Michelle Kennedy Logan of LifeHack writes:
Sometimes in life, we find ourselves at a dead end. Or a crossroads. Or on a path that seems to go nowhere. No matter what stage you are at in life, if you are unhappy with it, or unsure as to how to proceed, then you need to reevaluate.
When I was in high school, I remember thinking that I had to pick a career at which I would be happy for the next 50 or so years of my life. What a daunting task. How do you know what’s going to make you happy for the rest of your life, especially if you’re only 16 and you’re still getting a thrill out of watching “The Breakfast Club?”
You can’t know. You can’t know what’s going to make you happy even five years from now. But you can know what makes you happy now and if you’re current position — or school track — isn’t it, then you need to move on. When my oldest children were contemplating their college careers and job prospects, I often told them to just go and take classes or try things they thought might be interesting and if they didn’t like the class or workshop or whatever, then cross that off your list. Life is often about trying things and realizing what you don’t want to be when you “grow up.”
I spent a year substitute teaching in an effort to see if I wanted to become a public school teacher. I enjoyed that year immensely, but after talking with teachers and doing some of their job for a year, I realized that was a career that was not for me.
You can’t figure out the whole future.
Remember, you don’t know what’s coming next. Life is full of interesting twists and turns, but if we continually pursue things that we enjoy doing whether for a job or hobby, it will make the journey interesting and more fun. Maybe you enjoy making jewelry right now. Maybe you can sell it. In five years, you might be a successful jewelry designer or you might have moved on to another craft. It doesn’t matter. You have the experience of your jewelry design to fall back on and help you with other projects in the future.
Try to be comfortable with discomfort.
Sometimes life is uncomfortable. Sometimes we don’t have enough money to do all of the things we want to do. If you have something you really want to pursue, then you must be able to live with some amount of discomfort in order to do that. For example, I want to mush sled dogs and run the Iditarod. In order to do that, I had to give up my neat, tidy suburban home and move my family to a cabin in Alaska. We don’t have running water or regular electricity and our cabin is much smaller than our old house, but we don’t mind the discomfort of those things because we live in a beautiful place and I get to pursue my dream.
Life is uncertain. Go with it.
Stuff happens. I thought I had it all. I had a great job and a great house in the woods. Then I got fired, lost my house and turned 40 all in the same week. Then I found out I was pregnant. Quite the week. I laid on the couch for a couple of days, depressed, but then we got it together, made a plan and moved to Alaska. Take uncertainty and turn it on its head. Every bad thing is an opportunity to make something good happen.
Overcome distractions. Stop procrastinating.
You’re not getting younger. Sorry, but it’s true. If you don’t start taking the time to pursue your dreams, you might find yourself at the end of your life with nothing to show for it but a lot of Facebook posts and a bunch of TV shows you just had to watch. If you are serious about pursuing a dream — whether it’s designing jewelry, professional skateboarding or being a rich and famous computer guru, you better get on it. Take those first steps. Turn off your Facebook notifications and get working. You won’t get anywhere merely thinking about how great you could be.
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