“Hate to say I told you so”

I’m a great advice giver. I can play the role of cheerleader, devil’s advocate, brutally honest friend, sugar coat it friend and can be a great ear for a long winded venting sesh. Advice is so easy to give when you’re not the one receiving it. But then why is that when we are in the moment, we can’t take our own advice?

I believe this especially true for relationships and in careers. It was simple in college to say, “he did what? No way, lose him.” It was always so clear from my perspective. That guy did not deserve my friend. Obviously. And yet, looking back at my college dating career, I put up with way more than I would have ever allowed my friends to withstand. And this is also applicable in our careers. Like when we get those letdowns that seem like you’ve hit a wall in your climb to the top. To your friends you say, buck up, there will be other opportunities. Or, you’re SO great, if they don’t see it then it just wasn’t a good fit. But to yourself you say, you didn’t deserve it, you’re not smart enough, you’re not good enough. We say these things to ourselves when we know it isn’t really true. But we’re so bogged down by the disappointment that we can’t see clearly. We simply can’t see the situation from a third party perspective.

To me, probably the hardest comforting words to hear are “everything happens for a reason.” Because in the moment when you get let down, hurt or irked, everything does NOT happen for a reason and this is CLEARLY the end of my world as I know it. I will never, ever, ever recover and when I am 55 I will look back at this moment as the tipping point when my life started to go downhill.

At least, that’s how it feels at the time. It takes at the MINIMUM a long run, several yoga classes and a hot bath to even come close to getting above it all to see things clearly. Okay, and maybe a glass or two of Prosecco. OKAY or three. And in actuality, it isn’t until something great happens that you take a look at the steps that got you to where you are and realize that you wouldn’t be where or who you are without those letdowns, walls and disappointments.

So what is the secret? What is the secret to in the heated moment of a major bummer, to calmly look at the situation and tell yourself, this will lead to something great. Whether it be the painful years of dating letdowns that eventually lead you to your Prince Charming or career steps and missteps that take you to exactly where you want to be. I wish I could say I have the answer to this eternal optimism for you, but alas, I do not. I get stuck in the cloud of bummer-ness and often can’t seem to get my head above it all.

I’m currently at the phase where something amazing has come from something that had me down. I had to admit to my boyfriend that okay, yeah, I’m really glad the career things worked out the way they did. And he joyfully exclaimed Hate to say I told you so. (as if, he loved it). But, if we’re being honest, it really wasn’t until that great thing came from the letdown that I was able to truly move on. I feel that this reaction simply won’t suffice.

I want to begin working on seeing the positives in bad situations. But more specifically, in my own personal bad situations. I can see the good parts in everyone else’s stories and problems, but not so much in my own. And so, to anyone who is going through anything rough right now, it will get better. It will lead to something great. And everything happens for a reason.

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Change is scary

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Change is scary. It just inherently is. When you make a change, you don’t know how it’s going to end up. Yeah, things could get way more awesome or they could be terrible and you’ll regret it.  I took a big risk right after graduation, and although I’m sure one day I’ll realize what it was that I learned from the experience, as of right now I just regret it.

So, how do you know when to lean in and embrace a potential change and when to cruise along and forgo the disruption? When is the risk worth the potential reward?

I’ve thought about this a lot lately. It’s so hard to tell and a list of pros and cons can only go so far. The fear of failing can be stifling. It can leave you to settle with what you have now and not push for more. Change will disrupt your day to day life, and are you really ready for that? Will you be able to make that yoga class you enjoy so much still? Will it affect your relationships? And..will your dog like it?  And did I mention, what if I fail? What if I fail? 

The good news is, I’ve come to realize, that I’m only 24. Which is by far my favorite age thus far, with the exception of 4.. when I was still rocking natural white blonde curly hair.. I was adorable. (What happened?!). And at 24, change should be embraced. We should pick up the change, cradle it, give it a kiss and let it stay up late to watch cartoons. And why?

Because I’m only 24. I currently am unmarried (with no intention of changing that for quite some time) and without children. There’s no one relying on me. I don’t have a ton of expenses aside from a car payment and yoga bills. Now IS the time to experiment with change. To embrace potential new challenges that could leave you face planted in the cement with a bloody nose and a nasty scab on your knee cap. But, there’s time to get back on your feet. There quite literally is no time like the present.

But, you know what, it’s still scary. And a con list could be two pages deep, but your gut and your heart will still be in it regardless. So what do you listen to? Logic or your heart? In the words of my all-knowing best friend, follow your heart. Because now’s the time to make mistakes and learn a little.

Now I’m not talking risking your life by drinking and driving, #YOLO, drug experimenting or going home from a bar with strangers. Because that’s called being irresponsible, not risk taking. I’m talking real life changes. Like moving somewhere to pursue a new career, making a leap of faith in your relationship or seizing a potentially scary opportunity.

I’m about to be annoyingly vague.. but… I’m looking to make a few changes and hopefully have the opportunity to take a risk very soon that will maybe make me miss a few yoga classes, my dog might not like it and it might affect my relationships. But my heart’s in it. It feels right. It feels worth it. And frankly, I don’t want to live in regret of something that could have been.

Wish me luck in my vague reference to a risk that might not even happen?

Inspirations from Patti Smith

I’m not really sure how to say this without sounding cocky, so I’m just not going to worry about it. Just know, I do include a little humble pie in my daily diet. But, ya’ll, I am killing it this week. My effort to get back to reading trade articles flourished and I have already sparked something i my brain and have started the seemingly never ending search to find a good news site that I can check into in the mornings to hopefully start wrapping my head around what’s happening in our government and around the world. I’ve kept up my workout routine, my calorie counting and remembered that I can fully function with 5 hours of sleep a night – but no less (learned that one today when I went to bed at 2 AM and when my usual 5:30 AM alarm went off, I wasn’t having it.)  I even have a hair appointment scheduled for this weekend – bye bye roots! Someone should pat me on the back.

What really put the coffee beans in my pot this week was words from Patti Smith. I’ve listened to this video a minimum of 3 times a day this week. And that is not including when I force other people to listen to it and I listen while I watch their faces for a reaction. I just love everything she says. I can’t even add to her points, there’s no more explanation than what she’s already said. I love her laid back approach to life. It’s just like – hey, life is rough. Yeah. But it’s beautiful too. So be a good person, work hard on something you’re passionate about, be clean, healthy and smart and soak up all those beautiful moments.  The concepts of work hard at something you like, keep your name clean, be a good person, take the good with the bad and my all-time favorite just ride with it is what I’m all about. Patti’s here to remind us to roll with the punches. Let’s hop on this roller coaster, ya’ll.