Most people fit into two categories: Those who believe they can change, and those who don’t believe they can change. While some people don’t think they need to make any changes in their lives, most people still end up changing. If life inevitably makes us change anyway, how can we come to embrace change more? If we’re going to change how can we make the change easier?
One of the things that most young people are told is that life is something similar to a blank page, you can do whatever you want, go wherever you want, be whoever you want, etc. Some unfortunately are told there are things they can’t do, but that’s for a different day. Most people like the concept of a blank page, until they really start looking at that blank page and realize they don’t really know what they want. Sure some people have their lives figured out and that’s awesome, but for everyone else the questions of who am I and what am I doing with their life are a source of struggle more than a source of motivation.
Additionally, some people are told to just be themselves and don’t worry about other people. Which that sounds nice in practice, but if you don’t know who you really are or what makes you special, again this can be quite frustrating. Yet if you just copy someone else then you’re not really even being yourself which is also frustrating. So what do you do? For me the answer is fairly simple, you learn to template.Templates can be described as other things, which again the term isn’t the important part, rather it is what it stands for that matters.
What I mean when I say template is a concept or object used to pattern after. For example, as a little kid most of us used stencils to help us learn to draw different shapes. These stencils were the templates, they allowed us to follow a pattern to obtain the result that we wanted. Similarly, if you’ve ever followed directions, those directions give you a step by step process to create something. Yet as adults we don’t always like following a template. We think we know what is good for us. Yet if you’re a person that is starting a diet one of the first things you do is you find a template that is laid out to show you the way, you don’t just figure it out on your own. Or if you do, you’re probably taking a longer time to reach the same results as someone who is an expert in the field already and has already done the research.
So how do we even know where to start for a template? That depends on what you want to do. But chances are regardless of what you want to do, there is already a template out there. Whether it’s setting better goals, better time management, learning to be a better person, or whatever your heart and mind could desire, it’s probably already out there. However, not all templates are the same. Sometimes it takes looking at a few different things and trying them out for yourself to find the one that best fits you.
The idea of templates means it doesn’t have to be a struggle between being someone else and being yourself. You can use people you see who are successful, understand why they do what they are doing, and then work to make a similar change in your life. Don’t get lost up in the fact that they are already successful, chances are at some point they were in a similar spot. The more like you the person you template after is, the easier it might be to get the results you want. Mentors are another great way of helping you template out your life.
In the end the world might be a blank page and you might have to change, but you’re not alone so chances are you can find someone or something to help you create something magical. You can learn and grow faster and go further when you allow others to help you. After all we were created to be a community, so reach out and use the resources and knowledge of those around you who are gladly and willingly sharing with you. In the end you might just be the template someone else wants to pattern their life after, so use your page in a way that guides the right process forward.