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  #11  
Old 05-31-2014
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Re: Rediscovering one's "Self"

Geez you guys make it seem like I'm about to cut my wrist. I have a group of maybe 12-15 friends that live 20 mins away, and I just mean when I graduated high school, I knew myself. When I graduated college, I knew myself. Since moving away to a different state and starting my new job in the past year some things have changed.
I used to know exactly what I wanted to do when free time came about. Now I seem to be indecisive not even sure what song I want to listen to at times. I'll go for a kayak ride and an hour into it I'll feel like doing something different, where I used to just be enthralled to be out on the water.
The fishing is not as good as where I moved from so I lost that as well.
I'm willing to try new things, so I'm just trying to get some new activities besides working on my boat. Like maybe learning to play a harmonica


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  #12  
Old 05-31-2014
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Re: Rediscovering one's "Self"

Quote:
Originally Posted by PBzeer View Post
If you weren't living aboard when you lost your "self", how do you expect to find it on a boat? The only mystery to life is why so many people want to make it so mysterious.

I double majored in Biology and Psychology. Life is mysterious and complex.
People are simple. (Just kidding)


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  #13  
Old 05-31-2014
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Re: Rediscovering one's "Self"

Henry David was a prickly sort of person and must have been difficult to be with. However he did not see life as a single event, he after all left walden, left the jail house and filled his life with a new adventure at every turn. Life in the post modern technological age presents us with too many things to spend our time on and steals the time we need for experiencing our lives. In another current thread here, one talks about it "not being about the boat" implying it is about the adventure and the experience of being and living the adventure.
The ambiguity you feel in a less structured environment (now out of school) is probably pretty common but can be cured by some good old critical thinking about where you want to go next. What ever you do, forget the harmonica or you might find your self further removed from polite society (just kidding).
John
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Old 05-31-2014
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Re: Rediscovering one's "Self"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coastlife247 View Post
So I'm an introvert. Have always been the inward thinker bored with small talk, and only really paying attention to conversations that interest me or I find perplexing.


My question is how do I rediscover the self I once knew so well?



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Are you an introvert? Or an a$$hole?

Whatever, being on a boat will not make a shred of difference.

When my (ex) girlfriend and I flew out to buy our boat and go cruising she said at the airport: "in a years time I will be a completely different person".

I asked who she is going to be.


A boat wont change you from being a narcissist (thats my definition of an existentialist). You can only do that by going out and shutting your mouth and listening to other people until you can appreciate that what they have to say is, at least, as important as what you have to say.


Mark
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Old 05-31-2014
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Re: Rediscovering one's "Self"

Some try religion.
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Old 05-31-2014
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Re: Rediscovering one's "Self"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coastlife247 View Post
Geez you guys make it seem like I'm about to cut my wrist. I have a group of maybe 12-15 friends that live 20 mins away, and I just mean when I graduated high school, I knew myself. When I graduated college, I knew myself. Since moving away to a different state and starting my new job in the past year some things have changed.
I used to know exactly what I wanted to do when free time came about. Now I seem to be indecisive not even sure what song I want to listen to at times. I'll go for a kayak ride and an hour into it I'll feel like doing something different, where I used to just be enthralled to be out on the water.
The fishing is not as good as where I moved from so I lost that as well.
I'm willing to try new things, so I'm just trying to get some new activities besides working on my boat. Like maybe learning to play a harmonica


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Greetings, CoastLife...

Welcome to the beginning stages of adulthood. I'm saying/typing that with a big smile, without any malice, judgement, or sarcasm, simply because not only can I recall similar feelings from almost thirty years ago when I was your age, but I still have pangs of them to this day.

You referenced your high school and college days, when you "knew yourself." That was easy back then; your days and many nights were spent doing one of two things; completing tasks that others demanded you do (your teachers or your parents, usually), or blowing off steam while complaining about those tasks or rejoicing about their completion or, depending upon the task(s), actually looking forward to continuing them. Basically, though, those years are spent in large part pre-programmed by others for you, so young people's thoughts are on "self" almost constantly as sort of an innate reaction to so many outside influences that seem (and may very well be) beyond your control.

Once those outside influences/pressures are gone... no more classes, no more living at home under "house rules... you are free to do pretty much as you wish. You need to find a way to eat, and most people like to be clothed and sheltered to some extent. Everything else is totally up to you!!! YAY!! My response to that was to become a full time jazz musician from the ages of 21 - 24. To my surprise, I actually did quite well. I made enough money to support myself and my wife (we got married right out of college, and are still happily married 32 years later), but we supplemented with the odd day gig when we needed more food during the low tourist season . Basically, thought, we enjoyed being free and had a great time.

Years passed. Priorities CONSTANTLY changed. Babies arrived. They became children.. then teenagers.. then young adults ... then moved out ... and here we are again, free of most responsibilities other than our full time jobs (which are HUGE responsibilities, and much more frustrating and time consuming than those nasty HS and college years we so railed against way back when... what in the world we were in such a hurry to leave that behind?!?!?), and we'll be retiring next year... when we'll find ourselves in YOUR situation again!! YAY!!

