Stepping back from what you think you want

There is often a lot of pressure to know what we want and then to go for it.

We’re made to feel as though we should be go, go, go, otherwise we’re seen to just be lazy or wasting time.

And often this societal pressure leads to us chasing after things we’re not even sure we really want. It’s only when you slow down and step back that you realise you’ve been moving towards a life that might be wonderful for somebody else but it’s not what you really want.

The manager you need

When it comes to mentors, managers and the people that help support us throughout our careers, we often don’t know what we need.

If you’re like me, the kind of person that needs a push, you’re progress will be hindered by someone that mollycoddles you. Perhaps you need someone that is kind yet stern who will support you but won’t allow you to hide.

Given the choice you would perhaps run from someone that you felt was stern and run towards someone who you felt was ‘nice’ and ‘kind’. Of course those 2 qualities are great but you might need a little more than that.

When it comes to your career, you’ll always have to push yourself to achieve what you want. However, the case may be that the best person to support to along that journey is the person you least expected.

It isn’t worth pretending

When people have an expectation of who they think or want you to be, they have a difficult time I’m accepting when you become something else.

It could be a permanent thing or perhaps you are just going through a phase but either way who you become is your choice. I think we all need to have the space to explore and experiment in order to find ourselves and figure out the kind of person that we want to be.

Unfortunately, sometimes because of the people around you, you end up pushing self-exploration aside. Instead, you’re so focused on what other people think, people pleasing and wanting to feel accepted that you would rather pretend to be someone you’re not.

Being yourself doesn’t even feel like an option.

I think it’s important to remember that being accepted for the person you’re pretending to be isn’t true acceptance. Once you really take that in, you’ll end up realising that it isn’t worth pretending anymore. You may as well just be yourself.

Put yourself first

People that are considerate of others, to the point of putting others before themselves often end up feeling let down.

This occurs when they base their expectations of how others should be on themselves. But not everyone is as considerate as you might be. Not everyone thinks about how other people may be impacted. Sometimes people just think about themselves. They think about their own wants, needs and conveniences.

To someone who is used to putting other people first (often to their own detriment), it can be hard to accept when others won’t do the same. But the important thing to remember is that it almost always has nothing to do with you.

You don’t have to put other people first to prove that you care. It’s actually okay to care about yourself enough to put yourself first sometimes.

Another point of view

Sometimes when you encounter an issue you only look at it from your perspective. You focus on how you feel, how you’ve been treated and you can end up playing the victim (often unknowingly).

Sometimes we take the position of the victim because we want to be coddled and we want to be saved but doing so puts you at a disadvantage because you’ll always be waiting for someone else to make things better.

And when you go to people and tell them the problem you’re having you might find that they seem unsympathetic or as though they aren’t on your side. This can make the issue’s your having feel even worse.

But sometimes all it takes is looking at the situation from another point of view to realise that you’re so focused on yourself that you’ve ignored the experiences of everyone else around you.

Outcome based actions

If you want someone to trust you then getting angry when they try to open up won’t help.

It is so important that what you do reflects the way you want things to turn out, otherwise what’s the point?

You can’t just go around doing whatever you want and expecting or hoping that everything will turn out your way.

You have to ensure that your actions are in line with your desired outcome. But you also have to remember that sometimes things just won’t quite turn out the way you want them to.

What matters most?

Sometimes the choice you have to make is between taking care of yourself and meeting other peoples expectations.

Nobody wants to be considered a let down which is why often people end up putting themselves aside and focusing more on other people. But you shouldn’t treat yourself as though you don’t matter, you matter just as much as everyone else.

It shouldn’t take you sacrificing yourself in order for other people to be happy.

And maybe you haven’t even realised that you’re doing it. Perhaps it just takes you looking at things as an outsider to realise, you’re so focused on meeting other peoples needs that you’ve stopped making time to tend to your own.

Open to exploring

Who you are does not have to be so rigid that you force yourself to be defined by ticking several boxes and sticking to them. You can be one thing today and another thing next week.

