What People Want in Life: Part one

Tough isn’t it? The transition from young adult to ‘grown-up’ so tough in-fact the whole process can take a life-time. But, what do people really want in life? Is there just one thing, or being that everyone is unique, does that mean that life is a spectacular quest to find ‘your own personal greatness’? Are there a select few people who are really happy to do what others find mundane, or are they setting the bar too low? I hope to live a life worth living, but does that mean following in my idols footsteps or can i really be the one to set the rules?

Lets look at some facts of life.

First, there is a battle. Between two parts of you, or more accurately two different ways of thinking, everyone has these two fundamental processes, the conscience mind and the unconscious.

Credit evolution for the former brain functions, conscious thought. Generally known for rationality, consequence and Intelligence. It allows us to see long-term benefits or consequences of our actions, it helps us to weigh up all the different options and make informed decisions. We can consciously choose the path we want to walk before walking it and know (in theory) where it leads.

A perfect example of a life-influnencing conscious decision is choosing a career. We are all hell-bent on defining ourselves by ‘what-we-do’. A firefighter has trained for years to tackle blazes and help those in need. A CEO of a multi-million dollar company has educated herself for an entire lifetime to become honed at producing the right results for whatever company she works in. Somewhere along the line a decision was made to do, rather than fantasize.

Unconscious behaviour is entirely different. The unconscious mind works non-stop, it is influenced by everything. The way your parents behaved in the first year of your life, The bus you ride everyday, the clothes you’re wearing and the town you live in. The Unconscious mind is processing ten time the amount of information then the conscious. It is highly thought of as the emotional, instinctive and passionate side of you. It is largely influencing the urges you get. The way you feel, body language and the way you communicate.

An example of an life-altering unconscious decision we all make is found in the people we surround ourselves with. Someone whose close circle of friends who are intellectual and ‘book smart’ will make different decisions to that of someone who surrounds themselves with people with life-experience and ‘street-smarts’. It is so effective in fact that by changing the people who are around you can change your own perspective of morals, goals and success.

The crossover between these two levels of our minds is seamless. We constantly take in models of behaviour/environment/government/morality and apply them to our daily lives. We spend the first part of our lives constructing webs and maps in our brains that for the rest of our live we try to fit into the world we live in.

This is unbiased between classes, race or religion (or lack of) That is why you can find perfectly happy people who have no money and perfectly happy people owning three yachts. It’s a case of context.

Unfortunately individuals are bias. heavily bias towards what they perceive to be important, the age-old struggle between Impulsive and Cautious. Successful in careers and successful as a family. The ever-changing shift in what society deems a success or failure. Peers and family. Work and play. Happy or unhappy.

Recent studies of ‘the greatest jobs in the world’ come up with a huge variation. Some class greatness as being the luxury island caretaker, some class it as a business playboy. It’s impossible for an individual to simply look at what works for Joe Bloggs and apply it to his own life anymore. The sheer freedom of information now-a-days is too vast for anyone to know that one path is better than the other. It’s not, however a hindrance to the feelings we observe when we find something that tickles our fancy.

Although we can’t always explain why we like rock music to rap or office work to gardening we tend to gravitate to certain things in life more than others. Though it is fair to say that these things can and do change all the time.

I would like to give an example of a man I met recently. He worked as a computer programmer, at twenty-seven years old he fancied a change. Something influenced him in a way that was never there before. He went from computer software engineer to helicopter pilot in two years. He now flies into deep jungle terrain with geologists in search of gold pockets, he told me of the freedom of his job, not being restricted like some pilots to use only instruments but to use intuition and his own knowledge to navigate terrain, safely extract people to remote locations and set camps where they deemed good locations.

In two years he changed the entire course of his life.

In my blog i talk of similar experiences, times that i was able to change the way my life panned out from there-on-out. I am quite infatuated with the idea that if something isn’t quite right in your life, then it can be altered.

I’m not saying that one day I will be a helicopter pilot, but then again, why not?

That ‘why not’ attitude brings me to where i am now. The people who knew me four or five years ago would not have put me as a person who would travel the world – they might have put me as the type of person who would travel England – if the pay was good enough. Then there’s my recent past, i worked with some amazingly influential people at a school near Oxford, but even i wouldn’t have thought one day i would be sat in India contemplating life’s meaning. It’s rewards and its pit-falls…

I find myself, like so many others at a cross-road. I am torn between not knowing what I want and knowing I want something spectacular. torn between the safe route and the unsafe one. The computer engineer and the helicopter pilot. It’s daunting to say the least! To think that a decision I make today can affect the rest of my life. All i have to go on is my own personal brand of thinking. That special blend of both parts of my mind urging me in different directions…

I hope one day to find something I have a passion for.

I hope i will be able to put a conscious effort into achieving it.

I hope the balance of safe and impulse leads me to happiness.