No matter what we may be going through in life at any given age, we almost always come to crossroads. A moment when we have a choice to make. One choice may bring pure happiness, with some minor set backs. While the other may bring temporary misery, but is better for us in the long run.
These moments are the moments that define us.
Who we are. What we stand for. How we see our futures playing out. How much we can really take of something. What we are truly made of.
Sometimes, moving on from a certain situation is the BEST thing we can do for ourselves. These situations can vary. Maybe you feel stuck in a dead-end relationship or situationship (you know, when you are just “talking” to someone for a long ass period of time but no movement or commitment is being made? Yeah. Situationship), but you don’t want to start over. Maybe you feel like the city you reside in has nothing for you, but you don’t want to leave your family. Or, maybe you hate your 9 to 5, really want to start your own business, but you are scared to swap security for uncertainty.
All of these situations harbor on one emotion: FEAR.
We’ve talked about the F-word before, and trust me when I say that it is a feeling that can stunt the growth of even the most persistent flower. After years of living in Singledom, we thought we were home-free! We are scared to be lonely again and to risk losing the security of such a mediocre, but comfortable relationship. We are afraid to spread our wings and discover where a new direction may take us because we simply don’t know what will happen. We are comfortable with our salary, but HATE the corporate lifestyle. But, we are fearful of entrepreneurship because we may just have to live on a strict budget for a while.
These are real situations that real women, like me and you, face everyday. And the situations don’t stop there. Oh, please believe that they can go on and on. Switching majors. Losing weight. Getting closer to God. Training for a marathon. Committing to a new venture. Going after a dream, etc.
So, how exactly do we find the courage to move past that fear of change and really consider moving the hell on from mediocrity? I’d be lying if I said I can tell you step-by-step what to do to make you have all the courage you need. I’m no expert and I’m just like you. I’m trying to move on from some situations to better ones myself. But what I have learned is that there are some things that we should determine, then realize as truth in order to really see the importance of making these changes for ourselves and for our futures. Here we go…
We have to determine if the change will bring us happiness and make us more content.
We all want to be happy. True story. People say it all the time: “I just want to be happy!” But, what really makes you happy? Would you be happier continuing to talk to a mediocre man who has had you stuck in a 9 month situationship, or being single for a while, but therefore more available to starting something new and fresh with a person who is a better fit for you? Hey, it isn’t going anywhere for a reason. Maybe consider trusting that reason, whether you know what it is or not.
Would you be happier working a horrible job, eating out twice a week and hanging with family on weekends OR moving to your dream city, work entry level for a while, grind for your dream job, eat Ramen noodles and see family on holidays?
Everyone’s “happy” is vastly different. But, it is up to us to determine what that looks like for us and if we can live without moving on and find happiness within it.
Ask yourself: Am I cheating myself out *whatever* by staying stagnate?
If you are considering not moving on, what are you cheating yourself out of by staying complacent? Will you miss out on living your dream 15 years down the line? Are you missing out on meeting your soulmate because you want to stay comfortable and not lonely? Are you missing out on a new job opportunity? Are you missing out on potentially making your own schedule? Are you cheating yourself out of having a healthier, more enjoyable life? Are you cheating yourself out of getting a raise?
If you find that you WOULD be cheating yourself from these things and are okay with it, then stay where you are. But, if you’re not okay, really think about the regret that would eat at you if you stay stagnate.
Make sure you are not focused on the happiness and comfort level of others (unless they are your children).
As women, we sometimes focus a little bit too much on other people’s needs instead of our own. Our family, friends, boyfriends, girlfriends, husbands and wives may have more pull in our decision making than we do ourselves. If this sounds familiar to you, and it does to me because I’ve been THE people-pleaser in the past, then re-evaluate and realize that your decisions shouldn’t be based on someone else’s happiness.
Everyone must make decisions for themselves. If it will truly make you happy to please others, then please others! But ONLY if it makes YOU content. This is your life and no one else has to live it. Don’t waste your time because someone else will benefit from your complacency. They will move on and they will live. (This does not include making needed decisions based on the happiness and well-being of our children. Sometimes, we can’t get around that. And most times, we don’t want to.)
Think about how you want to look, feel or be treated 5-10 years from now? Can you achieve that without moving on?
If you stay where you are (in that dead-end job, in that relationship/situationship, in that major you hate, in that city you despise, constantly feeling uncomfortable, or comfortable, etc.) will you be where you want to be in 5-10 years? We you be working toward the life and well-being that you want? Something to think about.
Think about what you are REALLY afraid of and consider if it is worth it to succumb to that fear.
Consider making a list of the fears that have kept you from moving on… Are they legit? Are they worth considering? Are they even REAL? And if so, is it worth it to give in to that fear and to allow it to keep you still?
If we jump off a mountain, we will probably die. This a very REAL fear that should most definitely keep us still. Lets not be crazy. But, if we want to move to a new city and start a business, the worst that can happen is we flop and have to return to our hometown. And the best that can happen is we are wildly successful. But, we never know until we try.
I don’t really hear many people say that they regret following a dream. I’m just sayin’. So what are you really afraid off?
Lastly, realize that you want to be FREE from constraints, boundaries, hurt, limitations and regret!
The last thing we want in life is to regret making or not making a big decision. Sure, it happens. And we end up thinking about it almost everyday thereafter and it kind of eats us up. Who would CHOOSE to live like that?
Love yourself, your life, your health, and your well-being enough to take the risk, to make the change, to make the commitment, to go for what you want!
Because when you are 95 years young, speaking wisdom into your great-grandchildren’s hearts, and reminiscing about the beautiful life you’ve lived, you want to be able to say to them in your old lady voice, “I’m so happy I took that chance. Oh, yes I did. And that shit was epic.” No matter what your definition of epic is.
Giving up is hard. Trying new things are harder. But sometimes we just have to make the decision to care about ourselves more, cry it out, give it time, then Move. The. Hell. On. No Regrets Allowed.