Thank You, Next: How to Know When It's Time to Change Your Life
Thank You, Next.
A big lesson in
changing your pants
and changing your life.
It's okay to be inspired to change your life solely based off an Ariana Grande song, right?
Good. Glad we're in alignment.
I wanted to talk about the time I went running and realized I had my pants on backwards. Because, life.
You see, I threw on my favorite pair of basic, black yoga pants and went out for a couple mile run. You know the kind of pants that are so comfortable you don't feel like you are wearing any? The booty-shaping, fit-like-a-glove, love-handle-hiding ones? Those ones.
But my favorite pants were failing me because about three miles in, I was ready to rip my hair out with how much readjusting going on. Guys, I was so uncomfortable. It was then I realized that my pants were, indeed, on backwards. I got dressed like a toddler this morning.
Obviously, I'm in the center of town it's not like I can stop and switch my pants around, right? Well, another half-mile and I was over it. My run turned into a walk, the more annoyed I became the more my discomfort grew. I was so disturbed, I felt like I suddenly had a choice...
I could keep experiencing the discomfort.
I could squat behind this bush, in broad daylight, and change my pants around.
If you're wondering what I did, go ahead and picture me pants down around my ankles squatting behind a bush.
So, how do you know when it's time to change your life?
Well...the Universe will start making you really uncomfortable. Even a part of your life you once adored might suddenly seem off. It could start as a feeling you can't quite put your finger on. Then the Universe may amp it up a bit, take that comfortable job and give you a new boss who is a raging jerk. Your boyfriend might suddenly start acting shady and distant. Little problems will surface not just internally but in your external world.
And let me be clear, the Universe doesn't do this because it hates you. Although there have been times in my life i've been strongly convinced otherwise. Discomfort happens because we rarely grow in comfort. We rarely take our life to the next level unless what is in front of us, isn't working...like, at all. This discomfort is a weird way the Universe promises you there's more. More happiness. More love. More success. More excitement. More money. Bigger opportunities. More, more, more -- all for you!!
I stumbled upon a quote the other day that said something along the lines of,
"Stop holding raindrops when God has an ocean waiting for you."
Change has been on my mind for the past few months because I decided to pack up my life, my kids, and move 700 miles away from everything I had ever known including friends, family, and even my career. Yes. This is exactly as terrifying as it sounds. From an outsider's perspective, my move looked like I closed my eyes, threw a dart, and hopped on down to South Carolina. This wasn't the case.
About a year or two ago, I started feeling really restless.
All the things that once felt incredible and exciting suddenly started to feel off. I had no real reason, so I pushed through what I call my "weird phase" in hopes life would shift back to normal. It never did. These uncomfortable feelings kept growing, to the point I had to do some major soul searching. I began to explore what I felt like I was missing. What did I really want?
I spent that New Year's Eve in South Carolina and woke up to 70 degrees, sunshine, and a day full of playing outside with my kids. I had a moment where I started crying. I was so happy to be outside in January. I was so happy to have this time with my kids where I wasn't cooped up inside. I realized all the travel I felt I needed was actually pulling my soul to explore other areas to call home.
I packed up my stuff and left in November. Excited for all of the new opportunities. Excited to live near a thriving city. Excited for the impact I could make on this new community. Excited for the weather and the beach and all. the. things! But five weeks in, that excitement disappeared and was replaced with a weird feeling of being invisible, combined with a loneliness I can't even describe.
I missed my friends. I missed social activities and walking into a place where everyone knew me. I called one of my best friends and remember saying, "Do you think moving was a mistake?"
In the midst of all my excitement, it wasn't that I didn't weigh the odds of what I was losing, it's that I didn't really give myself time to grieve. I felt like it was my choice to move and I had to fake happy, even if I wasn't yet. But the reality is, when you make a HUGE life change you are still losing parts of your normalcy, your routine, you might lose people, or parts of yourself and its okay to be a little jacked up about that. Give yourself time to grieve the change, the ways life isn't the same anymore. Have compassion for the adjustment period.
I've put together a few things that have helped me feel better about changing my life. I hope they help you feel better about changing yours, whether you're considering a cross country move, leaving that job to dive into a self-owned business, exiting a relationship, adding a child to your family, or any other major life change (even if the change wasn't your choice). Here are some things to focus on:
1. Find hope.
If you didn't choose the change and the change chose you, you can still trust that maybe what was in front of you wasn't the best fit. Maybe it was stopping you from growing into your best self. The universe doesn't happen TO you it happens FOR you, there is something way better on it's way.
If this was a change you DID choose, hold your vision for what you know is possible for you. Trust that in time the Universe will show up for you. If you're like me and have less patience than my grandma playing BINGO then this is a perfect place to perfect patience or trying to control the situation. Maybe you need to up your prayer count. Set a few more intentions. Or get a little more clear and excited for what can show up in your world.
2. Focus on the present.
As much as its totally fine to give yourself time to grieve, you can't stay there. I began to find little things to get excited about in my new hometown whether it was meeting new friends, attending yoga at local breweries, finding delicious new restaurants. or attending really cool events. I looked for joy in each day and even took walks to soak in the sunshine, audibly reminding myself I was getting to do be comfortably outside in JANUARY. Breathe and bring yourself into the present. How are you going to become your best self in this new scenario? What's something you've always wanted to try or do?
3. Raise your standards.
Guess what? You get to stop accepting what has been happening and demand a better life for yourself. When we get too comfortable we start to accept less than what we actually want in our life. We let people treat us poorly, we accept our misery, and we rarely ask for more. But in this change you can shake everything up. Go through and see what you really want. What types of relationships do you want? How do you want people to treat you? What is your ideal job setting and co-worker situation? What kinds of people or friendships do you want to surround yourself with?
This was especially relevant for me at this time because I went from having a serious friend group to having no one. So I joined Bumble BFF, an app where you can meet local friends in your area. It was here I began to start to assess what I actually wanted in a friend. Who did I want to surround myself? Well certainly I need people who are funny. I began to ask myself questions that I had never really thought of because friendships had always been so automatic.
Ask yourself. If you could wipe the slate clean what do you unapologetically REALLY want?
4. Know yourself.
This period of time for me has been a lot of reflecting. Life changes really show you what you're made of and parts of you that need some strengthening. It's okay to hide out a little and take a couple extra bubble baths. It's totally fine to read more self help books than ever...because well, we sometimes need help getting clear within our selves. This is a great time for reflections. Asking yourself the hard questions and firing up your badass, self worth.
The thing I know about me is that I've been through some shit. I've been through it and as hard as it was or as low as it made me feel as much as it tore me down, i have ALWAYS come out the other side stronger and better than ever. And I believe that to be true about you, too. If you decide it is.
So, I hope if you are on the edge of something, just swimming in discomfort. If your mind has wandered to what else might be possible for you. Let it. You're worth more. More is possible for you. Take the risk and dive head first into foreign happiness. Give yourself time, refocus, hold hope, keep your vision, and ask all the important questions. And I hope if you have a choice between sitting in the discomfort or changing your life, that you squat behind that bush in broad daylight, and change your damn life.