little work and then I feel like doing no more for various reasons, such as “I feel hot and the AC at my place is cooler.” I tell myself I will come home, play some video games, then try (again) to start catching up on my schedule later that day. However, I never do. I keep doing other things that waste time. Watch TV, play chess, hang out with my brother. The worst part is I no longer will associate with my friends because I tell myself I don’t have time to “chill” since I need to catch up on my MCAT schedule. But I never do. I stopped replying to their texts and phone calls because I don’t want to deal with anything or anyone until I catch up, but I just can’t seem to concentrate and do so… I came to your blog looking for any new advice because I think us two are pretty similar. Growing up I did very well in high school. My parents always expected As. I did pretty good my first year of college too; however, second semester second year, my procrastination killed me (I didn’t start studying for my ochem final until the night before it), and my grades suffered. I am just trying to get my life back together because it kills me how I don’t have enough discipline to control my time management. Tomorrow is a new day though and I will try again.

Kelly. June 2, 2011 at 1:01 am

Although I feel bad today, I am where I meant to be, I know that deep down to my core. A week ago I forgot take my meds, and as a result today I am feeling the consequences (depression, anxiety and paranoia). Where I am is sitting on the lounge suite in my parents house, in a small town, rural New Zealand. After an inappropriate relationship with a senior co-worker turned sour (his wife found out) I ran away from the city, back to my parents in the guise of ‘returning to study’. At times I feel like my life has been one fuck up after another, but then I think about it and I realise that I am working my ideal job in the centre of my industry (having studied it for two years and come top of my classes) and learning and enjoying it more than I could ever imagine.

HT_SA June 2, 2011 at 2:00 am

Great question! I am sitting in a diner just outside Cape Town, South Africa, having breakfast on my way to a meeting. It is 9am and the diner is filling up slowly. Looking around I see all sorts of people, some reading the morning paper, some (like me) working on their laptops. Two big tour buses just stopped outside and I am wondering what their final destination will be.

Am I where I want to be right now? Yes, I am – after spending 8 years abroad it is good to be back in South Africa. However, another big move may be on the cards – another international move. I am not sure if this is what I am supposed to do – time will tell. In the interim I am waiting to hear if I secured a lucrative contract for my new business (only in its 6th month!) which will relieve a lot of the financial pressure I am currently feeling. I am also turning 40 this year – so I am constantly in a reflective mood recently – feeling that I am now at the halfway point of my life (hopefully!) and looking back at the ups and downs of the last 4 decades.

Izzie Driftwood June 2, 2011 at 9:45 am

I’m in my room at my parent’s house, on the same bed I slept in more than 20 years ago. In two weeks we’ll move, and again to a new city/state in six more months. I’m ending a three year period of recovery and rebuilding after I threw my life (grad school, impending career, etc.) under the bus. Am I content where I am? No, but I’m going in a better direction and this bed is a lot softer than the bridge I slept under, the humble pie worth the stability, support, and love of my family and new friends. My heart healed, I’m ready for the next great adventure and continuing creation of my place in mock race.

Chelsey June 5, 2011 at 1:49 pm

I am currently sitting in the common room of a hostel in Seattle. I have been here for ten days and I can finally move into my sublease today for the rest of the summer. Ten days before, I was driving all the way across the country, from Ann Arbor, Michigan to Seattle, for an unpaid position at a non-profit. I came here for a new adventure (I graduated from college a year ago and needed a change of scenery) and to find opportunities in the job market that are currently not available in the horrid Michigan economy.

Amanda June 5, 2011 at 2:14 pm

My little corner of time is on a couple week delay from this post. I’m delayed in replying because I’ve been behind in reading the blog posts I get sent to my email. Dealing with the loss of a loved one over the past couple months has been challenging and has affected my motivation and productivity, especially outside of work, causing the build up in my inbox. It’s Sunday today and I’ve spent the morning sitting quietly with my computer on the couch, catching up with friends on Skype, with my online reading and enjoying the silence. This two bedroom apartment is not the place I need to be over the long term, I realized that about a week ago. But tidying up my mental clutter in this comfortable spot on the couch, under a blanket and wrapped in silence, is exactly where I need to be during this brief instant. Thank-you for helping me realize it :)

shoshanna June 5, 2011 at 7:15 pm

I just found this blog yesterday or else I would have commented sooner. But where am I at this moment? I’m in my kitchen currently waiting for my dinner to cook and figured I’d come read more of this blog because I found it so interesting yesterday when I stumbled on it.

