At some point in life, I’m certain everyone has felt like they don’t belong. Whether that’s in their family, friendships, job, or just life in general. Part of our identity has been lost and there is a missing piece to the puzzle. There is a feeling of discontent deep-rooted within us because we feel as though we are supposed to be doing or having something else. The problem is when we feel like we don’t belong, it only clouds our mind and removes us further from the life we are living. We become so focused on the detachment we are feeling that it blocks us from seeing what is available to us at any moment.
Feeling like we belong makes life feel meaningful and full of purpose. We know what we should be doing and where we want to go. Everything is falling into place just as it’s meant to. So what happens when that isn’t the case? When you wake up each day feeling disconnected and out of touch with the world? How do you know where you belong and when you have found it? All are relevant questions. Some might go through their life pretending they feel a sense of belongingness and for others, it might be something they never discover. Nevertheless, it is something everyone strives for but when we don’t have it can be hard to know where to begin.
1. Get to the source
Looking for belonging in a place, thing or even a person will lead you to search for a lifetime. The reality is, it’s only something that can be found in yourself. By acknowledging the things that create the uneasy feeling inside you can work towards underpinning the root cause. The fact that you are no longer resisting your discomfort will make you more likely to find answers.
For example, it might be that you feel you don’t belong in your job. What are some transferable skills and interests you have that could be better utilised elsewhere? Whatever it is that is causing you displeasure could take time to figure out. But through the process, you will grasp a better understanding of yourself. Therefore, providing more clarity of what you want for your future.
2. Work towards your dreams
A lack of ambition will limit the range of opportunities and experiences you are likely to encounter. Having dreams and visions of what you want your life to look like is a crucial step when seeking a more fulfilling life. Even if you don’t know how to get there, knowing what you want is extremely powerful. Reflecting on this often you will eventually realise what you need to do to get there and the necessary steps to put in place. Striving to get what you really want from life will help you achieve a sense of belonging in the world.
3. Be yourself
If you don’t let the world see who you really are how can you find where you belong. I have struggled a lot in the past with my identity and who I am as a person. With people-pleasing and a quiet need to be liked by everyone. Now I realise how exhausting that was. I was never able to relax and so my personality was never able to shine through. Now that I am comfortable with setting boundaries and the fact that not everyone will like me I know any connections in the future will be more genuine.
4. Have trust in timing
A lot of how our lives turn out is just from being in the right place at the right time. If you haven’t found your people yet or working your dream job don’t lose hope. It can tough and lonely at times but there will be so many opportunities in the future that will open up your world in more ways than you can imagine. Sometimes we have to be patient to get what we want and trust the process. Besides having the time now to work on yourself and figure out what you want will be invaluable in the future.
5. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there
If you are living the same life day in day out there is little room to challenge yourself and welcome new experiences. Putting yourself out there and stepping outside of your comfort zone will make way for substantial change to occur in your life. Being open and saying yes to things that scare you will help you to thrive. Alongside this, simply being more present and receptive to the world around you can work wonders. Often an opportunity can be staring us right in the face but by being disconnected we are unable to see it for ourselves.
If you feel as though you don’t belong right now that’s okay. A lack of belonging can be a good thing. It encourages self-discovery and will drive you to find what it is you want from life. And, ultimately there will come a time where everything will fall into place.
If you are interested in further reading on this topic, there is a great article on Thought Catalogue you should check out which I found inspiring.
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