What have I learned? Self is an almost worthless concept. The happiest times in my life have been when I have been doing something that improved the lives of other people. When I can make someone else happy by helping them, teaching them, consoling them, or in any way help improve their life, I feel good my SELF. THAT, at least for us, has been the big lesson in life, and I learn it more and more every day. Took a long time for me. I never considered myself a selfish person, but I admit I've always had longings for things... I like and own a couple old cars, we've got a '72 Pearson 26 sailboat that still needs a bunch of work but is sailable, I'm a pilot and part owner in a plane, I've got a house that I really enjoy but requires a lot of maintenance and care, a small recording studio (I'm still an active jazz and classical musician). You know what? While I enjoy all of those things, they demand my time. They are responsibilities, and require maintenance. While I'm working on them, I'm not really helping anybody. I enjoy the feeling of a job-well-done when I complete a task on them, but I'm the only beneficiary for the most part. Yes, my wife and I fly and sail together and she enjoys both (but not as much as I do), and we'll occasionally take friends along, but the majority of the time all of those things are of no consequence to anyone other than me. Even after a great day sailing or flying, in the quiet of the night, I have to admit to myself that I don't sleep as contentedly as I do when I've spent the day helping someone ELSE.

I don't know if any of that helps or makes any sense. I guess all I'm saying is that, at least for me with the gift of hindsight looking back over 50+ years, time spent thinking and worrying about "self" and "what do I want" was pretty much time wasted. Self doesn't really matter. Most of the people I know who are searching for ways to "better themselves" or "be happy" end up getting more miserable. Look around your marina. Watch people. REALLY get to know folks. The truly happy, at-ease, accepting people are the folks who think about others first, and themselves last.

I hope I don't sound preachy.. I don't mean to. Like I said, I'm STILL learning these things for myself.

Best to you,

Barry
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  #17  
Old 05-31-2014
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Re: Rediscovering one's "Self"

Henry David would have seen a professional counselor, a social worker or psychologist who is trained at exploring these things. And if Henry David had been covered under Obamacare, he'd have been able to get that counseling for free, because mental health care is required to be paid for just like physical health care.

Or you might ask yourself, if these things bother you, why you would turn to a batch of strangers on the internet instead of reaching out to someone with credentials. Odds are they can do more, better, faster.
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Re: Rediscovering one's "Self"

Mmm, was myself intentding to write something along the lines of bblument, just from a different angle. But the very same core.

In particular, it is quite typical for manhood: "What have I learned? Self is an almost worthless concept. The happiest times in my life have been when I have been doing something that improved the lives of other people. When I can make someone else happy by helping them, teaching them, consoling them, or in any way help improve their life, I feel good "

There is a lot of philosophy coming in, one can discuss for very long the issue of existensilism (I think Mark has not really got the concept). One may ask if Walden is about being introvert, or looking for something else.
Still bblument captured it nice, when saying "Welcome to adualthood".

One gets used to it

/J
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Old 05-31-2014
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Re: Rediscovering one's "Self"

Ah, grasshopper (reference to the old TV show "King Fu"), the river of life has many twists and turns, and is sometimes placid and sometimes rough. You change, as do your friends and loved ones...and that's all good...it's in part what makes life such an adventure! What makes others happy may or may not do so for you...try to know yourself, and note the things that "feel right" to you - try to do more of that and less of the stuff that feels unhappy/stupid/bad/evil. My experience has been that if you learn what makes you happy and you do that, you will discover others who like that stuff too.

Oh, and uh, BTW? I'd say some of the most miserable SOB's I've known have been dirtbag solo sailors on broke down, derelict old boats, who piss and moan over their beer about why they haven't been able to hook up with the girl of their dreams (Victoria Secret lingerie model type is what they usually have in mind). I'm not saying that's you, but be realistic...the path you've chosen is not one that has universal appeal. Good luck though!
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  #20  
Old 06-02-2014
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Re: Rediscovering one's "Self"

I hope you'll take the following in the spirit in which it is intended. I honestly do not wish to offend anyone, but...

You sound a lot like I did when I was 25 years old. I thought I "knew myself" when I graduated from high school, also. Now, at nearly 60 years old, I realize what a complete lame idiot I was. Nobody who just graduated from high school knows enough about life, or has enough varying experiences, to even come close to "knowing" themselves.

Spending more than a very small amount of time worrying about this kind of stuff is just a stupid waste. Instead of wondering if you "know yourself," get out and live your life. It is only by gathering many, various experiences, over the course of your life, that you can ever have a meaningful "self" to know.

I sincerely wish you a good life. I won't, however, wish you "good luck," because another thing you'll learn as you get older is that who you are is shaped more by the way you deal with the bad luck that life will throw at you, than by anything else. So perhaps the best I can wish for you is that when you DO experience bad luck, you will respond to it well.
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