Am I where I’m supposed to be? Yes, I am. It’s not where I WANT to be though, but since this is where I am, then I guess I am supposed to be here right? There’s always a reason for everything, even if sometimes that reason is not clear to us.

another T June 5, 2011 at 8:42 pm

In the sitting room of our 100 year old house, fish tanks bubbling to the right, husband to the left through the arch watching TV while I unwind here at the computer. The kids are in bed. The house I grew up in is only 5 minutes away.

I’m 43 and a stay home mom of 3 (3, 5 & 8 years old). I think I’m exactly where I need to be at the moment, but I’m restless. So many lists of things I want to do, with the house, with the kids, with the husband. No way to do it all.

I try not to think of the things I miss, just do what I can and realize I have a great life, even if I never make it to Machu Picchu.

Changkuoth Gatchay June 8, 2011 at 2:10 am

I’m in the kitchen, sitting at the dining table. I’ve been living in this apartment for about a year. I never expected to move out here. But, my family was forced to leave our former apartment because of financial trouble. If you would’ve told me two years ago that I was going to live in Slayton,MN, I would’ve told you that you’re crazy. That’s precisely because I use to live in New York state prior to moving here.

Jeff Blunck June 8, 2011 at 3:57 am

I can say with absolute confidence that I am exactly where I am supposed to be at this moment. I have suffered my whole life from what I have heard called a value system disorder ( may have even been on this site that I first heard that expression:) I have suffered from the disease of addiction since I was 10, I am 54 now. The disease is progressive and only goes one way which is down. When death seemed like the only viable solution, when I had arrived at colossal human failure status I received “the” Gift. The gift of desperation. What this gift afforded me was a solution to the value system disorder that created it :) … I was presented with the idea that deep down within every man woman and child is the fundamental idea of God ( I dont even know if that is the name God prefers) that ultimately it was only in that place, deep inside of me, that God could be found. I was presented with a very simple set of Spiritual principles from others in whom this problem had been solved. With the willingness I found as a result of this desperation. I followed the direction for the practical application of these simple rules in aspect of my seemingly hopeless life. I have heard it called “a new pair of glasses” …. So I committed to this discipline as best I could on a daily basis and the miracle of enlightenment took place. What I see with these “new glasses” is that Fear and only Fear is at the core of all my suffering… “dis-ease” if you will. I have been driven by Fear all my life. Growing up I was indoctrinated into a value system not of me. Every and I mean EVERY belief, opinion, attitude, prejudice,etc that I held dear was either directly or indirectly influenced by fear… I was driven by fear. Self centered Fear is the primary activator of ALL of my defects of character and thus all of my decisions and beliefs about what would define my life as a “success” . Acceptance and approval, hopes and dreams all generated mass quantities of fear. Fear’s most effective and devastating defect is denial. Denial is a master of disguise. Sense of entitlement can ruin a day a week or my whole life if I leave it unresolved. Fear of injustice, that someone might actually get away with doing me wrong or even someone else ( I am “codependent” that way:) I was told that if I were willing to inventory my life on paper looking only for my wrongs and how my fear created defects influenced my decisions and brought about misfortune I truly felt I didn’t deserve. To tell my life story to another human being all of it leaving nothing out . To list all person I had harm and to make such matters right as best I could, that I would enter into a relationship with my creator. I was told that if I asked my Creator to remove my fear and direct my attention towards what He would have me become that I would commence to outgrow fear. This has proved to be true for me. It is the “Great Fact” never believed it possible . As I have stayed true to the discipline I have been set free.
I know in my heart that I am on my own perfect journey in this life and that it is ridiculous to judge my life by comparing it to others. That hopes and dreams are not entitlements nor do they define me. I have been set free from the prison of public opinion. The world and it’s people no longer have the power to “kill” my Soul unless I choose to give it to them. Life is very much like a math equation. First commandment in math is ” Simplify then solve” and then there is a very strict order of operations ( I am assuming we all know those) if I do not follow this strict and immutable order I will not get the “right answer”. When I ask the God of my understanding to remove my fears and in return offer to do something for someone else with no thought of a return or benefit then I recieve the gift of freedom from the bondage of self.

I can be happy and free as long as I try to honor my commitment to this simple discipline (trust me I will never maintain anything like perfect adherence to these principle! There would be no need for Grace if perfection were possible ) So long as I remain willing to grow along Spiritual lines and see to it that there are no conditions on my happiness I will remain free and able to live usefully and walk humbly under the Grace of my Creator.

