And then a former colleague of mine died - he was my age and had a small wife and child. I can remember seeing him in the office in the summer, and by the winter he was dead of brain cancer. It happened so so fast. And it scared me, because it reminded me that I was wasting my life by showing up everday not present in my career, and I need to try and do SOMETHING new.
Hoping that things will change was not working for me. All it did was allow me the guilt-free space to watch bad TV and complain (Real Housewives, anyone?) So I decided to try something different, get off the couch, and at least take a stab at living my life, versus waiting for a magical fairy godmother to come across me and make my life beautiful.
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I tried and failed a bunch of side projects (writing children's books when I don't have children? Not a brilliant plan on my part!) and I learned that to be successful, I’ve got to try, not worry about failing, and believe that I can do it. And most importantly, I've GOT feel connected to what “it” is.
And before you say it, trust me I know - figuring the "it" out can be the hardest part. If you knew - you’d be doing it already, right? Right.
Here is an exercise I want you to try (and suspend your disbelief and know that a solution is now on its way to you, but it may not arrive on your schedule. It’s a process - but one that works!).
-Take a deep breath. Breath in and out through your nose, on a five count, and keep your hand on your stomach. Think about the top three work things that make you smile. Anything that really brings joy to your face (working with people? Writing reports? Figuring things out? What?)
-When you are finished thinking and breathing (good job!) write them down.
-Grab a friend and a glass of wine - brainstorm how you can do more of these things.
-Be fun, be silly, be free. Now take a look at this list - what appeals to you that also seems like something you can take action on? Start there!
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Ok this is a process, but sometimes all you need is momentum to move forward. One step, even a baby one, is still a step, right?