I’ve been playing around with this idea for a few weeks now and the right push has entered my life to write this. We brought home a 4 month old puppy!! His name is Milo and he is a husky, german shepherd mix! For a while now, Eric and I had been talking about getting another dog but it was just up in the air. Even though I felt like we were not quite ready, the right opportunity came knocking.
I gotta tell you I love me a good opportunity! I’m a reserved person and my first response used to be NO to anything new! But now I’ve learned that all opportunities offer you a life lesson and your attitude determines just how painful it will be. Even if you decline an opportunity there is still something to learn, if you take the time to reflect on it.
This all started for me when I was about 18 years old and I decided to go to an out of state private university (yes, it was as expensive as it sounds). This decision is what lead me to making the best ones of my life. When I decided to go out of state I was not in the right mindset. Besides my parents telling me not to go I didn’t have anyone guiding me through this process. Like most 18 year olds I was eager to move out and go my own way. The day I knew this wasn’t the right path for me was the moment I stepped onto the airport. I felt a heavy weight on my chest. It took me every ounce of willpower to keep going. After all, I had just signed my life away with a student loan.
I told myself I had to get through the year and boy was it a rocky one. My relationship with my parents was non existent. Eric and I were constantly arguing and I was failing classes. It seemed like everything important to me was falling apart–most likely because I felt like I was. Those couple of years gave me so many lessons that I wouldn’t trade for anything. I pushed through many comfort zones. I learned how to make a decision not based on fear or lack of information but because it aligned with my life goals. When I decided to quit college I took a couple of weeks to figure out what I wanted to do. It was not an easy decision and I knew my family would not understand if I decided not to go back. I was 19 years old and I felt like I had no direction, no passion or real life goals. The only thing I knew was that I was unhappy and depressed. I knew going back to school would absolutely break me. I wanted to be happy and find my purpose and college was not where I was going to find it. This is when it all took off. I look back now and deciding to go my own way has paid off in such a big way! I love the person I have become and I am excited for all the growing I still have to do.
In every opportunity there WILL ALWAYS be a risk. It’s just up to you to decide if it’s worth paying if things go sideways. Personally, I do not like making a decision based on my fears and limitations. So, one of the questions I ask myself is, is this going to help me push through a fear? If the answer is yes, I start to envision how this opportunity will help my life, not complicate it. It’s so easy to go straight into the mentality that we don’t have time, that it’s going to be too hard, or even too big of a sacrifice. Don’t let it be about your limited beliefs or your capabilities, base your decisions on your future self. Limited beliefs can be broken and grown out of, as for your capabilities–we can learn anything new when we apply ourselves. These excuses do us no good when it comes to making decisions. Information and belief can be gained along the way. So, make your decisions based on your future self. Where is your future self going to be? How will your future self handle this opportunity? How does your future self talk, walk, dress and so on? Base the decision on who you want to be, not who you are. The person you are now has gotten you to this point, let your future self guide you.
Big and small opportunities still make changes, they move you forward in a certain direction. We won’t always know the outcome of a decision but, we can be prepared and take advantage of the experience. The worst thing we can do is not learn from a lesson–the struggle, the heartache–it all goes to waste.
A few months after we moved to San Diego, I unexpectedly got a job offer and I was thrown off by it. I wasn’t looking for a job and although the job title is pretty easy, working in the industry is not. My initial response was defensive and I was uncertain about the job. I was scared that I would experience the same complications as I did at my last job and I also didn’t want to sacrifice my time. Everything was being handed to me, the right hours, days, pay and commuting distance was everything I needed. Yet, I was scared of the unknown and that is why I went for it. We didn’t need the job but I knew it would get us closer to our goals if I took it. When I changed my defensiveness attitude to gratefulness I was able to take hold of the opportunity and make it work. Of course like any job there have been days that I’ve wanted to pull my hair out and quit but not only am I more resilient but this temporary job does more good for my family than bad. This is just one example of what changing your attitude can do for you. Whenever you have moments when you can’t decide what to do, recall the moments when you have made a decision you were uncertain about and it worked out better than you thought. This shows that the world is not out to get you, nor is there an no evil force against you; it is about your attitude and choices. Your perspective is a powerful force.
Don’t forget to ask yourself what you would gain and lose from the opportunity. Are you willing to make time for it? Don’t be afraid to ask yourself the hard, honest questions because they will offer you the insight you need to make the right choice.
Story telling time!!! In the comments, tell me a time when a decision you made worked out better than you thought it would?
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Until next time,