You feel stuck. In a job. In a relationship. In a life you didn’t plan and you didn’t choose. You often question what your purpose is, or if there’s more to life than this.
The dreams of the past have been pushed aside for today’s routine. You no longer let yourself wonder what this world can offer. Instead you jump from one obligation to another and just try to make it through the day. You’ve forgotten what it’s like to dream, to ask why, to try new things.
You didn’t even notice your own life spiral out of your control. You woke up one day to see that you’ve been drifting through life as a passenger instead of the driver. To see that routine and responsibility, though necessary, have taken over your life.
Do you remember when you would daydream about what life could be like? Do you remember your dreams and your desires? The things that would light you up and make you feel like the world was full of possibilities?
That world still exists. You’ve just closed your heart, and your eyes, to it. You don’t want to see it because you don’t think you can have it. But you can. It’s not too late.
Realizing where you are is the first step. That moment when you take stock of your life and where you are. You’re truthful with yourself. You don’t like where you are or what you’re doing or who you’re with.
You may be feeling uncomfortable just reading this. Who wants to be uncomfortable? And especially not on purpose. But what’s more uncomfortable, living your whole life and never getting out of it what you really wanted? Or facing a few truths and having a really amazing and fulfilling life?
It’s not easy. It can make you sad. It can fill you with regret. But remember, life’s not over. Even if you’re 82. There’s still time to find the magic. Don’t waste another minute.
The steps that follow that first one can get more uncomfortable, but it’s also where the best things in life happen. It’s a staircase to your real life. The one you were meant to live. The one that you’re afraid to even hope for. You have to lean into that discomfort, to find the magic of life.
Ask Tough Questions
Start by asking where, and who you want to be. In your head or on paper. This can take you hours, days, or months. When you haven’t given much thought to that question in a long time, it can be really hard to know the answer. Sometimes you forget what it is you wanted, or life has changed you so much that you don’t even know what makes you happy anymore.
And there can be a lot of internal struggle in both the asking what you want, and allowing yourself to have it. There are probably a bunch of excuses springing to mind right now. A list of reasons you can’t have the life you want. And they’re probably good reasons.
Things are more complicated now. You have kids, and responsibilities. Others have come to rely on the person you’ve become. Others rely on the income you make, or the parts you signed up to play.
They expect you to be that person that you’ve been being. But ‘they’ aren’t the ones living in your skin. You are. And you’re going to have to get a little uncomfortable for a little while if you want to live an amazing life.
Not Everyone Will Cheer You On
One of the most uncomfortable things to do, is to shake off the expectations that others have for your life. You can feel obligated to continue being someone you don’t want to be, just because it’s what others expect.
And other people will try to make you feel bad. They’ll accuse you of changing. They’ll accuse you of being selfish. They’ll ask you why the life you have isn’t good enough for you. “Why are you too good for us now?”
You have to remember, this is your life. Yours. Not anyone else’s. You’re the one living with the disappointment if you don’t reach your potential. And you’re also the one missing out on doing what you were born to do.
Changing isn’t a bad thing. You should grow, you should change. If a flower stopped growing, it’d be dead. And you have a responsibility to yourself to live your best life. If they want to call that selfish that’s just fine. But somewhere down the line they might figure out what you’re doing and want to do it too. They might want to grow with you.
Would you tell your child to be one person and never change ever for the rest of their lives? Absurd. You’d tell them to be who they want to be. You’d tell them to dream. And if they said “Hey that looks like a better fit for me over there.” You’d say “Go for it. I believe in you.”
Be that parent for yourself. Especially at first when others might not understand why you need this. Why you need to grow, and all the good that can come out of it.
I’d love to say that anyone that loves you isn’t going to prevent you from living your best life. But that’s not true. We are all selfish sometimes. We all have our own best interest at heart, even if we don’t realize it.
Most of the time, others get uncomfortable because of things going on with them, not you. It forces them to take stock of their own lives. It makes them feel like you’re leaving them behind. It makes them angry because they don’t yet want to change or grow. And they want you to stay with them.
They’ll try to hold you back, to prevent that feeling of discomfort. Grow anyway.
And if there are people in your life that don’t want to adjust to changes you’re making, you may have outgrown them or they may not truly have your best interest at heart. That can be uncomfortable too. Coming face to face with the reality that someone you love, doesn’t want to be supportive in what’s best for you. It can hurt.
They might come around when they see the transformation in you. They might feel inspired. Others might not.
