The World being the terrifying, beautiful mess that is, we make our way through its mazes less like wandering, wondering, free adults, and more like children hurrying through a bad neighborhood on their way to the store with a shopping list from mother: fearfully, avoiding eye contact, with tangled senses of purpose and possibility and dread. We seek happiness and abundance and approval, but mostly we're avoiding trouble.
Given enough successful errands to the store, eventually we learn the Grants and Limits of our Authorization.
This One is authorized Work and granted the presumed nobility of his daily sacrifice. So Working Man receives his ration of respect in the abstract aggregate, but it never comes addressed with his name on it. Politicians compose hymns to his sainted martyrdom, but Working Man is authorized neither an individual face nor a privately owned voice. He is prohibited the joys and risks of freedom but granted songs that celebrate such notions on FM radio.
This One is authorized Poetry and may Wander Lonely As A Cloud, but Poetry Girl may not exhibit hard edges nor stand solid in the lovely flowing stream of This-and-That citing gear ratios and irrefutable measurements. That's not why the system authorizes poets. Your poetry license authorizes you one, but never the other.
And This One... well, you get the point. This One is mentioned only because Essayists are authorized to process Controversial Thoughts, but required by Convention to list three examples of each.
And so on.
We don't "find ourselves." We receive our authorized roles and then trim away all the bits of Self that lie beyond the edges of the cookie cutter.
If we're lucky, we eventually acquire enough perspective to see Ourselves within the System, with all its rules and enforcers and limits and inevitable gravity.
And then, without any authorization whatsoever, we walk through the walls.