Humans have continuously striven to be free, but the idea of liberation extends beyond physical bondages. Mental and personal freedom is often lost in the web of pre-ordained choices.
A person born into a certain family adopts the surname, religion, ideology and even lifestyle of other members. They grow up in a society with its own set of rules, and in molding themselves to the fabric of the environment- they lose their authenticity.
So how does one break free of this? Does it call for an out and out rebellion as most teens do, or does it require a deeper analysis of self? The solution lies in doing the latter, but it is not as simple as you think.
Dichotomy of choices
The modern world is full of choices; the options are many, from selecting your wardrobe to picking your OTT platform. You can choose your mode of education or even a mobile that suits your fancy. Though, oddly enough, these choices, far from setting us free, limit us.
Picking between Netflix or Amazon Prime may not be perplexing, but what if your mind craves something deeper. While a long walk in the greenery or sitting by yourself without any gadget for an extended period may benefit you more, it ranks low in the popular list of rejuvenation.
Simply speaking, we are either creatures of habits who would do what our peers are doing or give in to the human need to belong. Mindfulness certainly does not make for an interesting talk with your friends as the episode of your favorite sitcom.
Being entangled in your belief system
Breaking free of your own beliefs or conditioning requires unlearning everything you have been taught to believe for yourself. It does not mean that you renounce everything and alter your lifestyle completely.
Instead, analyze what you do and why you do it? What positively impacts your life, and what changes do you need to make internally and externally.
Simply following the herd or doing things out of seeking validation will only create inner suppression. In the end, you end up being a byproduct of others’ decisions. The succession of choices is sensible only when it is a personal calling. Born into a family of educators, you may follow your purpose to impart learning. Similarly, if your true purpose requires you to be an artist, you will find fulfilment in pursuing arts.
We crave authenticity yet are forced into living a life where we are replicating others – if not purposely, then subconsciously. This condition works in a pattern, and the only way to break it is by fostering curiosity.
When we question ourselves and everything around us, we understand the relevance of things. The depth to which our thoughts and choices impact us.
Practices like meditation open us to new things and give us profound clarity. By emptying your mind, you see things from a fresh perspective. Only when your mind is ready to let go of the old can there be space for new, which is the biggest step towards being an authentic ‘you’.