28 thoughts on “6 Signs You Are Not Living The Life You Are Meant To

  • January 4, 2015 at 3:10 pm

    I enjoyed the article, and the advice seems intuitively obvious, but what if you can’t imagine when you are most happy, or most obsorbed into something. Or what if it’s been so long that you can’t remember even imagine being in that mindset. What if you have thoroughly conditioned yourself to simply strive for the approval of those around you? Do they make a different pill for this, because lexapro only makes you not care that you are not self actualized, and will never be.
    I admire mind doctors and their desire to help others, but I’ve never met one who can do more than write a brain numbing prescription.

      • October 10, 2017 at 7:05 am

        Hello Claire and fellow readers,

        I agree with you,
        But…there’s always a but…what if you work so hard trying to get what you want but you live in New Brunswick where nothing you do is ever good enough!

  • January 7, 2015 at 1:01 pm

    Interesting article especially for psych central as I have bipolar and have been very depressed since 2002. I deeply regret reading the article as it seems to me one would have to be pretty mentally healthy to initiate the changes therein. I can vaguely remember a time when I would have jumped into the suggestions and moved with them but these days I take tiny steps to help myself break free of the self protective habits that have become rather stuck.. thanks x

  • March 29, 2015 at 9:56 am

    Personally, I think taking small steps is telling that you’re already on the right track to becoming happier. I suggest keeping a gratitude journal & include in it your gratitude for what you’ve accomplished towards happiness. A gratitude journal may sound a little cheesy. Truth be told, it hsd worked wonders for me. About 6 months ago, it occurred to me that I almost didn’t WANT to be happy. I seemed to WANT to wallow in misery.
    Science has shown that when we constantly think negatively, or brains become wired to look at all situations with a general negative lense. Luckily, our brains have plasticity and can be rewired through purposeful action. By keeping a gratitude journal, one begins to change the negative thoughts towards the positive. Additionally, I’ve found it helpful because I can look back and actually see how far my small steps have brought me. In doing so, I find myself with more motivation & determined to continue forward momentum.
    I hope sharing this will be helpful. May you find the happiness you deserve!

  • May 18, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    The guidelines the article emphasizes really makes one thoughtful for a moment and thus helping them to shape their world better than it is.The answer to all our troubles and miseries is present within ourselves and the moment we are able to find that solves all our queries.The blogger reminds us these valuable information that most of us forgets or are not aware of.

    • May 18, 2015 at 5:51 pm

      Thanks for your comments, Nidhi, and I’m glad to hear you found the post helpful! It also sounds like you are well on your way to living the life you are meant to!

      Claire Nana LMFT

  • May 18, 2015 at 12:50 pm

    The guidelines the article emphasizes really makes one thoughtful for a moment and thus helping them to shape their world better than it is.The answer to all our troubles and miseries is present within ourselves and the moment we are able to find that solves all our queries.

  • May 21, 2015 at 1:55 pm

    What an amazing experience to discover your blog this morning. It answers so many questions for me. As I was reading my heart was racing, my head was nodding yes yes yes, and at the end tears were streaming down my face.

    I am an artist and am blessed to have 2 homes. One on the Gulf of Mexico and the other in the mountains of NC. My husband is also an artist. Our large studios are in NC and we each have a small one on the coast. For the past 4 years I have become the poster child for your blog in so many of the points you mentioned. I am also a person living with chronic pain. The weather in the winter is better for me on the Gulf but after really thinking about what you wrote I have realized that emotionally, mentally and physically I am just flat out miserable. That is why I have not turned out any decent artwork while I am here and have numbed myself with being on the computer. My husband is starting on the same path. Now I know I cannot live here and be truly happy. My body, mind and spirit has been trying to tell me but I just got the message because of your blog.

    Now I can hardly wait to tell my husband that I want to sell the house at the beach. Start downsizing, keep what is really important to us after 39 years together, and I am finally ready to get back to being the Real Me that has been lost inside somewhere. Plus when it gets real deep in snow on the mountain top we can go away like snowbirds. When I am feeling bad I would rather be sick in NC knowing I can curl up in my studio if I want to. At least my spirit and self esteem would be intact. Plus all of my creativity flourishes up there among the other artists, wildlife, and natural beauty.

    It isn’t going to be easy but something in my head opened up and now I know and understand the big picture of going forward. Thank you so very much for writing this wonderful blog. You just can’t imagine how life changing this is for me and for my husband.

    • May 22, 2015 at 8:12 am

      Wow! what a nice email MizLiza, and I have to tell you that I am excited for you! More than that, though, I am truly struck by your courage to go after what you really want. It’s something I hope we can all find — especially when we most need it.

      All the best to you!

      Claire Nana

    • June 27, 2019 at 11:39 am

      found this article that really hits home for me, then saw your comment and realized that’s me. Chronic illness. We have a home in CO as well as in Mexico. I am wondering where you are now in life. Is there a way to find happiness?

