Roots of identity
As long as I can remember, I have been very reflective person. I have always been interested about what goes on inside other people's minds and what their ideas are about. My curiosity has brought me deeper and deeper into my own psychology and self-actualization through learning from myself and others, but the path towards understanding wasn't always clear and easy as you might now.
Because of my visionary mind and curiosity, I asked a lot of questions - I questioned almost everything. With my disruptive mindset, I wasn't the easiest fellow to hang around with, and this lead to a lot of misunderstandings in my childhood.
So far as I can recall, my attempt to understand the visions and ideas of others with an aim to achieve broad understanding of different perspectives, I was left out of groups as a 'buzzkiller' and wasn't able to make any friends. I was rejected plenty of times and sometimes maybe with a good reason, because after all, kids don't think that much about why and how, they just do. But like any other kid who just does what they do, I asked and questioned things because that is who I am.
But as any human who is not accepted like he/she is, I started to doubt who I was and that made me go towards the norms so that I would be accepted as part of the tribe. As I grew more with my analyzing mind, I was getting better and better in recognizing the patterns of behavior that lead to acceptance and prestige in groups. The behaviors eventually helped me to get along with anyone and so I basically was friends with everyone. Even tho I got the 'Good guy' statue in the end of 6th grade (which stands for a person who gets along with everyone), there was still something off in my relationships.
This lack of fulfillment in my relationships was caused by the fact that I was lying to myself. Even if I could make friends easily, the relationships wouldn't mean as much to me, because I couldn't talk about the things that really mattered for me. So even when I was known by people, I wasn't understood. And because I wasn't understood, I still felt lonely and an outcast.
As I got more deeper into the psychosis of being normal, the anxiety grow. I got some help from close friends that offered understanding, but the problem was that everyone was still struggling with the norms! So I felt like when ever I met someone new or had a basic conversation, we were like two puppets saying some programmed stuff and in the back of my mind was a loop of anxiety about not questioning the weirdness of this program.
Choosing what was best for me
Despite the inner feelings and insights, I played along and figured out that I had to choose my puppet in the society and educational system. This lead me to choose the path of mathematics and physics, as sciences are good at questioning things and I felt most at home with it.
I choose this focus point for my life in around 8th grade and followed that through high school to university, where I started my Bachelor’s degree in Applied mathematics and physics 2016. I felt better now that I was more clear about what I could possibly do and all the people around me seemed to be exited about my path as well. It seemed again, perfectly normal.
Even tho I was interested in mysteries of the cosmos and physics, I seemed to lean more and more towards the fundamental ‘Why’ again. Like why I’m wondering to know what is the big bang? Why I am what I am and what makes me questions things in the first place?
Waking up the psychic
In high school, was introduced to psychology and founding theories in development psychology and Freudian insights about ego, id and super ego. These ideas lifted again my deeper voice about mental states and how I and other people experience and behave in life. But as the curriculum was very basic introduction to psychology, I didn’t go towards it in higher levels, even tho I got the best grades from the classes. Reasons behind this choice were mostly about the identity around mathematics and physics and the idea that something very fundamental was missing from these psychology studies.
Despite this ignorance towards school psychology, I continued my research. What is it about our psychic that makes us questions things, think things and reflect. In general, I was tapping into the deep questions regarding consciousness.
My knowledge in astrophysics and universe integrated to the brain chemistry and psychological insights left me with this big void of how on earth can all this reality be real? And as everything seems to be connected, why do we experience this separation so vividly?
My awakening means the moment I saw through my own bullshit. There is a saying: “Fool who goes fully into his/her foolishness, becomes wise.” This is also true in my story.
As you have imagined so far, I had taped into my inner motivations along the way quite some time, but the old identities have restrained me so much along with the normality pressure, that I just couldn’t turn back anymore. Not until 2018, when I finished my army after I had a burnout on my freshman year in my university.
On summer 2018, I took a course on A.I. organized by Board of European Students of Technology. This 9 day event in Poland was my way to have fun, experience student life abroad and learn something new. But this was about to be something totally different.
When I arrived to Poland and met the other people from Europe, I had to introduce myself and who I was, like you normally do. But this time it was different. This time I was not in Finland, I was not speaking Finnish, I had no-one I knew and nobody had a slightest idea who I was as they have never met a Finn. This started to come to me little by little: Now that all the expectations are crushed externally and internally, I had no pressure to go back to my old identity – I could be who ever I wanted to be! I was no longer the prisoner of my past, but more like someone who could tell how I got where I am right now and what I really am curious about and working towards.
This new perception of others and myself liberated me, but at the same time, gave me a lot of responsibility. I finally questioned myself rather than others and that made me realize how untruthful I have been towards myself. Now I really had to take the responsibility of who I want to become and what path I am really working towards.
