A: I’m just some regular 28 year-old, really. I’m from Boise, Idaho, and I have a degree in psychology from Gonzaga University and a degree in accounting from Boise State University. Up until March of 2012 I worked as an accountant (internal auditor), and I spent my spare time building The Unlost.
In a redonkulously crazy but calculated leap of faith, I’ve since left my corporate job to travel around the country indefinitely (you can read more about my journey here).
If you wanna know my whole entire life story and everything about me ever, you should check out my life resume.
Q: Why did you decide to create The Unlost?
A: Throughout my life I’ve found myself asking a lot of questions and struggling to find a path and a sense of direction. For the most part, these were the same questions that a lot of my friends were also asking— questions like “What should I do with my life” or “When will I ever be happy” or “Why is the guy I like such a %#@ &*^%%????!!!!”
In struggling to answer these questions I found a lot of great resources, but I never quite found that one thing that brought it all together for me. I think that my generation wants and needs this direction more than ever, but there’s not enough out there that is aimed right at us; there’s nothing that sufficiently addresses our specific wants and needs. Most of the stuff out there just doesn’t speak to the mainstream twenty-something or to the young adult who’s watching MTV every day. And yet there are so many of us who are looking for… well, something.
The result is that there’s a whole mass of young people who are wandering around and trying to figure out their lives on their own. There’s a huge void, and maybe The Unlost can help fill it.
Q: So what does it mean to be unlost?
A: Here’s how I’ve defined it:
- No longer lost; having found one’s way, one’s place in the world.
- Possessing a clear sense of direction and purpose.
- Building a path of one’s own making.
Q: Isn’t that that same thing as being “found?”
A: Not really. To be “found” implies that you are found from the outside, externally. Someone or something other than yourself swoops in and rescues you, finds you, or gives you direction.
To be “unlost” is different in that the sense of direction, the sense of self, comes from within. So becoming unlost is internal. It involves forging your own unique path, something that you alone can define and that does not come from outside of yourself.
This doesn’t mean that you’re alone or that relationships or spirituality aren’t important. It just means that you realize these things aren’t somewhere outside of you.
There’s also a difference in initiative. If you want to be found, you just sit there and wait and hope, but you don’t really take any action. If you want to become unlost, you take initiative. You stop waiting for someone or something else and you start forging your own path and asking your own questions.
Q: What viewpoints or philosophies do you draw from?
A: I don’t have one specific philosophy; I draw upon many, many different sources. Some of the areas I’ve developed a deep interest in over the years include psychology, personal development, business and marketing, and spirituality. I draw from all these sources and more when I explore the questions I have about life and about finding one’s way.
The articles I write aren’t meant to provide definitive answers or to convince people to believe anything in particular; rather, they are explorations of what rings true for me personally.
Q: What exactly do you mean by “spiritual?”
A: There is a description I like from William Bloom, Ph.D:
What do I mean by spiritual? I simply mean that whole reality and dimension which is bigger, more creative, more loving, more powerful, more visionary, more wise, more mysterious—than materialistic daily human existence.
But in the end, I think that it’s something you really need to define for yourself. For some people, it’s found in God or religion. For others, it’s found through a feeling of connection with other people or with nature or with life itself. It can be found anywhere; it’s anything that makes you feel alive, energized, loved, comforted, held, or [fill-in-the-blank]. Giving it a term muddies the concept—such is language. But again, it’s really something that you must define for yourself. It’s uniquely personal.
Q: Do you consider yourself to be unlost?
A: HA- that’s funny. I know for a fact that I am still lost in the woods— that’s what keeps me continually asking questions. But I can also say this: every single day, my path becomes a little bit clearer and I get a little bit closer to becoming unlost.
I think that’s the way it goes— I’m not sure that anyone ever completely “reaches” the destination, the endpoint. Instead, we get closer and closer and closer, but the growth never stops. It’s a perpetual journey to becoming who we were meant to become.
Q: Do you make money off this site?
A: My number one goal is to create something worth making, something that can touch peoples’ lives and help them find their own truths. If I don’t do this, then everything else becomes futile. That being said, there is nothing I would love more than to devote most of my waking hours to building The Unlost– which would require, well, some form of income.
Above all else, I will always place my priority on The Unlost community and on delivering as much value as possible. To have an amazing community like this– THAT is worth its weight in gold.
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More of my shtuff around the web:
Amber Rae’s revolution.is: Dance with what brings you to life
Tiny Buddha: Why happiness will never come to you
Brazen Careerist: Warning: 1 in 3 professionals suffers from this career-related condition
Jenny Blake’s Life After College: How to allow your passion to organically evolve
The Good Women Project: Being Single: Would you turn down the perfect man?
Boise State University Arbiter: Weekly column archives
Vivek Mayasandra’s Take Flight Project: Why I flew 8,000+ miles with no plans
Paul Angone’s All Groan Up: The Facebook mistake you don’t know you’re making
Diana Antholis’ Enter Adulthood: Why being lost is a gift (and why questions are your friends)
Josh Lipovetsky’s Optimistic Wellness: Therese Schwenkler The Real Story Interview Series
Alejandro Rey’s Enso Journey: Hall of Warriors Spotlight: Therese Schwenkler