When our dreams are greater than our present circumstances it can be easy to feel like it’s us against life as though we’re pushing back.
You might think you’re the only one with big dreams as everyone else just seems to get on with things without dragging their heels.
But if you take the time to speak to the people around you, you might find that they have dreams too. Talking to the right people will always be helpful and realising you’re not alone is a bonus.
Finding out that someone else in a similar position to you has dreams too is something you might not have even considered. That’s just one of many reasons to not make assumptions.
I think that in searching for stability you don’t give yourself enough room to explore and take risks. You align yourself in things that feel safe and reliable then convince yourself that it’s what you truly desire.
The pursuit of stability is often about fear and control. As human beings one of our core needs is survival which is linked to staying safe.
But in pursing something that doesn’t have outcome certainty it brings up risk of jeopardising safety and therefore survival.
Perhaps you wanted to make art for a living, but you chose to be a HR assistant instead. The idea of making and selling your work for a living has risk because it might not work. What if you don’t make enough money, you can’t pay your bills, you have to move back with your parents or move with friends, you get evicted, you have to sell all your possessions blah, blah blah
The inner monologue is amazing at getting carried away. You can go from one small inconvenience to thinking your entire life is over. And I think that there is a string need for an awareness for that so that we don’t end up listening to that voice.
You don’t want to end up wishing you’d taken a chance in your twenties, thirties or forties because you decided to live your life in search of stability.
But you don’t have to go in the opposite direction either. Go for what brings you joy, what you care about or what interests you.
When you’re a kid you think that 21 is grown up. You think that by that age you’ll have everything figured out, that you’ll have met your life partner and that you’ll suddenly be this proper adult with a career…
But then you get to that age and you don’t quite feel how you thought you would.
Is this what its like to be an adult?
That’s the kind of question you ponder regularly. You might even have a professional job in a fancy office but you still feel like a kid in a classroom. But you have colleagues, deadlines, meetings, projects, clients and a work phone with a company branded case. You have all that yet you still feel like you’re playing dress-up and pretending to be professional.
Perhaps some would refer to this as imposter syndrome but you can call it whatever you want really. Often the only way to cure this feeling/mindset is to tell yourself that it will go once you achieve a particular goal. Once you gain accreditation in your field or lead a project.
But moving the benchmark probably won’t work because it’s a mind thing not a physical thing. It’s about how you feel about yourself and your ability.
My advice would be (to quote Sinek) start with why. Why do you feel that way about yourself? Once you understand that, it’s just a case of implementing a new mindset.
Appearances are everything or at least that’s how it often appears.
The woman with a good education, working a great job at a high profile company.
The guy that everyone goes to for advice because he’s warm, kind and always says what you need to hear (not just what you want to hear).
From the outside they seem to have it together. She lives a stable life and is on the road to a successful career with lots of opportunities. She’s earning enough money to buy a property and take regular holidays. She works hard in a field that is highly regarded.
He always makes time for people and he never really seems to go through anything major. He’s an important part of so many peoples. He’s loved, trustworthy and generous.
But she’s unfulfilled, her life looks great from the outside but isn’t happy with how her life has turned out.
But he’s overwhelmed being who he is to so many people and now he’s scared to make time for himself because he doesn’t want to let anyone down.
From the outside they appear to be living great lives but from the inside they both have their own struggles.
Just a reminder that looks can be deceiving and that you never really know what someone else is going through, no matter how great their life appears to be.
In an age where we can create our own platforms and put our voices out there I often ask myself if I should be doing more.
Granted I have 2 blogs alongside working full-time and studying part-time but writing on my blog is something that is so safe and familiar to me that I wonder if I should be doing more to stretch myself.
I can’t help but wonder if with all the potential and opportunity in the world right now if just working a 9-5 is enough. In the last 20 years things have changed a hell of a lot and I often think about all the things I’ve ever thought of doing and could be doing.
Speaking, presenting, storytelling, podcasting, youtube, volunteering or starting a business.
I’ve even noticed that a 9-5 for so many is just a means to an end until the side hustle earns them enough money to sustain the minimum lifestyle they require. And even if the side hustle doesn’t become a fulltime thing, they care about it and put so much more into it than they do with there day job.
A lot of us worked towards getting ‘good’ or ‘stable’ jobs in order to live the standard or expected lifestyle. But we never stopped to consider the importance of having, love, joy and excitement for what we do.
Or we didn’t even consider it as an option.
I’d love to know your thoughts.
Is your job your main passion?
Do you have a side hobby or side hustle?
I’ve never been a career person. But I’ve always thought I had a purpose, some thing I was meant to do. I have no idea what that was meant to be.
I don’t have any particular talents outside of daydreaming, keeping a journal and being an ideas person although they are things I’ve been doing for over 10 years so perhaps they are merely practices rather than talents.
But I was work bound a few days contemplating my purpose in life knowing that it couldn’t have been the building I was heading to for the day.
I started thinking about how there’s little chance of me achieving much if I stay in this very limiting box that I often put myself in as a result of being anxious.
I’m much more out of the box than I used to be but what I’m learning is that your purpose, your joy whatever that thing is for you in life will only be found when you’re being your true self.
When you settle for less in life it’s useful to have a getaway plan.
A ‘I’m pretty unhappy with where I’m at so if things get any worse here’s what I’ll do’ plan.
It’s not that you’re totally miserable, it’s that you don’t get much fulfillment from your current life.
Maybe you have a good stable job, close friends and a decent social life but something seems to be missing. You might be a functioning depressive who isn’t even aware of where you’re at mentally.
The getaway plan doesn’t have to be pack your bags and escape to Oz. It could be getting a new job, a breakup, moving cities or even starting a business.
For me the getaway plan involves taking steps towards my ‘dream life’. A home with a big tub, a bookshelf and fuchsias. A job that doesn’t feel like it’s sucking the life out of me and time to spend writing and creating.