Starting all over again
These years of army and traveling were the most intense ego destructions I have had in my life. But by destroying the old, I was making space for something new. I had to start to build from the basics again: What kind of people do I want in my life, what do I want to work towards, what makes my day good and so on. But as I build this new identity, I could see some old patterns arising again.
Because I saw I was leaning towards my old identity with different awareness, I was getting anxious again. And because I had the experience of freedom abroad and knew more strongly what I wanted, I was finding the tools to over come the anxiety. Best tool that I found was meditation.
Meditation, the state of awareness about thoughts and emotions, really cleared my path towards more happier life. The practice helped me to calm the normal stressful days and made me better in various ways. But because I was just starting, I fell in the trap of using meditation as a medicine, instead of daily awareness.
I would meditate my stress away, then get stressed, meditate, do my old routines and meditate. My life was such a roller coaster. I was hustling and rushing to places and then sitting cross-legged again. I wasn’t understanding the philosophy of meditation at all. This oscillation of my life was again a great teacher about where I wasn’t and what would be the next thing to learn.
I started to realize the really fundamental idea of growth: One must work on oneself to transcend self. What I mean by that is, if you really want to change something in the world or others, you must start from yourself. That is also the wisdom Gandhi shared: “Be the change you want to see in the world.”
So I started to go within. I started to reflect on my own behaviors and what I was ignorant about. Also I started to take a careful look at myself and what I was saying and asking from people. Was I trying to understand or was I trying to justify? Was I really loving the person or was I triggered by not receiving love? What was I giving to others?
As I went through with my reflections, I started to see somethings. I started to see, how much bullshit I was again laying on people. If I for example felt uncertain, I would not be trusting my ideas and I presented them very badly, which then lead to people not trusting my ideas and again that lead me to think people don’t trust me. Aha! So if I trust myself, people will trust me! Of course trust is more complicated, but in those contexts, the philosophy of inner work can be seen that way.
Now with my insights I really wanted to spread the wisdom I had learned to others, but again, I was faced with a problem. If I approached someone like: “Hey! I bet you don’t know this!” That itself assumes one doesn’t know anything and it is quite rude. And I had to learn that too in a hard way.
I would for example get very righteous about my insights and defend them to their fullest. And this again reflected back to me, as other people would then hold their beliefs and ideas with the same attitude and no-one was learning. You see I became a teacher and automatically shut down my capability to learn, as in my head teachers teach and students learn. This is why I want to call myself as a student and a teacher.
What I noticed was that, if in conversation I tend to teach some insight of mine to someone, we would both be agreeing or disagreeing, but then the one I gave this knowledge to gave me the expanding idea of his/hers and I learned something too. So in a way, if we really want to be heard by others, we have to be able to listen too. This is why when helping somebody, it is important to not get caught up in the helper-role, but more like be there with the person and listen what the situation really needs. Maybe the one that you think needs help, needs to help someone that could be you.
Life-long learning journey
To summarize my story about misunderstood boy who studied science in the lack of fulfillment in the deeper questions of life, I can say I have grown a lot, but I am still growing. I am still curious about science, I am still doing the math, I am mental training, I am meditating - I am learning. I have gained insights what my past has taught me for the person I am today and what role does it play in my future. I am now more clearer what my authentic self is and has always been. I am the visionnaire, I am the disruptor, big thinker and I like to question myself and others. That is what I do.
My foolishness about doing things outside my inner motivations trained me also to see the foolishness of others as I see more and more, how I am fool myself. And I hope we would all see more and more how all the games we play are just games. Even the very real feeling ones about our career and so on, are just a one huge game.
My game in society
I have chose to play the game of ideas, the game that you can play anything with any rule you want. My game also includes everything and everyone. I want to know what your game is about. And further more, how you can win in your game. Because in the end, if you win in your game, I win. If you lose, I lose. Because you see, we are part of the same game, only we separate ourselves to experience the game individually.
And this is really exiting! When ever you go somewhere and meet others, you have an opportunity to change the game, play someone else’s game or let someone play yours. I enjoy a lot of different games, but at the same time, I have to keep up my game. Because what fun would it be if I wouldn’t have anything to offer to another? If both of us play exactly the same game, everything would be same no matter what we did and spoke. This would get boring very fast.
Avoiding normality of being is the biggest motivation for me to coach people in their own game and find their uniqueness. In the end, what would society be without specialized people, disruptive and fresh ideas - without different games to play? If we really are doing things for just the fun of it, let's do things we find interesting and spread the joy with understanding.
Thank you for your interest! Let's connect!
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