The Changes A Month Can Bring
That part — the beginning part — is often the hardest, isn’t it?
We say we’ll do something over and over again, but when the time comes to do it, we push it off until tomorrow.
The problem is, we can do this forever if we’re not careful.
This is where I was until this month. I could feel my forever coming, and I knew that wasn’t how I wanted my life to go. There were things that seemed too important to me to let never-ending procrastination continue holding the reins of my life.
I had dreams and goals and things I wanted to do and try, and I finally decided that I better get trying them now — because why put it off any longer?
Ihad just survived a stressful season managing a wedding venue for the first time, and it had taken a lot out of me. I had a lot to learn on the fly, and it basically consumed me for a solid six months.
I was putting in long hours, both at the venue and at home, and I couldn’t seem to break loose of “work mode,” regardless of where I was or what I did.
I was either talking about work, planning for work, researching, budgeting, brainstorming, shopping, doing paperwork, emailing, crying, or venting about the frustrating parts of my job pretty much around the clock.
As my partner can attest to, it was like I suddenly didn’t have a life outside of that bubble and that place. I existed only within the realm of work.
As you can imagine, this didn’t go over well with him for the sake of our relationship — nor was it good for me. I felt like I’d lost myself.
It wasn’t all bad, of course. Nothing ever is. We did have some laughs and fun times, and I honestly did enjoy many aspects of my job. But overall, it felt more like enduring a hurricane than something I’d signed up for.
Rather than riding the waves and keeping my head above water, I’d become submerged, and was continuing to let the place drag me down deeper into the ocean, day after day.
We eventually reached the end, and we could all breathe a little easier. I didn’t know what would happen next year, or the year after that. I had no idea if this was going to be a long-term thing for me or not.
I did know something, though: that I couldn’t approach it the same way again.
If I was going to continue down this path, I needed to take better care of myself and protect my relationships.
I needed to be able to still have a life outside of that place, those people, and that job. I needed to feel like myself again, and get myself back to a place where I could enjoy going into work again, and have fun while I’m there.
I didn’t want to feel trapped by it anymore, thinking I had to stay there because I didn’t have any other income. Instead, I wanted it to be something that I chose to do for the fun of it, and for the challenges it brings.
I think this is a position that has the potential to be immensely fulfilling for me, because it combines my love of learning, connecting with others, and helping them with the things that are important to them. It’s a role that allows for and requires constant growth, change, and evolution — and that’s what excites me.
It seems like the perfect fit for now — but only if I can be me again while I do it.
When the season came to an end about a month ago, I vowed to start doing more of what makes me me.
I started getting up early, practicing a morning routine that made me feel inspired and motivated, and writing my little heart out. Every day, I’d write 1,000 words or more, and share what I’d created with the world.
And you know what?
Over these last few weeks, I’ve felt more like myself than I have in the past year.
I’ve been happier overall, more energetic, and more at peace in my daily life. I’ve felt more fulfilled, and more satisfied with my day than I did all season at work.
There’s only been a few days this month where I haven’t gotten up at 5am, and only a couple of days where getting up and staying up felt really hard. Most days now, my alarm goes off at 5, and I don’t begrudge it. I just get up, walk over to the dresser, turn it off, and start my day.
I’ve published 28 new posts in the last 28 days, and now have a total of 42 stories on Medium. My writing has been accepted into two publications — one big and one small, and I’ve written a handful of stories for those publications.
People are reading my articles and enjoying them — some even enough to clap or leave a comment. Some are sharing them, or leaving me a little note of encouragement or thanks.
I’m making connections with people I don’t know, but have found something in common with. I’m discovering that there are so many others like me out there, doing what I want to do: sharing their words and ideas with the world.
My first month may not have delivered the massive results many of us dream of, but it is fulfilling to know that my words are reaching people.
It energizes me to know that somehow, in some tiny way (or maybe someday in some massive way!) I might be able to help someone. Each day that I write and put my work out there, I’m offering up something I’ve created that I hope is of value to others.
And that already feels better than I ever imagined it could.
My life hasn’t drastically changed by making these personal things a priority over the last month.
What it has done, though, is given me back my life.
It’s turned me back into the curious, adventurous, fun-loving person I am when I allow myself to be me.
By giving myself the time I deserve each day to do the things that lift me up and make me feel good, my life is constantly improving.
And that’s what eventually leads to drastic change.