Remember that question that people always asked when you were little? What do you want to be when you grow up? As a kid, you probably had an answer. Of course it changed a dozen times by the time you did grow up, and you didn’t really end up being a fireman. And then there’s the over-asked question you see everywhere on the internet : “what would you do if you knew you wouldn’t fail?” Maybe it’s just me, but I think that question makes a lot of people roll their eyes. Because … of course we’re going to fail. A lot. That is, if we’re really going to do something or become something. Failing is how we learn. To think we won’t fail is the Disney version, not reality. Let’s leave that question out of the mix!
I know it seems like this is another post about the same thing. It is. Why? Because I want to keep reminding you that your LIFE is a huge deal! Answering the big life questions is a project that takes time! It’s how you’re going to get from where you are to where you want to be, which is what transition is all about. So … we’ll continue to talk about it because it’s not the kind of thing that you sit down and think about for a day and gain resolution. There are a thousand books written on the subject and you can read every one of them and still not be any closer to having answers. Ultimately, you’re going to get to hunker down and do the work that most of us were unprepared to do.
Why are we so unprepared? Because your life has not presented opportunities and the space to spend any time thinking about it. Because nobody told you that transition could be so uncomfortable. Because transition involves self awareness about feelings. It’s challenging, deep, sometimes exhausting work. It can be really hard to be willing to stay in that place long enough to get to your answers. Taking action is SO much easier, but there is little to be gained by taking action if you don’t know where you want to go.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the big questions and find yourself wanting to crawl under the covers and say “never mind”, try starting with smaller questions. Baby steps. For example:
If I waved a magic wand and granted you 4 extra hours today, totally yours to do whatever you wanted, what would you do?
If I gave you a permission slip today (it’s Monday) to take the rest of the week off, what would you choose to do?
I want you to advocate for yourself. Validate yourself. Listen to yourself. Do the work. Stop waiting for someone else to do it! You have a voice. This time in your life is about discovering that voice and determining what you want to use it for. Challenge yourself to think about how you are going to engage with life. Your life! It’s pretty exciting work, don’t you think? And remember – you’re going to create your own version of Life Beyond Kids, starting right now!
Your biggest fan,
Image: Sunrise on the Serengeti. Taken during a safari, post-Kilimanjaro climb. My version of answering big life questions, one step at a time.