Today was a BIG day.
It started off unassuming like most other weekdays and didn’t show any signs of changing, but then, just like those times when a massive thunderstorm sweeps across the sky out of nowhere, it did.
I spent the majority of the day curled up in bed, on my bed, on the couch, then back on my bed, neatly propped up with my laptop and several cups of tea, as today was one of those days where a thunderstorm and torrential rain swept across the Sydney skyline.
As much as I’m an adoring lover of the sunshine, today I didn’t mind so much as it meant I felt less guilty about staying indoors all day to work on creative business projects. Plus, it meant I got to watch one of my all time favourite tennis players, Rafael Nadal, play for a spot in the semi finals of the Australian Open tournament.
But then he lost.
Nadal, first name Rafael. 14-time grand slam winner. The Spanish stallion, who has floored the masses over the years with his undeniable, world-class tennis skills – defeated – in the quarterfinals!
I couldn’t believe it but also knew my eyes hadn’t deceived me. After sparing a few thoughts for him and comforting myself (in case you were wondering, yes, I’m a hardcore tennis fan), I pulled myself together and carried on with my day.
A couple hours later, after plugging away with more of my business ventures, the day delivered bigger news.
My older sister and her partner were officially approved for their first house purchase!
They have been on the hunt for the ‘perfect’ house for as long as I can remember, battling the competitive and overcrowded market, so naturally I was thrilled when I heard the news; new beginnings for them and their beautiful budding family.
Yet as soon as I found out the news and a ‘congratulations’ passed through my lips, I felt it.
That thick lump etched in the back my throat, those swirling tears brewing beneath the surface, feelings of sadness imprinted on my heart.
Was I genuinely happy and excited for my sister? Of course. No doubt about that.
So why did I suddenly feel like crying and experience an unexpected plummet in my emotions?
It didn’t take much contemplating or soul searching to figure out why, in fact I almost instantaneously knew where my mixed feelings were coming from.
Recently I’d had conversations with friends and listened to clients talking about very similar circumstances, not to mention the internal dialogue that had already played out in my mind about the unfolding of life’s ‘big milestones’.
Late last year I vividly remember going through periods of time, albeit brief ones, where it felt like everyone and everything around me was morphing into something else, something bigger and better, moving in all kinds of directions; changing life as I knew it, forever.
Yet from where I stood at the time, I felt as though my feet were imprinted on the earth as thick as cement and as heavy as lead, whilst everyone around me was forging ahead with their lives, doing something ‘significant’.
First homes or investment properties were being purchased, holidays were being booked, road trips mapped out; babies being announced or born; news of engagements or work promotions, yet none of the celebrations were reserved for me. The news wasn’t mine to share.
For brief respites of time, I indulged in thinking my life wasn’t moving forward, changing, or growing like everyone else’s.
The truth is, it wasn’t; it isn’t.
I don’t want my life to look like everyone else’s or be a cookie cutter blueprint of other people’s.
I’m not a stage of my life where I feel ready or desire to make those big commitments (well, apart from the holiday or road trip, there’s always room for those), and I know I’m nowhere near ready for babies or houses; commitments that dramatically shift and shape one’s life in the most permanent of ways.
Whilst the feelings I’ve had when presented with other people’s BIG news haven’t been ones of jealousy, resentment or regret; they’ve simply made me look at my own life and circumstances.
They’ve made me question why I felt those little prickles of sadness or inadequacy when grand plans were announced.
It’s as though I’m standing in front of one giant mirror having my whole life reflected back at me, showcasing my every move or lack thereof; choices I’ve made, ones I’m yet to select or haven’t been privileged to make as of yet.
An honest and heartfelt chat I had with a friend recently, gratefully left me feeling uplifted, assured, and experience greater clarity and peace about all of this.
I realised these contemplations and doubts I had about my own life, were nothing more than fear dressed up to the nines as something else.
My sister announcing the purchase of her first home represented another one of my family members moving further away; life as I knew it was about to change yet again.
Fear reared its ugly head the moment I found out.
‘Will I see them less and miss out on sharing experiences with them?
Will I not be a big part of my nephew’s lives?’
‘Will my relationship with my sister be different now?’
Family members buying houses, friends having babies or entering into new relationships all stirred up similar fear-based questions:
‘Does this mean everything is going to change now?’
‘Will I be left behind?’
‘Am I creating or doing anything worthwhile?’
‘Am I simply biding my time?’
‘Am I being a responsible adult?’
My negative ego was having a field day conjuring all these colourful and creative fear based questions, when my Higher Self (the only voice that truly matters), stepped in to offer a gentle but firm ‘counter-offer’ and sage words of advice:
‘Change comes in many forms. You may not be following in the footsteps of others or living life according to what the social ‘norm’ is, but you are blazing ahead leaving a trail of your own kind of magic.
You’re challenging the status quo not to be rebellious or smite, but because you are following your heart and doing what you know to be true for you.
Follow this path and it will guide you home.’
And just like that, whilst those initial questions may have felt valid and appropriate at the time, I realised they were purely coming from a place of fear, not from truth; love.
+ Fear that my own life wasn’t changing.
+ Fear that I wasn’t doing anything significant of ‘life-changing.’
+ Fear that I was a failure and not achieving anything.
But what I’ve come to learn is this:
When fear rears its ugly head, take note. Fear usually means we’re onto something big.
When you see fear, follow it. When you feel fear, smell it, taste it, embrace it – it means there’s something to lose, something even bigger to gain.
I’ve never been one to daydream about having multiple screaming babies in the house, walk down the aisle at a certain age or renovate houses in my spare time, yet sometimes it’s so damn easy to get caught up in what everyone else is doing, even when that’s not what we want for ourselves, at least not at the present moment in time.
Whilst I may not be having babies or purchasing houses (yet), I am still moving forward, growing and making significant changes in my own beautiful, bold and unruly way.
The truth is:
+ I’m not creating babies; I am creating change in my own life and in my client’s lives through the culmination of chasing after and living out my heart’s desires.
+ I’m not writing my signature on papers for house purchases; I am writing powerful and profound eBooks.
+ I’m not investing in early retirement funds; I’m investing in myself every-single-day, to grow, to develop, to shine.
+ I’m not falling in love with another human being just yet; I’m basking in my own love, entering into a lifelong love affair with myself, learning about what lights me up, what works for me, what doesn’t. When that time comes to give my heart to another again, man will I be ready.
+ I’m not changing locations, moving interstate or moving houses; I’m moving towards my goals, day-by-day, step by step, pillar to pillar. I’m consciously observing my state of mind and tidying up my inner ‘home.’
More often than not, we allow ourselves to become demoralized by what everyone else is doing instead of focusing on what magic already exists and is being created in our own lives.
We forget that what ‘everyone’ else is doing may not be for us.
We become so attached to outcomes and end goals that we seldom take time to enjoy the actual journey.
We unconsciously allow fear to become the seductive snake that slithers into our bed that hisses at and provokes us, making us tremble and paralysed with ‘what ifs.’
But what if we consciously allowed fear to be our guiding light, to let it be the very thing that leads us directly to our dreams rather than shy away from it?
Even snakes whilst potentially threatening, have their place and purpose in the world too.