How a simple five minute conversation brought the world at my fingertips.
The other day I had a conversation with someone about the dangers of letting your life go by. We talked about people needing to take responsibility for their life actions, to make things happen without waiting for others to provide the means, and to face the facts once a bad decision has been made. I can't say I don't agree with this. Yet, what struck me and really blew me away, was this person' statement:
"It's just too late now to make a change. It is what it is. That's life."
You know, I said the exact thing years ago. I remember being in my mid twenties, stuck in a corporate America job, pulling boring and meaningless shifts in an office. I yearned to write a novel, to become a published author and create something that truly fueled my soul. I've said the same thing to myself back then, at least a handful of times: I'm too old now to make a change. I didn't go to school for writing. I don't know anyone who is an author and can help me. I just don't know where to begin, so I am stuck here, my life is made up. I'm a struggling single mom, and that's my reality.
Thinking about it now, I laugh. How could I, at the tender age of twenty-something, actually believe my life was stuck in park? Why did I have such a negative outlook on life and making a change? A decade later, I know the answers. Not only that, but talking to this person and hearing them so defeated and resolute about "this is it, I'm too old to make a difference in my life", actually opened up a whole new world to me.
Here's the thing: it's never too late to change your life. Never. NEVER. Do you get that? I don't care if you're 16, 25, 50, or 80! You can make a shift and start living a better life. As long as you're drawing a breath, you are in control. You have the power to shape the very next minute, even if with your thoughts alone...and let me tell you, thoughts are everything! You CAN get out of debt. You CAN change careers. You CAN find the partner of your dreams. You CAN become successful. You CAN live an entirely new life, the one you've always dreamed of. How? Easy.
Just Show Up.
See, it's not about your age or what you've been doing for the past twenty years. That means crap. Your past is important, sure, because it shaped you into who you are, and taught you valuable lessons. But once something is in the past, it's gone. There is no use thinking about the what ifs, the lost opportunities, and the memories. What's truly changeable is the future, the years ahead. That's the time frame you can and will show up for. That's the days and months and years you can still control. Time is a way to put things and people on an invisible map. You are born, you go places, do things, learn things, and they're pegged on this map based on time. But time was never meant to restrain you. All you have to do is show up in the way you want your new life to go. Tomorrow is coming, whether you like it or not. The same routine, troubles, bills, challenges, and work days will be there waiting for you. You can choose to show up just as you have: grunting, rolling your eyes, sighing in frustration, dreading every moment, or resigned to live a life that isn't up to your potential. OR...you can show up armed with hope, new ideas, and a resolution to go back to school, to join a tribe of like minded people, get a gym membership, or write a novel.
Why does it matter if you're starting a new career or pursuing a crazy dream in your late thirties? Who wrote the rule that you must have all your shit figured out by the time you graduate high school? Who said you must have an English degree to publish books? (I don't, and English isn't even my mother language!) All you need to have is the grit and willingness to show up and invest in yourself.
Here's how I showed up in my own life: I was tired of dating losers. I was tired of using the "woe is me, I am a single mom" card. I was frustrated with a job I hated, and decided I had enough. I knew I was meant for more in this world, so even when I could be a stay at home mom (a great blessing once I got married to my wonderful husband, all because I showed up in life and raised my standards in men), I decided to build my career from the ground up and work my ass off. I decided to show up and seek people that were authors. I showed up to the first therapy session, the one I dreaded going to for over sixteen years, because I was afraid of the hard, deep, emotional work I needed to do in order to get better. I showed up to stare my anxiety disorder face to face, refusing to let it run my life anymore. I showed up at every stage, every problem, and every challenge.
Now I am here, and I can tell you this: I have no regrets of "losing time". I don't wish I would've started this life shift sooner. I am at peace knowing that I am at the right place, NOW, and will continue to be because I will show up for it even when I am ninety.
Are you ready to show up for your own life?