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  • Writer's pictureDavide Ferrari

Think about who you DON’T want to be and only THEN who you want to be!

Recently I have paused to reflect on the kind of decisions that one often makes when faced with a huge change in one's life.

I moved to London about two months ago, at the time I am writing, and this marked a crucial point in my life because pretty much everything would start from scratch.

From one day to the next I changed house, city, country, job and went to live alone for the first time in my life.

These situations are perfect for thinking well and set the new life and the new me that would be born from that moment on.

The point is that it is certainly not easy to make these kinds of decisions because they will probably affect my whole life and my career from then on.

In fact, they are the kind of decisions that require long reflection and self-knowledge.

Which people will I try to be friends with which leaders will I want to follow, if I become someone's leader myself, what kind of leader will I want to be?

Who I want to be?

In this article I offer a suggestion to better address these questions and to live the phase of decision-making and more peacefully transition.

Thinking about who we want to be is an extremely large and volatile question. There can be a thousand shades for each character trait.

Determining who we want to be is perhaps too complicated at times and therefore my suggestion is to simplify the question and reverse it.

Instead of providing rigid rules of what we would like to see realized, we start by excluding the great set of possibilities that we do not want to see at all.

These are more general rules that give us a simpler and more versatile guide.

This is particularly effective as the years go by and situations change. We cannot predict the future and maybe some of the things we wanted to happen will never happen.

However, it does not mean that our identity cannot be realized.

If we give ourselves guidelines as to who we do not want to be, and every time a decision arises, we choose to act in a way that does not violate our intentions, then it does not matter what we have chosen to do, how we have chosen to behave and what a person we have become.

The important thing is that we have not become what we did not want.

In a constantly evolving world, and especially in a life that changes so much, it does not matter where every single step must be, the important thing is to decide which is the way to go.

When there is an unforeseen event, we will thus have the freedom to circumvent it in the best way we have at that moment.

Finally, sometimes it happens that we cannot make the most optimal decision, at which point the only thing we can cling to are those abstract and general rules we call morality that never tell us what to do, but always tell us what not to do.

It then become way important to have clear those general rules, and be consistend with them. Only then you are ready to deeply explore each trait of your character and shape it the way you want.


Think about who you DON’T want to be and only THEN who you want to be!

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