There’s an entirely different way of living that far too few people are even aware of. I know, because I’ve been on both sides of the fence.
The side I started on was what I thought I wanted.
Pursuing a degree in a career that I thought would light my pretty little fire, starting at the bottom of the totem pole in whatever job that most closely resembled that said career, and gradually growing closer to a place where I was wishing away my best years for retirement.
I had actually convinced myself that’s how it had to be. Everyone else – entrepreneurs, business owners, people living lives of freedom – were the rare and lucky chosen ones. And chosen, I was not.
The truth was that I actually WAS chosen. We all are. But at the same time I was CHOOSING to live blind to all of the opportunities that crossed my path because they didn’t fit my conventional molds. I wanted that “other” life, but I didn’t actually believe that I could have it.
So I balked at anything that wasn’t totally average, but bitched about having to live an average life. Go figure.
Until one boring Tuesday, when I woke up.
Like a plane set on autopilot, I was driving into work. About half way there, I found I was doing my typical morning thing where all of a sudden I wonder how I physically got to where I was in my route because I had hardly any recollection of driving there. How fitting – a blindingly obvious metaphor for my sad, pathetic life – physically going through the motions while mentally checked out.
But this morning, in particular, I was slightly more miserable than usual. My manager, quite frankly, sucked. She was rude, condescending, and lived to micromanage my every breath. I was dreading our Tuesday morning meeting where she would passive aggressively try and make me feel small while I smiled and nodded, as I daydreamed about drawing inappropriate body parts on her stupid face with a forever-permanent Sharpie (those should exist).
The day before, this guy I hardly knew had shared something on Facebook that really got to me. He posted a picture of his family going on a hike in the middle of the day on a Monday. He was all joy-filled, positive and was talking about how grateful he was for his life of freedom to do “what he wanted, when he wanted, with whomever he wanted.” Yeah, just what I want to read as I was across the conference room table from Satan’s corporate mistress.
So on my drive into work on that fateful Tuesday, I pulled off to the side of the road, wide-awake for the first time in ages, and broke down. He wasn’t just lucky! I was just ignorant. All this time I’ve been wasting my days thinking that this was how it had to be, when I could have been working towards something totally different – something I actually wanted! What the Hell was my problem? Why didn’t I believe in myself? Why didn’t I know sooner that there is another way? Why not me…
The next day – on a not-so-boring-Wednesday – I made a very conscious decision. I would be giving my two weeks notice in three months. And in those three months, I was going to build a successful online business that would allow me to flip my potato-faced manager the bird and skip happily in the direction of my dreams. And I wasn’t going to start tomorrow. I knew that I should have started yesterday, so there was no time left to waste.
I reached out to that guy who had once chapped my backside with his happy-go-lucky Facebook post and asked him one simple question…
“How do I do what you did?”
And so my journey began, and I have looked back since… many times. Because it feels really good to look at how far I’ve come, and it has been my reminder to keep going when things don’t just fall perfectly into place. I know I never want to live like that again.
So are some people just lucky?
You bet they are! It’s not because they tripped and fell perfectly into some chosen life, it’s because they CHOSE to create the life they wanted to live.
And because of that simple idea – you can live the life you most want – I don’t have a pretty little fire lit beneath me. I have a blazing forest fire, and I use that burning passion to teach as many deserving people as I possibly can that they can feel that passion for life, too.
It’s not easy. It’s not always quick. And people will constantly tell you that you can’t (which I welcome… ever pour gasoline on a fire?). I know the what, the how, and most importantly, I help them connect to the WHY.
Because like Friedrich Nietzsche said…
“If you know the why, you can endure any how.”
So whatever it is that is sucking your soul dry of its essence – a nine-to-five, a lack of fulfillment, debt, you’re unhappy with your health, weight, or boyfriend who (let’s face it) is a total dud – there is another way. You just have to be willing to change direction with me…