There are many different answers to this question- and, of course, we are immensely and immeasuarble complex beings. Within us lies a multitude of different memories, thoughts, beliefs, cognitions, needs and desires, and a constantly changing physiology. We have been brought up in environments that have shaped us- our family systems, culture, society's values, what our friends like, how people react to us, and what we have learnt to do to achieve success (or failure). We may have assimilated religious or spiritual concepts and beliefs, political ideology, moral and ethical values and developed own internal world structure.
Perhaps we arrived in this life with a certain soul or spirit that already had some ideas of its own to add to the pot?
Do we have a predetermined path in life or is it down to us to forge our own way?
One thing seems clear; we often aren't happy when we don't feel as if we are being true to ourselves. What exactly this "self" is, can be hard to determine. With so many influences that have shaped us thus far we may have lost a sense of who we truly are or what our we actually want to do, be, or believe in. This can cause anxiety, depression, a sense of longing or unease, or just a sense that thngs aren't quite right; we are not fully living.
If I am able to remember how I was as a child (at least in part), and get in touch with some of my more innocent feelings, beliefs and dreams, I could justifiably ask myself "am I living the life I expected or desired?" Getting back in touch with that part of myself is enlightening and helps me understand a little better what parts of my current life and being are causing a level of incongruity with my deeper self. Awareness is a good beginning: it gives me a grounding to begin to make changes towards that which I desire.
There are many ways to delve into one's more hidden self; dream analysis, meditation, creative processes such as drawing mandalas, various therapy techniques, hypnosis, and many more. Many you can do yourself, and others are most beneficial when you do them with another skilled and empathic person. If you are interested in understanding where some of your life disrepencies come from, or what they are, contact us to find out about our workshops that are structured to help with this process.