This week last year, I was flying to California to do a second visit to my Northern California academy high schools. I was drained, thankful for the beautiful weather, time to myself, and maybe even relieved for some time out of the office. Okay, I was definitely relieved.
I was feeling restless. Unhappy. Frustrated. Alone. Exhausted.
I had just stopped talking to a guy, my friends were all coupled up, church wasn’t where I wanted it to be in my life thanks to my job, I was incredibly frustrated with my job, the list goes on.
On this specific trip, I was able to drive with the windows down, go at my own pace–thanks to the schedule I had set up and just breathe. Something I had forgotten to do often, it seemed.
It was in California, I realized I was done with my job at Southern.
I had been done for awhile, but I was finally able to admit it to myself at the end of that trip. All the negativity was seeping into every part of my life–the parts where I felt restless because it didn’t seem anything was working out for me. My friends and family kept telling me I just needed to find another job. I would tell them it wasn’t that easy–my entire life was in Chattanooga. But it was in California, I realized maybe that was something I needed to really consider. Could it be that simple?
Of course, the short answer is yes, but.
I started imaging what I wanted to do with my life–when it wouldn’t be wrapped up in working for Southern–the places I could live, the jobs I could have, the people I would meet. I started getting excited for what was next for me. At the same time, overwhelmed by where even to start and what I would be leaving behind.
Two weeks later, I walked out of the third high school graduation ceremony in two weekends and said out loud to myself, “I’m never doing that again.” My mind had finally been made up and I was willing to step through whatever fear was in my way.
Literally, the next day (Monday) I received an email from an old college friend wondering if I knew of anyone interested in a PR/Marketing job. I thought about giving her some names of people I knew were job searching, before telling her, “Can I put my name in the mix? LOL.” To which she replied, “You know you could! If the pay and job description interest you…”
Nothing immediately happened after that–it was a step in the right direction, but I learned through the process that when my circumstances weren’t going to change, I had to change my circumstances. I had to decide what was important to me with the life I wanted. God did the rest.
My life has drastically changed since that week in May of 2016, but I can’t say my life now is all rainbows and butterflies. Am I happy? I’m happier. I see things from a different perspective because of what I’ve experienced in the last 18 months. I approach a lot of things differently because the way I approached them before, didn’t work out so well.
I’m learning you are never done learning. I’m not just talking about education. I’m talking about relationships. The relationships you have with your coworkers, your boss, your church, your family, your friends, with your work (in general)–I have to keep adjusting my lens in all those facets based on the experiences I have. It’s one of the hardest things about life, in my opinion. I will not settle or become complacent and maybe I’m setting myself up for failure, for sure disappoint and probably unmet expectations.
The point is this–you always need to be moving forward towards something, baby steps count! Do not become stuck, though it may be comfortable being there–it’s not worth all that comes with being comfortable.