    • June 27, 2019 at 11:41 am

      just found this article and am in the same life situation as you are (at least when you wrote the comment), wondering if things changed for you…

      • June 27, 2019 at 12:26 pm

        Hi Kathleen,

        Great to hear from you, and thanks for reaching out. Things have changed, slow at first, but solidly.

        Change is possible, and let me know if there is any ways I can be of help to you.

        Wishing you all the best,

  • June 17, 2015 at 12:33 pm

    FIRST , what a touching illustration – of yearning, and seeing hope in the distance – is it within his grasp or just beyond?

    This is all relevant to me. I like that you emphasize a sense of purpose — I found that in retirement, this has become as much of a challenge as it was when I was 21… Also, Sometimes I can easily identify a gap, a void — but am not sure how to move on. An I have found that old strategies – and defenses – no longer seem to work .. I also found that – after a switch in antidepressant medication, I was able to feel things more acutely – which I wanted. But the feelings are NOT always what I want — that is hard, but I guess it might be what I needed as motivation to change.

  • July 16, 2015 at 7:38 am

    Good evening,

    I hope you will forget me, English is not my native language.

    I read this post, I can see it’s an old one, but still It concern my situation.

    What if I’m touched by all 6 signs at the same time ???

    I started last year with a treatment for panic attack and anxiety but I guess what I really have is some sort of depression.

    The treatment is based on Escitalopram, which I discovered being called Lexapro in US and UK probably. The same pills another user talked about.

    It is exacly as he says, at first I felt excited, no more panic attacks. I felt better, I still feel better but lately I started feel like I was suffocating my soul screams.

    I’m willing to listen to those screams, but how ? and what to do about it ?

    And on the other hand I need to increase the pills in order to supress this feeling of uncomfort, in order to get up in the morning and go to work. The temptation to send the work to hell is strong, but I cannot afford to do so.

    Any suggestions ?

    • July 17, 2015 at 5:20 pm

      Hi Ben,

      Thanks for reaching out. I can see that your situation is not easy- and many people struggle with mitigating panic symptoms without losing touch with themselves (I’m thinking this is what you mean by “soul screaming”). I would never encourage anyone to alter their medication without first consulting their doctor. But perhaps there are some changes that can be made there that would allow you the clarity needed to move forward.

      But you should also know that uncertainty, and lack of clarity are ESSENTIAL components of the change process, and do cause us to rethink our situation clearly. Even if the answers do not come right away, they will eventually.

      Be well!

      Claire Nana LMFT

  • July 25, 2015 at 8:09 am

    I have all 6 of these signs, but I am not in the financial position to actually make real changes in my life. It’s all well and good to change the way I think, but if I don’t have the money to make the necessary physical changes, then what? I have to work 2 jobs, am in extreme student debt, maxed out credit cards, so I cannot make a career change or relocate or escape it in any other way. What else can I do?

    • July 26, 2015 at 8:35 am

      Hi Jessica,

      It sounds as if your situation feels very constricting, which, I’m sure makes it very hard to see a way out (or perhaps even forward at times). Student loan debt is especially restrictive and something MANY people struggle with. I would suggest a few things. First ( and maybe you’ve already done this) I’d meet with a financial advisor to see if there are any changes you can make that alleviate some financial stress. Second, and MOST IMPORTANT, I would not link psychological freedom with financial freedom. One does not guarantee the other. Living the life you are meant to is about releasing yourself from expectations that don’t serve you, and following a path that is guided only by your passion. Bear in mind that also does not mean it is easy. Yet that which we value is usually made so by the struggle.

      Best wishes,

      Claire Nana LMFT

  • August 3, 2015 at 8:10 pm

    Thank you Claire. Very uplifting and insightful article.

    For financial independence I found the book – Your Money or your Life – extremely useful. It offers a plan to work your way through debt traps. Also helps discover and get in touch with the real YOU.

    Overall a spiritual connection with God and acknowledging the grace each of us are showered with every day helps tremendously to love oneself.

    Thank you for the opportunity to learn and share. God Bless All!

  • September 26, 2015 at 12:59 pm

    Well for many of us good men that are still single today as i speak is certainly Not our fault at all since so many women now are very high maintenance, very independent, very selfish, very spoiled, and very greedy, which is the reason why many of us are. And with so many Career women out there nowadays certainly speaks for itself since it is all about Money for them. If we were meant for many of us men to find love, then we would’ve been married with a good wife and family just like so many others that have that gift today. Not single by choice, that is for sure.

