We delay taking difficult decisions in the hope that we won't have to make them at all but that rarely happens so what must we do in such a situation? Acceptance is the first step.
Before I quit my day job to turn a full-time Life Coach, I wrestled with the decision for almost a year. Before that year, I spent the previous five not knowing why I was in the job I was in.
I started working in my father’s company at a time when I was going through a very challenging period of my life and felt lost. I did not know what I could or should do for work so when my father offered me a plank to hold on to, I accepted and hoped to survive.
I am beyond grateful for the opportunity but looking back I can say that I did not make the right choice by sticking with it. I was neither passionate about the work I had to do nor did it challenge me.
Instead, I stuck with it for the same reason I’ve seen many people stick it out in jobs and long-term relationships:
How can I just leave? This is what I have chosen to do in life. And what would I do if I leave?
On a majority if not on all of the days I went to work, I wondered why was I there and when would I get to live a life that would make me happy.
If you too find yourself asking this question then let me tell you that it is a SIGN from both your life and the universe to you. It means this:
This is not where you are meant to be. By staying here you are doing a disservice not only to yourself but also to others by making them believe that you want to be here when you clearly do not.
I am a Life Coach now and a situation I commonly encounter while working with people is one in which they need to do something intimidating and are unable to proceed. This is what most say:
"But it’s difficult."
They say it not as a question (it’s difficult and I don’t know how to do it) but as a statement (it is difficult and I don’t think I can do it).
The human mind is a clever and manipulative device. Once it becomes used to being a certain way, even if it’s miserable, it keeps us there and makes us believe that we don’t have a way out.
Often it goes to the extent of making us think, "If I do this, I will hurt them (partner/family/friend/a boss who trusted you/someone you don’t wish to disappoint)."
When we think like this, we conveniently place the responsibility of our life on someone else’s shoulders and view ourselves as a victim, one who is incapable of making a choice because we care too much about other people’s feelings.
However, this is far from the truth. The truth is we are TOO SCARED to accept our reality and take a step to change it.
But the knowledge that we are unhappy and hope to live a different life keeps poking our heart and mind and there comes a day when it becomes impossible to continue living the lie we have been. That day we break the hearts of those we tried too hard to protect.
Thus, this is what I suggest you do if you find yourself in the shoes I was in:
Find the courage within you to own up to the truth both to yourself and those that you care about NOW.
Break their heart now instead of inflicting more pain on them because you can’t face your fears. You owe them honesty if you love and respect them.
And you owe yourself a life you want to live, not run away from.
Making tough choices will always be tough. There’s nothing I can say that will make it easy for you.
However, once you accept in front of yourself that you want to make a change and need courage to do it, the same mind that was previously playing tricks on you begins to work to help you build the courage needed to make the leap of faith.
It takes time but it comes. The first step is ACCEPTANCE that you are unhappy and wish to chart a new life course for yourself.
Steve Jobs said in his commencement speech at Stanford:
"I tell myself that if I live every day like it is my last, one day it surely will be. And when I wake up for more than 30 days in a row feeling unhappy with my life, I know something needs to change."
You always know in your heart when you’re living a life you don’t wish to. Why put yourself through such suffering? Don’t act like a martyr and pretend to do it for others. That is BS* you tell yourself when you’re afraid to make a difficult life decision.
Wake up, show 60 seconds of courage and say it out loud. Have faith in yourself, and make the decision your heart is aching to because a better life is waiting out there for you. However, it will not walk up to you. You will have to walk towards it to catch up with it. Godspeed.:)