Now that you took the courageous step of being completely alone for a few hours, how about we go a little deeper still?
Most of us operate on a set of beliefs about the world and ourselves that are actually not ours at all. Parents, governments, co-workers, friends - have all had their role to play in our internal answers to life’s questions: What does the perfect marriage look like? Which career path should I pick? Which country should I live in?
But what lies beyond the layers upon layers of social conditioning? Who are you, when all of it is stripped away?
This week’s exercise will attempt to begin to answer this question for you.
Close your eyes, and imagine a complete void. There is no one and nothing except “you” there. Do this for 10 minutes.
Are you - your name? Perhaps - you define yourself in terms of your profession or a hobby? “An entrepreneur” or a “writer”? But really, who are you? Which feature is the true “you”?
This may sound like a simple question, yet it is one of the most difficult, most important, and most elusive ones to answer.
Society suggests that we should not even begin asking it. “THERE BE DANGER”, they say. However, from personal experience - digging deep within can help you relieve yourself of many fears, and issues that are preventing you from living your life to its full potential.
There are many methods, and most require you to dedicate a few decades of your life to them. Let’s attempt to do it in 20 minutes. Please find a quiet room and 30 minutes of uninterrupted time:
Close your eyes. Imagine a complete void around you.
Start noticing how this idea of ‘you’ starts to behave in the void.
Make notes on how you behave when there are no limits around you & reflect.
P.S. Please only read the Personal Application & Work Application AFTER doing the exercise.
For the extended edition, including a ‘pro-tip’ that will help you save a lot of energy - click here.
🛑STOP! COMPLETE THE ACTION BEFORE READING ON
The void represents an environment without social pressure. This, in some sense, is the “you” without any fake layers. How you act - represents your natural instincts and behavior patterns.
Some stay in one place and do not move at all. Others (like me), start flying around at dazzling speeds, eventually starting the creation of their own worlds. Everyone is unique and different. There is no wrong way to be in the void.
Look at your natural response to this exercise, and try to draw parallels to your personal life. If you moved slowly in the void, how do you respond to being asked to move fast in real life? If you immediately start creating worlds, do you have an artistic outlet in life? Et cetera. Explore, learn, implement.
It is important to know who you truly are, only then you can begin understanding others.
If you are a leader and a manager who is jumping from place to place in the void, then perhaps you have issues with focusing your business and might benefit from having someone on the team that can help. If your natural tendency is to stay put and analyze, perhaps you need to watch out for overanalysis.
This insight into yourself can also help you figure out which teams you like to be a part of, how you distribute your time, and which tasks you should focus on.
📚Resources & Bibliography
💪I am An Overachiever
This exercise is similar to meditation, but it’s not quite the same. If you enjoyed it, I would recommend learning a little more about meditation by listening to Alan Watts.
💕Feedback & Growth
Thank you all for sharing your feedback, your values, your personal stories on how you spent your time with yourself. This warms my heart, and if even one person does the action in any given week - I am happy.
I would like all of you to benefit from these interactions, so please join the discord channel here, and we can discuss the weekly action in the #weeklyaction channel, and the newsletter in general in the #newsletter channel.