  • January 29, 2016 at 10:16 pm

    This article pretty much pointed out what I constantly think in my head. It Really is surprising to know that my struggle, frustration and dissatisfaction with my life could be laid out so formally and to the point in this article. I recently graduated college not too long ago with a degree,that quite frankly, I absolutely hate. I moved away to another city in order to work in my field, far away from my family, my girlfriend ( who i have doubts about having a future) just to be miserable. I lied to myself saying that my road to success was through this degree and that the woman I’m with is my soulmate (mainly because my parents like her) but the sad fact is I hate my career and I’m in love with someone else (my ex who wants me back, but I’m too afraid to break up with my current girlfriend and go with her). I’m under a lot of stress over this and my coping skills have not allowed me to break out of my shell and truly go after what makes me happy. I thank you for comfirming what alI always felt to be right and true, now I have to execute and ” go after it”.

    • January 30, 2016 at 8:35 am

      So happy to hear that you found my article helpful Aaron. And you are right now it is up to you to execute and go after the life you want. Not an easy task- but an admirable one.

      All the best to you,
      Claire Nana LMFT, author, Leverage: The Science of Turning Setbacks into Springboards

  • September 14, 2016 at 8:17 pm

    I found some of your writing to be very thought prevoking and I never base decisions on one paticuler thing I met somebody after a very checkered past and believe her and her kids are what I searched for but they want me but a simpler beter looking cooler more straight forward version of me I offer nothing finiacial spiritual or physical that thay want or need and lately have been ridiculed by my actions and sayings I want them and I seem to be here by habbit after a year rather than part of a family any advice?????

  • September 28, 2016 at 7:21 pm

    Everything on this article relates to me and more ever since I was about 13 it’s like this cloud is always over me and I can’t get out of it I’m nearly 29 now and still the same BS problems I don’t know what I’m doing in this life and never have

    people think I’m weird because apparently I’m a good looking guy, 6’0 tall, I dress nice ,I’m naturally fit never been to a gym in my life because I never needed to but my isolation as a child has f**ked my social skill I’m very awkward and find it difficult to maintain eye contact I put people off Very easily hence the reason why I’m on my own all the time.i have no woman[even though a lot of women are interested until I put them off of course]no kids I’d love to have kids but if I can’t find a way to be normal I’ll never find a woman to have kids with.I removed myself from people I grow up with so I have no friends I’ve tried to be friendly with people through the years but I have these walls up all the time it feels like

    I often feel like killing myself a lot I feel like I shouldn’t be here this long I’m 29 next month I’ve been thinking of killing myself since 12 years old this bullshit has fucked my life up I’m just wasting away and it embarrassing to be even seen in public

    I could go on but I’d be here all night and sorry for the semi literate way I’ve typed this [bad paragraphs and stuff]I never paid attention in school to busy not feeling good about myself every day.Can someone please give me some advice or help I’d be very greatfull

  • December 13, 2016 at 3:24 pm

    This resonated with me so much.. I’m so lost and I cannot find my way.. I’m isolated I’m overweight I’m lonely I’ve no direction. Everything I do is a failure.. I have such passion in my heart and I cannot express it.. I’ve had a lifetime of loss and disappointment.. that I’m tired.. tired of being neglected, tired of no one hearing me.. I’ve never been Loved.. I hate where my life is.. I hate how it has turned out.. I wanted so much more for me.. I raised my children alone.. all the years of rejection and setback and no one hears me screaming inside.. I need help I long so much to be free.. I feel trapped, forgotten mistreated.. how can I get free? I’m so alone.. I watch others lives, I’ve helped others lives but no one is there for me.. I am a Christian.. I have no church.. I have no life I’m existing every single day and I’m getting older and feel my passions dying.. everything about me is dying.. I’m so tired

  • March 7, 2017 at 3:04 pm

    Thanks for the info i have been felling all these things for a long time and i dont want to anymore. Hopefully with this i can finally feel imporant not only to the world but to myself.

  • July 8, 2017 at 8:13 am

    Thanks for this article. I am one year into a bout of major depression that I am battling daily to overcome.

    I have been a lawyer for over twenty years. Last year after yet another job change I realized that I have been engaged in a vocation that has never been my true calling in life. I recognized that my periodic job changes and lack of professional satisfaction are due to the fact that I simply am not a “lawyer” and that I chose the wrong profession.

    I grew up in a highly dysfunctional family and I bear all of the hallmarks of the classic ‘Child of Alcoholism.’ Sadly, the COA traits – low self-esteem, constant need to seek validation from and to please others, self-sabotage – have driven my life decisions dating back to my youth but particularly when I decided to go to college. I chose the wrong major – music – and then went to law school because others convinced that I would be good at it.

    Here I am all of these years later mired in regret.

    • July 10, 2017 at 4:58 pm

      Hi Eric,

      While we can’t ever escape the consequences of our choices, we never lose the ability to choose. And sometimes, it is only in reflection that we find clarity — this is why we need experience, both the good and the bad. Now, you are armed with the knowledge of what you do want, and although the path may not be easy, the free will to choose to the life you want.

      I wish you all the best,
      Claire Nana LMFT


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