It has been a month since I left the corporate world. Knowing I never have to work for anyone else again is an amazing feeling and I am very blessed. Personal freedom is priceless. Each day I become more and more of my authentic self and it feels so liberating. Some of my friends are truly happy for me, and others think I’m just lucky. It is another chapter in my life where I am able to find out who my true friends really are, although the quantity is reduced, the quality of my friendships is something I cherish.
I’ve had many friends ask me if I really am as happy as I say I am, am I really as happy as I appear to be? My answer is yes, my answer is always yes when it comes to this question. I was that cheerful co-worker that you see on Monday mornings at 5am who is bright eyed and bushy tailed. The same one you work hard to ignore because “seriously, it’s Monday morning, 5am and this bitch is happy” lol. It’s okay, I’m usually forgiven by lunch time. My mom summed it up pretty well, “she was always up at the crack of dawn with a smile on her face, anticipation in her heart and a drive to just get going, and go and go and go”. To this day I would rather be warmed outside by the sun, with coffee in hand, slowly waking up, than sleeping in. Remember the old song Feelin Groovy? Well that was dedicated to me by my mom based on the line “slow down you move too fast, got to make the morning last, skipping down the cobblestones, feeling groovy”. Yes that is me. Feeling groovy. Always. Except I seem to always be “Tripping” vs “Skipping” down the cobblestones (I’m kind of clumsy lol) But life has a way of changing that happy state of mind for many of us.
So, here is the reader’s digest version. I grew up, had the same boyfriend from 17 until I married him at 25, it was an abusive relationship and always had been. There were drugs involved, always had been. I had a baby at 26, got divorced at 28, hooked up again at 29, another abusive relationship (history will repeat itself if you do not learn the first time). Finally at the age of 40 I moved out with my daughter, on my own, for the very first time in my life. We got an apartment in town, and it was constantly full of her friends. I had a lot of making up to do. Until then I had never lived on my own, I had worked hard since my divorce trying to secure a better life for me and my daughter. I believed that I would not be able to provide well enough for both of us as a single mom (I was not going to do section 8, and I was not going to live in certain school districts, and I was not going to continue living with my mom). I was so focused on what I wanted I never took into consideration what I didn’t want. I was driven to have a secure life for my daugher and because of that the relationship with my daughter suffered greatly, it had evolved into one based on tremendous guilt, rebellion and hostility for the both of us.
By the time I turned 43 things started to look up, I was able to purchase a beautiful condo. My father passed away a few years earlier and it was his passing that enabled me to purchase my condo, I closed escrow and had the keys in my hand on his birthday. My daughter and I worked hard with the help of others to repair our relationship, I begged for forgiveness for not being the kind of mother she wanted, and for not being there. I could see how my actions and drive had alienated her, even though she was the one I was working so hard for. Today we are closer than ever.
At 45 I found true love from a man who protects my vulnerabilities and loves me just one atom more than I love him. My life started to get comfortable again, but this time it was different, I felt like I was in control of my life, I was living life on my terms. Almost………………lol But when I turned 47 after working for the same company for 12 years I quit my job. The Company was going thru Chapter 11 and I was not going to wait around to see what was going to happen to me so I networked and networked and found another job in the same industry, a cut in pay, but a secure job. Thirty days later I got fired, why? I was just not a good fit! Unbelievable, I just left a job making great money, after working for them for 12 years, what was I thinking! That same day I joined one of my girlfriends in very successful brand new direct selling company (she introduced me to them while the company I was working for was going thru Chapter 11) six months after that I found another job in the same industry, again, while simultaneously working my new direct sales business. A year later I had an opportunity to go back to work for my original employer of 12 years so I quit and went to work for them and got very very comfortable, too comfortable. I was collecting a healthy paycheck, more than I had originally, but I was doing work with absolutely no meaning, the pay was great, but the work was hollow. Then I had an opportunity to work for a non profit, which was on my bucket list, and after 3 months I was fired for refusing to hug my boss (long story) talk about a get out of jail free card. That was the moment when I knew that I was never going back to work for anyone else ever again.
I found my passion when I started my business, it did not happen overnight, believe me it has taken a lot of personal development and growth, but while my life was in turmoil during the last couple of years I was able to create an exit strategy. I worked my business part time in order to create residual income that would eventually allow me to leave the corporate world when the time was right. I did not know the timing was right until I was fired, and everything fell into place.
I started to think about how I had come this far. I asked myself if it felt like I fought to get here, and the answer was no. I have lived thru and have encountered obstacles, challenges, heartbreaks, financial setbacks (on a regular basis) etc.etc. I have worked for the County, in the food industry, retail industry and automotive repair industry. I worked in a warehouse and loaded lamps on to service trucks, I was a project manager for a custom sign company, I have worked in manufacturing, construction, and even the non profit arena. I have always done what it takes to make a better life for me and my daughter. I am always looking out for the next opportunity, I have never looked back, and I have no regrets. For the most part my outlook has always been positive, I have always been happy.
