We never plan for the days where our thoughts wander towards that untouchable place in our minds full of the should’s, would’s, could’s and the infamous question: “what are you doing with your life?” But it happens and it’d be foolish of us to ignore the incidents.
I’m a firm believer in shifting your thoughts to a more positive place when that happens, thinking of positive mantras, exploring what makes you happy, etc. Buuuuut I also believe in acknowledging the questioning & looking into where they really come from. For all the times that I’ve had this thought over the years, I know it comes from my insecurity of thinking that I’m not living life “as I should.”
Why was I dwelling on this thought all of a sudden? Well…two years ago on the day, I graduated with a Masters in Counseling! Fucking insane but amazing. I’m really proud of myself for doing the work then, but coincidentally I’m not doing the work now. After graduation I decided to step away from counseling and work for an amazing brand that supports happiness, gratitude, positivity, and life goals. I work with the funniest people who I call friends 5 days a week; it’s basically a play day all the time. I’m grateful all the time that this has been my life for the last 2 years; I LOVE my life it’s ridiculous how good it is. I’m significantly happier than I was when I was counseling, but it isn’t a fool proof shield from negative thoughts. I still sometimes think I should be a “professional” and use my degree. I spent all the money, accumulated student loans, and put it a good two and a half years of my life into it. If that’s the story, then why shouldn’t I just be an adult and be a counselor?
My incessant thoughts led me to look for counseling jobs at various hospitals and treatment centers and talk with friends who are currently working in the field. I dabbled with the idea of life outside my current role, just so that I could do what I thought was “right.” At this point, I’d also let in all the thoughts telling me that I won’t be a successful coach, therapists don’t like coaches, and that I’m silly for thinking I could do this successfully. Clearly I was not in the best head space…
BUT here are the COOL things that I got from that introspection…first, I noticed that I was dwelling on this issue HARD so I consciously took a break from the thinking and ran my errands. That’s normally really difficult for me to do because I mull over things to the point of no return. That little win itself meant so much to me; it was a huge shift for me in my daily thought routine and I was so proud of myself! Also, I realized that I just want to help people! How shocking, right?? I want to be a mentor to others, be able to coach individuals who have similar questions, support people on their BIG goals, shine light on the darker days, and share positivity & happiness with everyone I can. At the end of the day, this is MY story and I can do whatever I want. And if I’m doing what I want (which is to help and inspire others), then that’s all that matters. It’s okay to let go of the story that someone else created for me when I was little about what’s right and wrong to do in my life; it’s okay to re-write the rules and do what makes me happy in life. It’s okay for me, and it’s okay for you.
I know that this probably won’t be the last time I have that sort of thought creep into my head, but I’m confident that I can bring myself back to the root of it all and know that my core value is to help others. However that plays out, no matter my professional path, if that’s the root of my actions day to day then I’m happy.
Let’s make it all about the wants, and none of the shoulds.