By Lolia Etomi & Ima Diawara
I am the Treasure.
How many times have you told yourself that throughout the course of your life? Have you ever? Well, there is no better time than the present to start.
From the moment we are born into society, we begin our respective journeys. We begin to unlock the secrets of human behavior, explore winding paths to “success” and navigate complex relationships in search of those that are fulfilling. We are often led to believe that there is some sort of ultimate prize; a goal which, once reached, will cure all our anxieties, and bring us the ultimate happiness and inner peace that we crave. We live our lives constantly in search of this treasure and sometimes fail to recognize when have developed tunnel vision and failed to check in with ourselves.
“I just want to make ____ amount of money and find the love of my life, then I’ll be happy.” “If I had what they had I’d appreciate life so much more than they do.’”
“I know I have so much to be grateful for, so why don’t I feel satisfied?”
If you ever have thoughts along those lines, you are not alone. You are not alone.
So many of us live our lives aspiring to goals that we feel are out of our reach. While the rest of us might reach our goals, even exceeding expectations and are immediately left with the anti-climactic feeling of ‘now what?’, before we have even had the time to enjoy our accomplishments. We hope and pray that others will recognize and value us and that it will be enough. We try to fit the world’s standards of beauty, intelligence and success – but something is always amiss.
External love and validation is not enough. It cannot be enough because it merely scratches the surface and you go way deeper than that. You will come across many crazy, wonderful, sad, scary, and exciting things in life, but the greatest journey you will go on will happen within you. And the more often you break out of auto-pilot and check-in with yourself, the more you will begin to find that YOU are the source of the contentment, love, compassion, joy, and validation that you seek. You can learn about your strengths & weaknesses, beauty & flaws, what truly makes you smile & what moves you to the depths of your anger and choose to accept yourself anyway and let the love flow from there.
So, as you go about your day, begin to notice moments when you get excited butterflies in your stomach and when you find yourself smiling. Appreciate something beautiful around you, be it a kind act, word or the beauty of the sky above. You may have witnessed those same things many times before, yet they did not particularly affect you. That is because, while nice things are nice, you cannot enjoy them, if you do not know how to enjoy yourself. So give yourself permission to enjoy yourself. You can work towards a multitude of goals in life, acquire more things than you know what to do with and seek validation from others, but ultimately, YOU are the Treasure you seek. Now pledge to treat yourself to something really sweet this week. Something that truly brings joy to your heart and clarity to your mind. Paint a canvas, take a nice nap, talk to someone you miss. Do what works for you and the next time you notice yourself feeling undervalued by others, stuck in your present circumstances or dissatisfied with what you have, before you act, repeat silently to yourself, as many times as you need to: I am the Treasure. It might take some time to believe it, but once you start owning and stepping into your own worth and value, you can start to bless the world and all those around you with your richness of spirit. You have so much to offer and when you recognize this, you will begin to see all that life has to offer you.