So how did I get here? I thought about it some more and I discovered that I have been working my entire life on creating an environment to exist “happily”, to live “happily ever after”. There are people who would say there is no such thing but I am here to tell you that there is. You can create your destiny, and you can create your happiness. I discovered 12 habits that I use in my life everyday, in fact I just came to the realization as I look back thru my life, that understanding who I am has allowed me to, even as a kid, develop these habits. Not sure when it started, it may have started on the playground when I was the last one picked for a team because I was so uncoordinated and clumsy, or it may have started when I was made fun of all thru elementary and Junior High School because I was different than everyone else. Or maybe it started when I was told “you can’t do that”. In any event the trials, tribulations, and setbacks from growing up have molded me into the woman I am today, have helped me raise my beautiful daughter, and have driven me to be successful in creating an environment for me to live and succeed in.
I drill down until I understand what I really want from the good of my heart, what I expect to receive, and to recognize what I’ve already been blessed with. I ask that His work be done thru me and to show me how my prayers affect others. Then I brave his decision, I sit still and watch for the sign I’m given and I become silent in order to hear Him.
- I do not accept no for an answer, ever
I used get into a lot of trouble, at home and in school for sticking to this one. Lol, but it was from determination, not misbehavin. Of course that point of view did not help the teacher, but it certainly helped me get through it. Lol. If I am truly intent in accomplishing my goal(s) accepting no for an answer will defeat me. I will figure out a way to make it happen, maybe not right now, maybe not even in a few months or years. I may have to pull back and re-evaluate, but I will press on until I accomplish my goal. The goal never changes, just the time.
- I do not allow myself to get comfortable,
When I was younger, sometimes, at 2am, I would bolt out of bed and rearrange my room. I could not go back to sleep until it was done. I was constantly changing my environment. Today I implement ways to challenge myself. I set my goals and intentions in order to create change in my environment. I have a goal about the way I want to end my days, what I want to be remembered for, how I want to leave my loved ones. Each time I accomplish one goal on my journey I am perfectly prepared for the next goal by collectively taking what I have learned and using it like jet fuel to propel me onto the next, creating the environment I need to succeed.
- It will always be better than worse
No matter how bad things get, they will always get better. I don’t believe things get worse, I believe I am being challenged and tested by God. It’s like mid terms or finals, I’ve done my studies, I have the tools to push thru, I will ace the exam, and if I don’t I have learned. Trust in the tools God gave you and continues to give you. He will not fail you.
- If I can do this then I most certainly can do that
I constantly look for ways to apply skills that will allow me to learn other skills which intern helps me achieve my goals.
- I don’t ask for permission
You can refer to number 2 for the drive behind this one. Lol. Once I am set, laser focused, Eagle eyed, on target, I move forward immediately, I throw myself into action. I do not second guess my decision. I got into big trouble for this growing up, but my determination out weighed everything else.
Often times I am quick to act, the phrase “the early bird catches the worm” applies to me. I hit the ground with my feet running. I forget to take others into consideration when I am moving on my goal, and sometimes I hurt the ones I love most. When that happens I beg for their forgiveness, and I ask them for more patience. Yes, I push the envelope, refer to numbers 2 and 6, lol I will still stay my course. What I am doing is for my family, and my grandchildren. They love me, support me and believe in me, even when they don’t, they do.
- I never repeat the same mistake twice, I fail forward
Unless it comes to breaking glassware, I diligently work hard to never make the same mistake twice. Sometimes I’m overcome and my emotions get the best of me, and that’s okay. I own my decisions, and I can forgive myself for the wrong ones, after all God forgives me, I can forgive myself.
- I daydream no matter what
I allow myself to daydream. Even if it’s for 5 minutes before I get out of bed, I let my mind go, I dream about how I would like my day to go, or where I would like to go on vacation, even finding a million dollars and wondering what I’d do with it. And sometimes, more often than not, one of those dreams comes true. Manifesting your destiny, certainly has a nice ring to it doesn’t it?
- I always believe in myself no matter what, even when I don’t.
If at first I don’t succeed I will try again, I know I can do it. I may need to re evaluate the situation, I may need additional skills, but I know I can try again, and I know I will succeed. I believe in me. After all God does, why shouldn’t I?
- I take the time to figure out me, my authentic self, I clean out the nooks and crannies of my mind.
Self reflection, self development, self work, is so important. A healthier mindset allows me to maintain a steady course as I navigate the uncharted waters of my life. If I am not of a healthy mind set healthy, my family is not mind set healthy, my friends are not mind set healthy. The people I surround myself with are attracted to a healthy mindset, they are attracted to a mindset like theirs.
- I give thanks to God for what I have and I remember to thank him for what I don’t have
I met a lady, she said a prayer it contained the line “thank you father God for what We don’t have”. What a great line! I remember to thank God for what I don’t have, there is a reason I don’t have “it,that, or the other”.
All of us are born happy, we become un-happy. Happiness needs to be nurtured, it needs to be fed. Just like our belly needs to be fed in order to keep our bodies fed, our happiness needs to be fed in order to keep our soul fed. Happiness cannot be taken for granted, it is worked for just like everything else you work for, including un-happiness. This type of focus took me out of the bullshit of life allowing me to live my life on my terms which has led me to the greatest gift of all so far and that is to be out of the workforce by 50 years old, creating a business that allows me to do work with real meaning, and help others do the same while providing residual income so I can sleep better at night knowing I am not going to run out of money during my retirement years, and it’s only going to get better. This is a direct result of my mindset, and my faith. God puts hidden riches in secret places, and I know this to be true first hand.
I am willing to bet that many of you are doing the same thing, but maybe you are growing tired, waiting for yours. Don’t give up, keep going no matter how futile it may seem. God has already blessed you, so why not live up to that blessing?