Thankyou God for the gift of desperation and my willingness to embrace it. I know that if I would have lived up to my worldly potential I would have never been willing to try to “meet” and know you

Jeff

FakeName June 12, 2011 at 2:41 pm

I am here in a cafe in Barnes & Nobels, came to chat online with my fiancé-whom I haven’t seen for 7 months-, and pretend that everything is going fine in our relationship…. It is not good, isn’t it? I don’t live the best situation now but I cannot find the better situation to replace with the current one… I am here in this café’, enjoying (?!) my loneliness. I am here in https://www.raptitude.com to learn how to get the best of the thing we are calling it “Life”…

lynn June 15, 2011 at 8:37 pm

Am late to the party … am in my apartment on my comfy couch with my amazing dog sleeping beside me with a laptop on my lap. because i’m where i am, i have to be where i was meant to me, because simply am here. Am present to the moment and the question at hand, and find that if am not where am supposed to be, fear is the impediment to that path. The dreams and daydreams of youth are long gone, yet fuel my intention despite the “knowing” that 41 years of inhabiting the earth has generated. Or so I think. Feeling free is nice. That’s always been my save haven. Being alone is lonely, yet at the same time, freeing. At a cross roads in my life, at least that’s how I’m hoping it will generate. If not, it is more of the same, and that’s not bad but not free. I am thinking of a computer program right now one that is for people to use and navigate their lives… by entering the past and hopes for the future, and having an algorithm generate “what if” choices based on the information provided. I think that would be interesting and stimulate individual paths that help folks to overcome fear and feel safer in their future options and choices.

Meghan June 29, 2011 at 11:06 am

I’m a university student, off for summer vacation, and terrified that I still don’t know what I want to do with my life. I volunteer at a children’s hospital, an opportunity that came out of the only spontaneous action I’ve taken in a long time. Currently, I’m sitting on a bed in a room of my grandparents’ house on the beach of the Sea of Cortes in Mexico, taking a 10-day break to de-stress myself, although since I can’t remember a moment in my life when I wasn’t stressed about something, I have no idea what that feeling I’m looking for is. I’m hoping I’ll recognize it when I find it.

David July 3, 2011 at 3:01 pm

Not that I’m that much older, but I wish I could tell every college student that they shouldn’t know what they want to do with their lives by the time they reach college. There is so much to learn about yourself before you can make a genuinely informed decision about the right way to spend your life. A great book is “What Should I Do With My Life” by Po Bronson.

nia July 1, 2011 at 2:30 am

For whatever reason, I ended up in front of this screen reading your questions and it felt like the questions were meant for me, in this moment. Life is different and I would not have been able to ask myself these important questions without stumbling onto this site. I just wanted to say thanks. Sometimes we don’t have it in ourselves to look in the mirror and ask such crucial questions of ourselves but I’m glad you did. Very personally motivational.

Zackary October 4, 2011 at 2:50 am

Where am I? Who is to say, none of us *really* know where we are. I mean, look above you, there us probably a roof over your head. You are also most likely (and for your own safety, hopefully) sitting down, but that doesn’t translate to where you are. We are inside of what we believe is the universe, proven if it exists or not, we are inside of it. If I were anyways to give you a legitimate answer on where I am right now, I would have to answer with – I am present. How did I get here? I’m not quite sure of that either, but I think it has to do with the fact that ultimately I will not be able to fully understand any of my actions not to mention the effects of those actions. Am I waiting on something? Yes, I am waiting for my next self-realization, sometimes I forget that I am, or in other words exist and that other people exist too. Avoiding something? I am avoiding avoidance. Let everything come and go. I don’t revolve around the thinking of ignorance is bliss, because it certainly is not. Excited for something? Yes I am, I am excited to see my stunning girlfriend today at school, our love for each other exceeds our need for each other, which I think is beautiful.
I am in the middle of what I like to call “Chapter 17”. I am quite content with life and have been involving myself in more and more things that I love and cherish. It’s a great chapter.
I feel that everyone is where they are supposed to be whether or not they or okay with it. Because no matter what, change is always inevitable, and perseverance is always constant.
I truly appreciated this article, it definitely supports my reasoning for “late night philosophy”.
And remember, if you aren’t thinking, you aren’t living.

Roger February 11, 2013 at 12:25 am

I’m here trying to flee for pain and shame. Shame because I was dead inside for years and desperately trying to look for happiness at places where it can’t be found and blamed the one person I loved the most in my life. Pain because I hurted her when it was the last thing on earth I wanted to do. And the crushing fact she’s gone for good made me leave my life, made me live again. How bittersweet that tastes can’t be described.

I lost her and as I type this message, my feet are being cooled by drinkable water gently flowing down in a river and the sun is warming my bare skin of my chest and legs. I feel happiness. Mind is at ease and I am learning. My heart is blossoming again.

I’ve learned happiness can’t be found. And I have realised the one person I should love the most in this world should be me, before I can truly love someone else.

Thank you, I hope life brings what you seek. You deserve it.

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