Last year was a complete focus on being comfortably uncomfortable. Pushing myself in new directions and to new levels. I fully dove into the social media world to share my love of essential oils. I applied for a rotation in my current job doing something I had never done before.
And guess what? It was great, spectacular in fact. Not that it was easy, not that I didn’t spend 30 minuted persuading myself to “go live,” and not that there weren’t days that I felt like a complete fake. I felt so out of my element, that at times I didn’t feel like me and what I was doing felt forced. But after those moments I felt so proud and so excited that I had conquered one step towards my new goals.
Instagram is where I felt the most like this. I took an online class to learn how to attract followers and build networking relationships. They suggested using a lot of white backgrounds and to create photos of the life that people want. After all, they aren’t there to see you, but rather what you have to offer them. I struggled with this quite a bit. I wanted my Instastory to reflect me and what I believed in. I want people to be ok with having a bad day, swearing, or thinking that sometimes your kids are little shits and you want to cry.
I would watch my peers and notice how they posted, how they worded things, and knew in my heart, that’s not me. I’m not sure why this became such a hang up for me. Maybe it goes back to that idea of wanting to fit in, but knowing your still a duck. Or maybe it was hitting on something more intrinsic. Perhaps there was a part of me that was wanting to be more spiritual or look more put together and Instagram was bringing that to light.
It got easier. I started to find my way, make my own path and start to pick up followers. It’s exciting to know that someone out there reads my blog posts or likes a photo. It’s been really fun to see which posts created the most engagement. And guess what, so far it hasn’t been those perfect photos. It’s the goofy ones, my dog, my family.
As fall approached I had the opportunity to apply for a full-time position from my rotation at “my real job.” It was devastating when I didn’t get it and even more so because it was a case where someone was just a little more qualified, not that I had done anything wrong or even lacked the needed skills for the job. This person had just a little more. I found that it would have been easier to know I messed up rather than someone just had a little more of X.
My rotation continued for a few months after I had been turned down for the full-time spot. I watched someone else come in and start the job I so desperately wanted. I continued to build relationships with team, and work hard, hoping that another chance may be coming up. Sadly, no other positions opened.
The last few months of the rotation were some of the hardest months I’ve had in a long time. I was an emotional mess and would break down crying at the drop of a hat. There were many times I would get in my car and tears would start pouring. More than anything though, I was perplexed as to why I was so upset. I’d been turned down for positions before, even within my current company. I understood their logic and hadn’t taken the interview process for granted that I was a shoo-in.
Perhaps, it went back to me having always felt like I was #2, instead of being number 1. I reminisced my life. I almost won the swim race, I almost got first place at the state fair, I almost get the job, I almost won the competition, I almost…fill in the blank. My mojo has been off my entire life. Something inside of me has been holding me back and keeping me from that next step when the golden nugget was right there for the taking. Did I not feel worthy? Was I afraid of failure? I’m not sure.
After my rotation ended and the kick off of the holiday season was among us, I kind of shut down. Not only was work a mess, but my son started his senior year. With Nolan graduating and my 40th peaking around the corner, it seems that l2018 was the start of a big new phase in life for me.
I’m an introvert by nature and after the last few months I knew I had to take care of me. I was angry, emotional, and completely displaced. I couldn’t worry about my followers, my job, or even my family to a certain degree. I had to take a step back. Breathe. Relax. Listen to my soul to find my next move.
I wish I could say it was easy and I was back at it after a couple weeks, but I actually needed a few months…almost a season to get back. What I’m realizing now is that I will never be that old me again. I pushed myself so hard last year that I had succeeded in becoming comfortably uncomfortable. I had grown personally and professionally. What I didn’t expect to come out of it was learning about my personal demons holding me back from what I wanted in life.
This year, I’m facing those demons. I’m not going to worry about a certain path. I’m going to do what I want and see where it leads me. Maybe it will be on the same path with a different vigor, or maybe I will be finding a new way in the dark.