I’m somebody now! It’s this kind of spontaneous publicity – your name in print – that makes people. Things are going to start happening to me now.” — Navin R. Johnson

We all have a desire to feel known, loved, appreciated and validated. It is this need for nurture that often drives us to make the decisions that we do. As an ENF(J/P) extrovert, I thrive on my connections with people, trying to see their position in life, and using them as benchmarks for my own. I know some call this a flaw, but I don’t see it that way. I think that my judging myself by others’ standards stemmed from my nerdy upbringing of watching movies and talking super heroes with my dad and having the classic “who would you be” discussion. I take those kinds of questions very seriously. In a way, it helps pull me in to whatever media I’m consuming. Whether I’m pretending to be Captain Mal leading my own ragtag group of companions through space, or staring at a map of Westeros trying to decide who would have House Roboski’s loyalty in various events. My dad told me early on that our family is cursed with an over-thinking brain. Tis true. In fact, it could be that constant over-thinking and contingency planning that is the root of my anxiety, but that’s for another post.

Validation: proving to yourself that you are ok with yourself. Though not the Webster approved definition, this sense of requiring validation is my driving force. This is actually a great thing when paired with my previous post on The 5 Things You Actually Learn In College because getting out of your shell, feeling comfortable in your own skin, and all those other metaphors require you to validate yourself. It is a great thing, really.

Validation posterAs with a legal validation, you have to create your own checklist of what you believe are the core components of your ideal life and see if you can check each one off. If you can’t check one, turn your focus to that topic and work on bettering yourself. If a few of your items can’t be check, this indicates that there may be more steps that you have overlooked preventing you from moving forward. If none of your list can be checked, there is a larger issue at hand that I cannot help you with. I’m a blogger, Jim, not a psychiatrist!

This is definitely not a groundbreaking discovery, but the best way I have found to be happy with what I’m doing and myself is to simply do what it is I love. By pursuing my passions, I have found other people who have similar passions and I learn from them. Sometimes they learn from you and that is where you can really feel validated by external sources.

Now go continue doing the things you love doing and I challenge you to try posting about it on your social media. Maybe you will inspire someone else with that passion to step forward and a new friendship will be forged in the glory of the internet!
Final Tidbit: If you can spare an extra 20 minutes, please check out the video that inspired this post. It is actually one of my favorite short films. Check it out here.

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