So often we go through life trying to find ourselves and figure out who we are so that we can settle into ourselves. Yet in doing so we end up limiting ourselves because maybe who you thought you were or wanted to be at 20 will be very different to who you evolve into in your 30s.

We focus on things like having a career that we work towards from our teen or even pre-teen years. We assume that the plans we made 10+ years ago won’t change. And even when they have changed we struggle to let go because it opens us up to changing and exploring ourselves once more. We aren’t always ready for that because there is societal pressure to figure yourself out and settle down.

You’re told that you need to have your life together by a certain age which sometimes leads to you making choices to do things that you don’t even really want to do. And if you get to 30 or 40 and you’re still exploring you’re considered somewhat fringe, unconventional and even looked down on.

But maybe you don’t value the things that other people value. Perhaps you’re very aware of the life that you could or could have lived but you’ve chosen another path that has lead to a deeper exploration of life and self. Something you’d have never had the option to do if you had chosen to give in to expectations of the way that life should be.

Reasons to leave an online membership

This blog post is actually based on an online membership I joined earlier this year but recently cancelled my subscription for.

Prior to joining I was quite excited and I thought I would really enjoy the membership. It turned out that I thought the membership was pretty good and definetly worth the cost. However, it just wasn’t quite right for me.

But instead of cancelling when I came to that realisation I remained in the membership for a few more months. I wanted to give it a chance to see if I changed my mind plus I’d been a fan of this persons free online offerings for years so I felt conflicted that I didn’t like the membership as much as I thought I would.

In hindsight I should have just cancelled the membership staright away and then rejoined if I felt called to but instead I chose to trudge on. Looking back a key issue was the time difference. There would be interactive live sessions held in the morning but for me it was late the night before. It was difficult to interact with the content in the way it was intended because I was 10 or 11 hours behind.

The second thing was that some of the content didn’t quite resonate with me. It wasn’t that it was bad, it just wasn’t for me. It turned out that the stuff I liked the most was the stuff that was similar to what they shared for free. I came to realise that I didn’t really want all the other stuff from this person.

The last thing was that it felt a bit much for me to keep up with. There was regular short bits of content, 2 or 3 each week but after taking a break from the videos for a couple of weeks it felt like a lot to catch up with. This particular point is more that my commitment to keeping up with the content fell away and never really came back. Whilst other members were keeping up as new content was posted, I ended up viewing at my own leisure.

Despite all this it took me a few months to actually leave the membership*. But when I did, I didn’t regret it at all and I knew I wouldn’t be missing out on anything. Of course there would be great content to come but it simply wasn’t for me. I think I had a hard time accepting that because I didn’t expect it to turn out that way.

My main takeaways from this situation can apply to any sort of commitment made, it could be about work or something with a friend.

Sometimes in life, we put ourselves in situations that we think will be good for us. Perhaps we find that they are pretty good to begin with. However, it may turn out that somewhere along the line things change.

From the outside, the clear option is to leave. Yet when you’re the one in the situation suddenly it’s not so easy. You then end up staying in situations you don’t need to be in when you know that you should just leave.

Sometimes the issue is that we don’t trust ourselves enough in the moment when the thought first comes up. Instead, we give ourselves time to ponder and ruminate but more often than not we reach the conclusion that we already had to begin with.

* Another reason was because it was fairly inexpensive so it felt easier to keep paying whilst I made up my mind than to leave and potentially want to rejoin shortly after. I’ve been thinking and making notes about subscription services so expect more on this soon.

If you have to ask…

…you probably already know the answer.

Sometimes when you ask questions, you’re not looking for an answer, you’re looking for confirmation on what you’ve already decided or you want someone to tell you what you want to hear. This is why you end up frustrated with how the person responds, you didn’t get the answer that you wanted.

For the person on the other end they’re simply being honest. As much as you may favour a particular response, there’s not much point in asking a question if you’ll only be satisfied when things go your way.

You have to learn to ask the question and accept that things could go either way. You can begin implementing this by learning to give people the space to be open without judgement and then placing honesty above things going your way.