I’m positive I was the kid who asked this question all the time. I can remember trying to memorize theorems and formulas in high school math class, and wanting to know WHY it worked. “Just because it does” was not an acceptable answer. I wanted to understand at the foundational level. That’s the reason we ask the simple question. We want to understand. Whether it’s a simple question of why, like asking your husband why he forgot to take out the garbage after you reminded him seven times. Or, a more complicated one like why do you exist, we all just want to identify with the subject at hand.
2018 has been a year of huge change for me. As I reflect back on a few of the things that’ve happened, it all comes down to my own personal why. I guess you can think of it as sort of a personal mission statement. Why you do what you do. I’m not just talking about work, although that’s a necessary part to take a look at. But, why you do everything in your life. After all, this is not dress rehearsal. So, why do you do what you do? I’ll give you a few minutes to ponder on this one. I would actually encourage you to grab a pen and a piece of paper and jot down some of your whys right now. No….really. Do it. Once you get past the initial one, it gets easier. Brainstorm for five minutes.
Welcome back! I hope you enjoyed that exercise and perhaps even it gave you a different perspective, even if only for a few minutes, of your priorities. Perhaps it let you know that you really need to change your priorities and your whys. But, any who, I want to tell you briefly what I realized this year about my why. It may seem extremely elementary to some, but I tend to overcomplicate things, so back to basics we go.
If you’ve ever read my blog or have been following me on social media, you’ve all heard me talk about a shift that occurred in my life in 2015. I don’t go into great detail about that shift because the details don’t really matter. What does matter is something in my life happened that made me take a good hard look at myself. I learned why I am the way I am. Why I never felt comfortable in my own skin. Why I self-sabotaged. Why I treated other people the way I treated them. Why I numbed myself with alcohol and food. Why I felt like I didn’t care if I lived or died. I didn’t find the answers to these questions in a book, or learn them from a guru. They were, and continue to be revealed to me with time on my new journey.
I believe we all have a calling, or a passion. Whether or not that calling is what you do for your profession doesn’t matter. What does matter is that the things and people in your life are supportive of that dream. What I wrestled with this year was working in an environment that I didn’t felt was 100% supportive of my passion. I want to make clear that this is NOT a negative statement about the industry or company that I worked in. Instead, it is simply an acknowledgment that it was no longer the right fit in MY life for the things I want, and feel called to pursue. With that being said, leaving was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do.
For a while, I felt in my gut that i needed to make the change in order to fully commit to my calling. But, that pesky little four letter F word wreaked havoc on me. FEAR. It would’ve been so much easier if I didn’t enjoy the people, and disliked the company. But, the truth was it was great. The harder truth was it just wasn’t great for me.
After wrestling with this truly life changing decision for what seemed like an eternity, I ultimately came to my decision by asking myself why. Why was I staying? Why did I want to go? Why was I ignoring my intuition? As soon as I could honestly answer those questions, it became really clear that in order to be true to myself, I had to leave. Even though the answer became clear, it still didn’t make the actual pulling of the trigger any easier. What did help though, was remembering why.