About once a week I have a client in my office who feels “stuck” in their life. They hate their job, their relationship is in trouble, they feel like they “should feel happy” but they don’t. Some even express interest in doing what I do because it sounds like fun. It is by the way, but I will say it took a long time for my business to start paying the bills.
These same people often express that they are considering some drastic thing in order to feel differently. Divorce, quitting their job without a replacement, joining the circus (yes, I did have a client who considered that).
While I love the enthusiasm for making radical change to an unhappy life, I think it’s a bit of “throwing out the baby with the bathwater.”
Instead of seeing discontentment as a sign you need to drop everything and make a radical change, it’s time to see it as a sign you need to explore radical changes to your life that you make later. It’s time to be a bit of an explorer, visiting schools to look into retraining for a new career, visiting meetup groups to make new friends so you don’t feel so lonely or that you need your life partner to provide more than they are able to give.
Rather than just giving up, see these urges to abandon ship for what they are, your unconscious mind saying, “This is no longer working for me. What can I do differently?”
Allow the miserable job you have now to be the bill payer while you do what you need to do in order to make a radical change, like choosing a new occupation. Maybe you will need some schooling. If it’s a new business, it’s probably going to take some time for that to grow to a point where you don’t need that paycheck. Allow your current life to support you while you build a bridge to the next thing.
I have seen plenty of people regret doing a “take this job and shove it” approach before they had something new formed. Many even found themselves going back to the old thing in defeat.
I started my business because I was angry about not being able to take a week off that I needed to grieve when a friend died. Because “he wasn’t family,” I had to go back to work the next day. I never wanted someone else to have that much control of my schedule ever again. I already was a hypnotherapist, but I hadn’t been doing it for money. I started off two evenings a week using a psychotherapist’s office on days when she had yoga class and my business grew from there, eventually to the point where it supports me. But that didn’t happen overnight, and I am very grateful for the bill payers (the jobs) I had while it grew that kept me in a new car every few years and not having to worry about making rent because that extra pressure would have made it really hard for me to put in the energy and love it took to make my business grow.
I wish that for all of you. Right now, if you are feeling stuck it’s time to go exploring even if it’s just to a museum, looking at new schools, or whatever else makes you happy. Find a way to make your dreams possible in a way that won’t keep you up at night with worry. Love yourself enough to do what it takes to create a happy, more fulfilled life. I am very glad I did.
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