The Magic of Beginnings
Do you know how in the beginning of a relationship or resolution, you feel alive! You feel like everything is possible, and happiness is finally at your fingertips.
Well, this was not that kind of beginning.
This beginning started with a series of endings. The end of a decade-long career; the end of the honeymoon period in my relationship; and the end of a well established identity as a working super-mom. This beginning was painful, messy, exhausting, and humbling. And after a year of resisting, it was curiosity that finally opened the door to my true beginning.
I was devastated; I was quite satisfied with my life and was not ready to be evicted. I lamented all of the things that I lost and the parts of myself that I thought were gone. And then my partner reminded me of something: I used to be pretty miserable. To be clear, my life was not miserable, but the way that I was living it was. I had established very defined roles for myself, and exhausted myself to meet the internal expectations of those roles. So while I was successful, impactful, and accomplished, I was also stressed, frustrated, and trapped in a routine that left me empty.
However, while all of that was true, I was an expert at that life and was terrified at the prospect of creating a new one. This push and pull between the fight against and need for change went on until I decided to focus on my curiosity. As a strategist, I had built a successful career around investigating problems and systematically working through solutions. So I decided to take a strategic look at my life and asked myself: What are you so afraid of?
I asked: What was the problem with how I lived my life? What was it that I needed out of life? What was my vision for my best life? When did I feel most alive, and when did I feel depleted? Each time I began to feel the pangs of distress about my career, my relationship, or my role as a parent, I met that distress with curiosity. Instead of pushing away the pain, fear, and discomfort, I began to explore it and listen to what it had to teach me.
In the months that followed, I learned a lot about myself and began the work of crafting a new life that centered around my joy, passion, and promise. And while change can still feel scary at times, I have learned to lean on my curiosity and trust the magic of beginnings.
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