Does the definition of success changes as the time pass?
I think so!
We spend our high school senior year or even our college freshman years trying to decide what our career should be. what our line of work should be for the rest of our lives in the hopes to get it right, to choose a career we wont change or regret later on, in the hopes that will make us happy and make enough money to support ourselves.
That is a lot of responsibility (if you ask me) to put on an 18 year old kid who is not even old enough to drink! But many of us take the job to search that career that will shape the rest of our lives.
The Questioning Phase
Then years passed and then one day we question if we made the right decision, if we chose the right path. Sometimes we doubt our decision and start questioning if we should change paths. Thoughts begin to appear at the front of our mind like: Is it ok to change? What will my family say? I am still paying my student loans and I want to change?
I’ll tell you my experience with change: With the nature of my career, I had to work long days, and the higher title I carried, the more stress I carried as well. Days were passing by with the same routine – day in and day out. I would wake up, make coffee, kiss my husband, drive 1.5 hrs to work, work like crazy for 9 to 10 hrs a day – if not longer some days. Drive home again for 1.5 hrs exhausted to come home to a family that was already getting ready to go to bed. I felt my life was passing me by, I was not happy.
A thought kept coming to me, even in the busiest times! The thought would come during conference calls, or when I was quiet in my office. “Is this what I am supposed to do? Is this really making me happy? I am in the right track of life? is it worth all these long hours in exchange of what?”
When is time to for a change, change will come.
I had no time to sit and wonder the answers to all of these questions, I was too busy working and coming home exhausted. But the questions kept coming back and I kept pushing them back. Until one day, life forced me to be home and think about the answers.
See, the universe works in mysterious ways. The account I was managing moved to a different agency, and as agency life goes, a few of us had to find new adventures; find new jobs. Change happened to me, whether I liked it or not, wether I felt ready or not. The universe thought I was ready. So change came.
So wether you are looking for a change, or change came to you, you have to own it and take charge of what will happen next. It is your life, and you are in the driver seat, not the passenger seat. You CAN take control.
Anxiety will try to take over
I wasn’t ready to face my fears, to face these questions, to change my reality. It was too soon, I didn’t have a plan of action, a new plan to follow. I was forced to think and find the answers my soul was so hungry for.
There were days I wouldn’t be able to move, I wanted to stay in bed. Eat all the cake and wait until the answer came to me. (I eat when I’m anxious). I talked to myself, to my dogs, I took every personality and career test out there. Nothing seemed to help me move forward, to have an action plan. The anxiety was too strong.
If you feel like anxiety has taken over you with the sudden change, or with the thought of change, just know that it happens, and that it will pass. It is not a sign of weakness, it is not a sign of failure, it is a sign that you know things are going to change, and the fear of the unknown is natural.
Anxiety has a way to put a blind cover up on you, it immobilizes and doesn’t let you see clearly. If you let it stay for too long, it will bring his friends with him. His friends? Yeah! Depression, doubt and fear. So before it takes over, do some meditation exercises. 5 minutes a day, it will allow your mind to clear and move on to the next stage.
The key is in the Action
The only way to get moving into a new path is to decide to do it. Ignore your fears, ignore that voice in your head that tells you to be fearful of the unknown, to tell you that it might not work, that tells you that you should stay in the comfort zone; even if you don’t like the comfort zone and are not happy. Ignore it! just let those those pass by and say “I am stronger than fear, fear will not take over my life”
Life is not a straight line, and you ARE allowed to make turns, get off at exits during your journey and explore a new territories. If you are debating if you should move in a new direction, it probably means you are ready for a new direction. Follow your heart.
How to move forward
The only way to know what that path is, what you might like or not, is to have some action. You need to go out and do new things, you need to listen to your intuition and listen how your body feels with each action you take. Does it feel right? Then do more of it! Does it feel funky? Then abort! Or analyze what is making you feel funky.
How to know if you are going in the right direction
Remember, we are humans and humans have a tough time with change, but change is necessary, specially if you are not happy with your current situation.
Change although scary, is good, so continue to be guided by your inner compass, your intuition; your heart. do not lead your life by your thoughts and fears.
Do not be guided by your fears, your analytical conversations of one thing is right or wrong. Go with your heart, your heart will always protect you, your heart knows what you want. Your heart will talk to you, you just need to listen to it.