Transitions are wrought with so many feelings of uncertainty. Some transitions are by choice others are not but in either case they provide an opportunity for reinvention. However, often the question becomes what will or should this reinvention look like?
Several years ago, I resigned from a job that I loved in so many ways but felt like I needed a change. I thought, now that it’s just me and my husband I can do anything I want. Easier said than done, my friend. I became so overwhelmed and to be honest depressed trying to figure out what “my next” would look like. I just couldn’t see the forest for the trees. In fact, the trees were so thick, I felt like I was slogging through the forest with no light at the end of the tunnel.
During this time, I had a conversation with a friend who sent me the following statement regarding reinventing myself.
“You can reinvent yourself as often as you need to do so, just make sure you are doing it from the right place. When I say the right place, a place of happiness and satisfaction for you. I am sure that you have been similar to me with responsibility your entire life, making sure everything you do is the right thing. The question you have to answer is, if the “right thing” is or was the “right thing” for you. We did the “right thing” for our parents to make them proud, we did the “right thing” for our significant others, the “right thing” for our family, the “right thing” for our employer and when it’s time to do the “right thing” for ourselves we feel like we are being selfish and often go right back to doing the “right thing” for someone else.
I encourage you to do the “right thing” for you and everything else will be ok.”
Wow! Boy did that statement hit me to the core. I’ve always done what I’m supposed to do. Like many people, I picked a career that I knew would provide enough of an income for me to live a good solid life, I made all my career choices around my being available for my family, I made choice after choice over the years based on what would work best for me and my family and did not pursue opportunities that would inconvenience my family. I also passed up opportunities that aligned with my personal dreams that I felt would not necessarily be good for my family. That assumption may not have been correct but at the time that was how I felt.
After a lifetime of doing the ‘right thing” it has been challenging making choices that are the right decisions for me. I figure (if I’m lucky) I’ll be on this earth for another 20 or 25 years, that is a fair amount of time to focus on me and although I do think, now it’s my time, I’m still not entirely clear what the “right thing” is for me, but I know that each day, I’m one step closer to figuring it out.
How about you? Have you always done the “right thing”? What is the “right thing” for you?
Action Step: At this point in your life think about what doing the “right thing” for you means.