The most interesting people you ever meet in life have one thing in common; they are themselves. This comes across in ways it’s often hard to define, but is nonetheless true; people who think for themselves are more interesting, more engaging, and generally seem more content with their lot in life.But being inner-directed is not as easy as we might think.
We’re all conditioned to a greater or lesser extent by the society into which we’re born, our friends, family and the wider world.
So how do you drive your own original thinking? Well, of course, travel is one great way. Finding yourself through quiet contemplative travel, in particular, takes you to a place few other things in life can achieve. When we travel, we get a different perspective on life, we see and experience completely different ways of life and that, in turn, brings greater objectivity about our own existence.
“lana bay (Koh Phi Phi)” by Kai Lehmann (CC BY 2.0)
Even this can be harder in today’s smartphone-driven social media world, though. People who travel sometimes give you the impression they’re a little too keen to show off what they’re doing via social media than they are simply to “be” in the moment.
So be careful; what we’re really talking about here is the true you. If you haven’t the time to travel, then how about trying clairvoyant readings or psychic readings? These can be really engrossing experiences for anyone to try. After all, the person giving you the reading spends his or her whole professional life reading the thoughts of others, looking for signs and developing a deep understanding of the other person. So whether or not you believe in a spiritual aspect to this, it still offers a true insight into the kind of person you really are and this may not be the person you try to project to the rest of the world.
We all try to protect our inner selves to some extent, particularly in professional environments. But you don’t need to protect you from you – and this is where your best thoughts, ideas and inspirations will truly come from.
“Mind Full v. Mindful” by Heidi Forbes Öste (CC BY 2.0)
Meditation can offer similar benefits. Trying to empty the mind of all conscious thought while remaining fully aware of what’s going on around us takes practice – but it is well worth the effort. It’s similar to mindfulness which has been trending in recent years. People often use these techniques to relieve stress, but the process also helps you tap into your most creative inner thoughts.
The same is true of anything that demands your attention but simultaneously allows your deeper thinking to feel free. Some people get this through exercise such as walking, cycling or jogging etc. The process feels meditative in that it demands effort, but not your absolute full attention – so your mind is free to roam. For others, the same happens in the shower.
In short, we do our best thinking about where we are in life and what we may decide to do next, whilst we’re kind of focused on something else entirely. All these things can be ways to a more inner-driven you, which will also bring you greater inner contentment.