If you've clicked on to this I know you’re in some way intrigued as to whether there’s some hidden secret to knowing where you’re ‘meant’ to be in life or what career you’re ‘meant’ to be pursuing. Well I’ll probably disappoint you sooner than you think by telling you now that there’s no secret, however I do hope what I have to say helps you get to a place where you sit back, reflect a little and think okay I see; I need to start here.
I’m sure a good few of you reading this if asked if you know what you want in life would be abit like, I haven't a clue! Do you often worry if you’re making the right moves, the right decisions or commitments, in work and relationships? Or is it the opposite for you, do you avoid making any real changes or decisions so you can move pleasantly through life never feeling you’ve ever really ‘failed’ because you never had a plan as such anyway?! Either way hopefully this will inspire you to wake up tomorrow morning and see though fresh eyes with a view to take a hold of your life so it doesn’t happen by default.
For me about a month ago I wanted to put my whole life in a box (me included!), turn it upside down, shake it up and only open it again when myself and life were unrecognizable, but in a much better way! My life was great and I enjoyed my job but I had this feeling there was so much more I needed to experience. In short, I wasn’t convinced I’d turned every stone. I wanted to start again; I wanted to leave everything familiar and safe behind in the hope that I would rid myself of some shitty traits and habits I had that kept me from experiencing life freely. I obsessively needed to control everything so I was never caught off guard or disappointed, I kept all relationships (when I did dare enter one) at arm’s length or semi-committed so I never really felt rejected if it didn’t work, I could always say ‘it wasn’t right anyway’. I would isolate myself at times subconsciously thinking I needed to excel at every little thing I did before being worthy of any real connection or relationship. Any sound familiar to you?
Everyone has habits and things they do to cope and keep life ticking along nicely. It’s important to realise though that some of these habits and coping mechanisms aren’t actually serving you in a good way, I feel they’re actually the reason many of us feel we don’t know what we want in life. It’s like we construct our own armour so we’re ready for opponents that often don't even show up (opponents being rejection, failure, pain etc.), but the fights only in our heads. The downside to this armour, yes you may prevent yourself experiencing disappointment or hurt but in wearing that armour un-necessarily you’re dragging around a heavy weight for a long time being drained of energy which could be used to design a fun life instead.
So here’s what I’ve done. I did put myself and my life in that box, I put my business on hold and within the space of two weeks last month I left everything familiar and safe and uprooted to a new place. I got myself a lovely little job in a gorgeous hotel by the sea, somewhere peaceful and to be honest a place that feels away from the rest of the world. It’s a tiny village that to me oozes simplicity with its lifestyle, just what I wanted whilst I shook up my box to get creative and write more to you fine people! From here I hope to travel further afield to experience more of life, constantly taking mental notes of the things I want before settling down.
Here’s what I’ve realised. We often in life end up so far off the beaten track from following too many signposts which over the years are hammered in by parents, teachers, work colleagues and peers, signposts that send us detouring for years wondering why it’s taking us so long to reach our destinations - happy, content, loved. I say it’s time more of us start writing our own signposts, follow your own directions and map. I believe deep down there is something profound and exhilarating we can all be doing with our lives if we want to, whether you let yourself is a choice. So get labelling your posts and secure them in one by one. Book those flights to go travelling, get online and google new career prospects, make a move on someone you like or simply try speaking the truth to friends about how you feel. Praise and compliment those around you more, just do something different that shakes your life up a bit and expands your identity of who you think you are.
I recently had a conversation with a good friend of mine who I consider extremely confident and happy with their life. I asked what made them feel that way and they replied with this....
“Well I know what I’m doing, I have a plan and I’m surrounded by amazing people, what more is there to it”
How amazing would it feel to wake up with that mind-set every day? :) So where do you go from here? Hold an idea in your head now of the kind of person you’d like to be, more adventurous, more sensible, responsible, loving, playful, risky or more spontaneous and make more decisions as that person. Become a person that creates, not waits!
Final thought. You don’t have to be as dramatic as I have been leaving EVERYTHING familiar, however if you find yourself confused about what you want, ask yourself, do you feel the answer is about to reveal itself anytime soon being the person you are? If the answer is no then it’s time to start shaking things up my friend. Change something familiar and safe in your life and keep going until you too can say..… I know what I’m doing, I have a plan and I’m surrounded by amazing people, what more is there to it.
Katie Bunting's strong desire to make a difference and bring out the best in everyone that crosses her path has never left her.