Not every person you know has to love you and support you forever. Some people are meant to be close to you for a short period of time and then you both grow in different directions. Goodbye doesn’t have to be a bad thing. It’s a natural thing.
You need to stop trying to hold onto relationships that are holding you back. Even a relationship with a friend you’ve known your whole life or a toxic relationship with your mother. I’m not saying you need to stop speaking to them forever, but allow space there.
It doesn’t need to be your closest relationship. Loyalty doesn’t mean staying in a sinking boat and drowning yourself. Get out of the boat. Swim. You’re holding onto an anvil. And it’s preventing your ship from sailing.
Don’t fight to keep the people you’ve outgrown close. It’s okay to let them go. When you let them go, you’re helping them on their journey too. Maybe you’re holding them back from where they need to go to feel their purpose in life.
You can’t force someone else to go in the same direction as you. The paths may lead away. But who’s to say they won’t meet up ahead? Honor your path by actually walking down it. And don’t be afraid to walk it alone.
New Can Be Uncomfortable
Growing requires you to try new things. So does finding your purpose in this life. You’ll never know what you’re meant to do if you never step into the unknown. In new things we discover who you are and who you’re meant to be.
Trying something new is almost always awkward or weird. You don’t know if you’ll be good at it. You could really suck at it. And it’s really uncomfortable to suck at something. That’s why you probably avoid it. But you’re not doing yourself any favors.
I’ll never forget the first time I went sledding. I didn’t want to go. It’s cold, you fly down a hill really fast and you can get hurt, you have to walk back up that hill after you slide down. Nothing about it sounded worth it to me. But I went. And guess what? It was so much fun!
Now I’m not saying my purpose in this life is to sled down snowy hills. My point here is that you’ll be surprised by the things you enjoy sometimes. You’ll be surprised at the things you’re good at and that really light you up.
Life is full of amazing experiences. And you won’t know which of those light the fire within you if you’re too afraid to fail. Fail away. I’m so proud of you for any failure you’ve had in your life. Because it means you tried. It means you gave it a shot. You stepped into the unknown.
Keep failing. Fail until you find something that you just know, you were meant to do. And that will happen.
What’s Stopping You?
You haven’t changed anything yet. Why is that?
What’s stopping you from living a magical life? A life with purpose that feels alive? A life that feels like you’re making a difference? A life that makes your heart swell and gets you excited to wake up in the morning?
Maybe it’s the part we talked about that has to do with making other people uncomfortable. Or maybe it’s that you’re not sure it can really happen for you. Do you doubt you can feel like that? That life can feel like magic?
It’s possible that you’ve never felt or experienced anything like that. So it may sound like a fairy tale. Like make believe. Like nonsense. But start looking around, there are people out there living those lives. And you’ll see them the instant you decide it might be possible.
Maybe the problem is you don’t think you deserve such a great life. Maybe you think you have to be a Mother Teresa. You have to be worthy. And you haven’t done any great things to earn a life like that.
I’m going to let you in on a little secret. You’ll never do anything great when you’re living in a place you don’t belong. People do amazing things when life feels like magic. When they’ve found that place they have to be, that place they were meant to be. And in that place, that’s where people do amazing things. Living in love is where we give the most love. Living in magic, is where we give the most magic. Having purpose allows others to find purpose.
You deserve a good life. We all do. We all deserve to make the one life we have, the very best it can possibly be. And show others how great life can be.
Writing is my purpose. It’s what my soul has to do. It’s what makes life feel like magic. And when someone tells me my words had an impact on them, it means something to that person. And it means something to me. If my words helped someone in their time of need, is that any less amazing than any other good deed?
My words are my purpose. And because I’m living in that purpose, I can do things for others. I can reach them when they need to be reached, in a way that only I can. You can’t do that from a place you hate, a place you’re sick of, a place you only exist in out of obligation.
Find You. Be You.
Take stock of where you are. Try to figure out where you want to be. Fail. Fail. Fail. Fail a hundred or a thousand times. Fail until you find what it is you’re looking for.
Love the people that will try to hold you back. Love them and let them go when you have to. Or grow together with those that want to.
But you have to go. There’s somewhere you’re supposed to be. Someone out there needs you to be that person. Someone out there is counting on you to use the gifts God gave you. To live your own magic life so they can live theirs.
Get a little uncomfortable. It will be the best thing you ever did for yourself, and for any human being that comes into contact with you after. There’s somewhere you have to be. Go there.
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