Somehow it happened, you have said goodbye to an old chapter of your life and now you are starting new. Whether it is leaving an old job, starting a new family, focusing on a better lifestyle, saying goodbye to people or places (whether you chose this or not), having a new beginning is a beautiful thing.
For me, a new beginning is staying home with my two kiddos and discovering what that means for myself. It is both scary and exciting, it is hard and beautiful. It is also something many women who are not moms yet, can’t fully understand. That’s okay! But it’s true. I didn’t fully understand the amount of time, energy, and self-sacrifice it takes to make a young family function well (enough). Instead of apologizing for my lack of social availability and looking at my limitations, I am looking at the areas that are limitless.
As I discover how to have this new beginning, I’m excited you are discovering yours too! It’s a big deal.
- Look at the positives
Finding the silver lining in any situation should be considered an art, because it is usually not our first instinct. To be honest, there are some situations that I just can’t seem to see the positive side, but looking for it is so important. Go ahead, have a moment to cry, be afraid, vent to a friend, but just make it a moment (or maybe a moment each day, but after that, it’s time to get serious about what’s ahead). Find your strength, take a deep breath, decide to move forward. No matter what was in the past, you have a blank canvas in front of you. That’s a giant whopping positive! You lost your job? Be grateful for the lessons you learned there, and now you can finally pursue what you’re passionate about.
2. Set your goals
In college, one of my professors shared a story of how he worked for a company who hired an amazing consultant who just seemed to “get the job done.” This consultant met with the CEO of the company (who personally chose him), and they began to discuss the goals for the company. The CEO was very interested on what type of advice he would be given by the man that so many businesses had raved about. After looking at the companies list of goals, he said to the CEO “Tackle the most important one first, and do three things every day to move yourself closer to reaching that goal.” So. Stinking. Simple. If I were that CEO, I might have been confused, or wishing the consultant was less expensive. The lesson here, is you have to act to make your goals happen. The CEO did as he was told, 6 months later he was amazed at the progress his company had made. Sometimes we get so overwhelmed at the large tasks ahead of us, because it feels like we’ll never complete it, never make it happen for ourself. If we bite of a little at a time, pretty soon we’ve eaten the whole dang pizza.
3. Find the book, Read the freaking book
There is this amazing concept where people have spent large portions of their life (sometimes their entire lives) researching and writing on topics they are passionate about. These people are called experts (or narcissistic, who knows). This information is then transcribed, edited, printed, and sold on these weird things called…buu..booo…books. Put down the Facebook. Put it down! You don’t need that crap. Find the book, read the freaking book. Show up to the library with your current ID and they let you take these weird papery objects home for free. What the heck. Where’s the like button on that concept?! Look at your goals list, wander the aisles aimlessly like you used to do at Blockbuster, and find inspiration in the knowledge that someone else has painstakingly put together just for you. Maybe you need to heal, maybe you need to escape in a novel, maybe you need to get a hold of your finances. Whatever was bad before, can be made better by this super awesome person, YOU.
I’m going to go ahead and take that consultants advice on doing three things a day to make my goals happen. Currently, my biggest goal is to create a career for myself so I can stay home with my kids and not feel like a literal rug (something that people sit on, spit up on, at times walk on). I love my husband and I am so grateful that he provides for us so that I can stay home with our kiddos, I LOVE my children and I find joy in caring for them, I just need a section of time and energy devoted to myself & my passions, and that is a GOOD thing (end guilted justification for working from home). Three things, write them down in the morning and keep them visible along with your main goal. You GOT this.
5. Accept the detour, and PIVOT
There was this theme in each one of the books I was reading, and it became hard to ignore. Whether I read a book on programming, business, sales…the word “pivot” kept coming up. It was described as “knowing when to change courses,” or “it’s not quitting, it’s knowing when you’ve had enough.” It can be frustrating when we want something and the road to get there is not as expected, however that is also a beautiful thing. I’ve learned more from detours and challenges than I ever did from someone handing me something. Figure out when it’s right for you to pivot, and embrace it! It doesn’t mean that you’ve failed altogether, it might just mean that you have something even better ahead of you.
6. Guard your heart, and your dreams
Some of the most dream crushing comments can come from friends, family members, co-workers, etc. I’ve come to realize they probably don’t even know they’re doing it. I was watching a Tony Robbins documentary on Netflix, and Maria Menounos talked about how so many people at Tony’s seminar were able to have break-throughs, and she said, “it’s because we were in a safe place.” This completely spoke to me, unless you keep your dreams in a safe place, they can be easily crushed. My husband does this thing where he doesn’t like to talk about things unless they are coming to fruition. Sometimes our friends are surprised if we’re moving or changing jobs or some other life choice, because now we both enjoy not “hemming and hawing” about certain things. Life can be so uncertain, and there’s something really special about keeping a goal to yourself, because you are then allowing yourself room to change your mind, change your goal, do things on your schedule, read your freaking book, and ultimately grow. It goes from “I’m thinking about this thing and I’m not sure,” to “I’m so excited to share what I’ve accomplished!” The second sentence feels a whole lot more rewarding.