We all go through times when we feel as though life is leaving us in the dust. Our instincts may tell us to panic, or to push ourselves harder. We berate ourselves for not going fast enough, not trying hard enough, or not being good enough.

Stop. You don’t need to jump into action.

You need to stop pushing forward for a minute.

Rest. Reflect. Find Yourself. Love Yourself. Meet Yourself exactly where you are.
Trust that the greatest things in your life will happen in their own time.

Give yourself permission to be whoever it is that you are in this moment. What lessons are you supposed to be learning? What relationships do you need to focus on? What qualities are you building in your character? Stop looking for external indicators of your success. Take a moment to reflect on where you are in an internal sense.

You don’t have to control every aspect of your life. You couldn’t, even if you tried. Measuring your own worth on external factors is a recipe for disaster. You can not control your environment. You can not control what happens to you, or choose which challenges life throws your way. You can only control yourself.

How do you feel about yourself today? Are you kind? Are your morals in the right place? What do you value? Do you give enough of yourself to the people and projects that are important to you? What are your priorities in life? Do you invest your time and energy in a way that reflects them? Are your true thoughts and beliefs reflected in the words you say? Are your thoughts and words backed up by your actions?

These are the questions that you need to focus on. You’ll notice that none of them can by measured by your external accomplishments.

It is natural to compare yourself to others. Your sister is starting law school. Your best friend is getting married. Your co-worker is (happily and intentionally) pregnant. Your workout partner just got a promotion and a raise. Your lacrosse teammate from high school is buying a house. It is natural to see these things and wonder, “What am I doing?”

It is natural – but it is not helpful. It is not productive.

Instead, focus on the internal. “Who am I?”

Put your time and energy into becoming a good person. Identify your true passions and interests. Pursue them with the whole of your being.

Trust in the mystery of the universe. Believe that there is a plan set in place for the future. Right now you might not be able to see the forest for the trees – but whatever it is you are going through, there is a reason.

Good things will come to you when the timing is right. As Howard Thurman wrote, “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”

Originally Appeared on Uni Soul Theory