empathy

Don’t wait to reinvent yourself

Painting by Daniel Kannenberg represented by Anna Jill Lüpertz Gallery

Painting by Daniel Kannenberg represented by Anna Jill Lüpertz Gallery

I don’t think you should look to reinvent yourself every decade. Not at all. I think you should try to at least reinvent yourself once a year, if not more often.

Don’t do it because the market is changing, because jobs are limited, or because you’re scared that you will fall behind everyone else. While there is some truth to the fact that the world’s economic challenges require reinvention, it’s not even about that.

If you only seek to reinvent yourself for a better job, more money, or something as such, you’ll have a harder time doing it and there is a chance you’ll dislike the new version of yourself.

However, you should do it for yourself. Who does not want to become a better version of themselves? I know I do. As much as you are happy with who you are right now, and I am by no means saying you shouldn’t like yourself, there is always so much room for improvement and routine maintenance.

Isn’t that wonderful? Knowing that you can become a better version of yourself, that there is always something you can get better at. You could become better at dancing salsa, playing the piano, or communicating your feelings. Or you can improve in something you’re already experienced in. Regardless, there is just so much to do and so much room to become a better lover, friend, artist, doctor, person.

Is improvement of something already existent within yourself a form of reinventing oneself? I believe so because becoming better at anything means changing a habit or a mindset.

Becoming better at yoga involves you sleeping 20 minutes less to practice in the morning. It might not seem like a big thing, but just look at how you change in time and you’ll find out that you are someone else.

That’s where the magic is. You can reinvent yourself by creating a small daily routine.

If you start a journal today and keep writing every day, you will eventually find that you are a different person. You’ll make better decisions, find more reasons to be grateful, and have a clearer thinking process.

Or it could come once a month. On the 1st, you decide to do at least two things that scare you and two random acts of kindness within those thirty-some days. The nature of the change spans the whole month even though the acts themselves really happen on certain days.

I have done both in the past year and I feel like I have never grown so fast and well. The chances and the timing are different from person to person. But, when your chance to reinvent yourself comes, you’ll recognize it. Take it.

Reinventing yourself means continual growth. It’s not always only about dying your hair a different color or making a massive career change. It also means challenging your habits, especially if they are negative, and breaking out of your comfort zone, whatever your comfort zone details.

Of course, there is always the problem of motivation

I have written about motivation before and I come back with the same idea. Motivation comes from within and you can create and nurture it. Setting goals attracts motivation, and having motivation leads to creating new, bigger, bolder goals.

Find the desire to reinvent yourself from within. It could be because of a hunger to become better, to feel like you are actually living and not just existing, or to push the limits of your body or mind. Or it could be because you feel stuck, or you simply feel like you are not comfortable in your skin or in your mind and I have been there too and, once again, when the chance comes, you will know.

Perhaps looking back at who you were a few years ago will help you understand better why you should reinvent yourself and where to find the motivation to do it.

I think of myself a few years ago and I cannot believe some stuff that I did and the utter stupidity of some of my actions. I am glad that I’m embarrassed because it means I evolved.

Look at your past self, the one from ten years ago, and ask yourself if you are happier now, if you feel better about yourself, if your current life gives you more satisfaction. If the answers are in the negative, find out what went wrong.

Life is short. We are supposed to use it to learn how to live better, love better, how to understand ourselves better.

You don’t want your 100th kiss to be just as bad and awkward as your first, would you? Or even if it wasn’t bad or awkward you’d still want to do it better with time.

I am sure you know the famous line “you make me want to be a better man.” Find what makes you want to be a better person and let it do so. It could be a movie, a book, or a person. Again, it could be almost anything depending on what kind of person you are. I think it’s wonderful when we feel the urge to become better. We just need to follow it, not once in a decade, not once in a year, but every time it appears and it feels genuine.


William Alec is a full-time writer, dreamer and art lover. He took to writing at age 14 and his latest novel is called A hospital for souls.