Do you ever get the feeling that you have outgrown where you are and would like to step into a new chapter of your life; where you can do new things but in a different way to how you have always done things? If that is you then you are not alone – I have been feeling this way some time now and though I must admit that I get bored easily, this feeling is very different from boredom. During my recent trip abroad, I had the chance to stop and simply be – this gave me the opportunity to think about my life and what I wanted out of it. I bet you are thinking “how many times a year does she think about her life and what she wants out of it?” – but please hear me out first, because I am sure I am not the only one. As I grow and evolve, I am beginning to accept that I am not the same person I was and my desires and dreams are constantly changing to fit the person I am becoming. However, for sometime, I felt stuck and I had not unpacked why I felt the way I did – but I finally had a chance to stop and unpack why I was feeling stuck.
Unlike feeling stuck in the past, this time, it felt a bit different – I was telling a friend how I was feeling and I explained that I felt like shedding my old skin, just like a snake or a crab needing a new shell. To be honest we laughed about my examples because if you know me, you would know that I am not very fond of snakes and I am petrified of crabs! But these examples best described how I felt – I felt like I had outgrown this new chapter and I needed to move on. But the moving on aspect of my growth was where I was feeling stuck – you see, unlike the old me I unpacked last year, this current version of myself has clear values, boundaries and alot of patience with myself. So this time, I was not willing to make any rush decisions to escape how I had been feeling – as a matter of fact, I allowed myself to feel and get to the root of things. There was no rush to ignore how I felt for my short term comfort – I wanted to understand what was going on with me so I could make informed decisions going forward.
My first observation was that I had evolved since facing myself last year – I was no longer deflecting or ignoring things; I was living consciously – well most times! I now understood that I would never be the person I was – I had grown into a better version of myself committed to becoming the person I wanted to be. I understood that things don’t always work out the way we wanted and it was ok to go back to the drawing board and try again. I was patient with myself and allowed myself to be comforted when things were not going how I wanted. So looking at why I was feeling the way I was, I realised I had out grown this chapter and though comfortable, I was restless. However, before I could jump into what I felt my new chapter should look like, as I had always done in the past; I decided to look at where this feeling of being stuck was coming from – because it could be that I did not need growth in every area of my life but rather a small area that needed my attention. After having a look at my life, I found that I was growing in several areas -however, I would share three of these areas today and write about the others in the near future;
Feeling like running out of time – Does anyone remember how long a year felt when you were younger? Doesn’t seem to be the case anymore as I get older and I have started feeling like I am running out of time. There are so many things I would like to achieve but I am concentrating mostly on not having time to do these things. I realised this was an area I needed to look at – why was I feeling like I was running out of time? The answer was my mother – you see I lost my mother at a young age and whenever I look at my life, I was looking at it through her life. I had this romanticised idea of what my life would have been like should my mother had lived longer and this was not healthy for me. I understood it was great to hold onto the memories of my mother – my life was mine and there was nothing to indicate that my life would be the same as my mother’s. Besides, my dad is still alive and in his 90’s (he had me later in his life) – and this made me realise that it doesn’t matter when you start something, there is a chance you may not live to see it through but there is also a chance you may live to enjoy what you worked for. Nothing is guaranteed – so I made the decision to always ask myself out loud every time I felt I was running out of time “What if you live for another 50 years?”. This simple question is helping me to over come my existential crisis and enjoy the process of starting new things – it would be great if I see my new projects through for many years but it is also okay if I don’t. The most important thing is that I do it for me and enjoy every step of the process no matter the challenges I may face.
Out growing old connections – Part of growth is that you may need to shed old things in order to make room for the new – one area I found this to be very true was in my connections with other people. There has been someone in my life for a very long time and they recently made a life changing decision I did not agree with fully. As I tried to jump in and rescue this person, I realised that this had been the pattern of our relationship. They make decisions that everyone around could see was bad including this person but they preferred the short term gratification so they went for it anyway and then expected other people to pick up the pieces when it all came crashing down. And for years, I was the one picking up these pieces – so I stopped myself and decided to detach myself from this current decision and allow them to pick up their pieces this time around. Part of growth is learning from our mistakes and I was not allowing this person to grow because I was always there fighting battles that were not mine. I thought this decision would bring me peace and make me happy – but that was not the case, I was grieving and I felt redundant. There was nothing for me to do to rescue this person and this is where I realised I was sabotaging my own need to form meaningful connections! I was playing superhero for other people so I could avoid making connections – because I was afraid. So, I am back to the drawing board on this because I realised this person was not the only one I was giving so much of myself to – there are others and I need to go through the same process with them so I can deal with the issue that makes me want to save everyone while neglecting my need for meaningful connections that will allow someone to be there for me. I will write on this process and update you on how my journey has been – because there is so much to unpack here.
Deconstructing my faith – I have been a christian all my life – I was born into it, went to Sunday school as a child, rebelled a bit as a teenager, immersed myself greatly in church activities as an adult and now I am questioning everything. This is a major part of me and finding that I am questioning something that helped shaped me as person is not a comfortable process at all. Getting to the end of 2019, I started looking at certain practices in my religion again (I had done this around 2016 & 2017 but ignored how I felt) and started researching what the foundation of the religion stood for and I was not comfortable with the new direction things were taking. So I stopped going to church regularly because I was picking things apart every time I was there and things did not make sense anymore. There was a lot of lies being peddled as truth to manipulate people and when I looked around me, I realised most of it was all lies including most of my own beliefs. I found that I wanted to pursue spirituality instead of being in what was now ‘the church’ – I was keen to find a small group of people who gathered to discuss religious texts and found understanding in how that translated into modern living. However, I never found a small group in my town – as things moved online because of Covid-19, I found like minded people like myself questioning their faith and deconstructing doctrines that were used to control instead of to inform and educate. I am currently still on this journey and once again, this is something I would write about in the future as I search for answers within myself and through research. One thing I have come to realise during this journey is to not follow anything or anyone because I had been told to – but to rather question everything and find answers for myself!
There are other areas in my life I found needed looking at – but part of being patient with myself is taking on things I can manage instead of trying to do everything at once. So as I journey, I will be sharing more on what areas I am looking at and how things are going. If this is you and you are feeling stuck and have lost excitement in your life, then look at areas in your life that may need your attention so you can unstuck yourself and grow. We always want to ignore things with the hope that it would resolve itself – however, this is never the case. There is always consequences when things are left for so long without addressing them. So, if you need to look at your job, relationships, beliefs, hobbies, dream and goals – always remember this, you are growing and you do not need to figure everything out at once. Be patient and kind to yourself and remember that even if you do not have answers on how to resolve the issues you may find, part of the solution is identifying the areas that needs attention in the first place!
Thank you so much for always taking the time to read, comment and reach out to me – I really appreciate it. Please continue to get in touch and share your experiences so we can effect the change we need.