Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Life: Not What the Brochure Promised

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By LifeAdviceSite.com

There are some basic rules that have been set down for us as guidance in order to live a happy and fulfilling life. No one is sure exactly where these standards came from, but it's been a consensus for the most part. Follow your dreams, they say. Work hard and you will achieve your heart's desire.

Really? Does that work? I thought so...

I finished high school with good grades and even pursued a four year degree. While I loved teaching and working with children, I found out pretty quickly that I could barely support myself on the salary I was making at a daycare. It was depressing.

So I shifted my focus. I sadly kissed those sweet, chubby faces goodbye and got myself a job in Corporate America. The money was better and so were the benefits. There were fewer diapers and less drooling, but almost as much whining and not quite so much emotional satisfaction. I stayed the course, though. I kept my chin up and my nose clean. I fought to excel at every task given to me and tried to make it my own.

One morning while driving to work down the same route as always, I literally gasped when I found myself in the parking lot at work. After a 40 minute drive, I barely even remembered getting there! Granted it was early in the morning and residual sleepiness might have played a part, but I realized I had been habitually following the same routine day after day and month after month to the point where I could almost do it in my sleep. I was on complete autopilot. I saw myself as a
drone along with everyone else, and I hated it. I didn't enjoy my life, and I saw little reason to my existence. I wasn't growing or learning anything new. All I could see was getting up and going to work all day every day to make the money needed so I would have some place to come home to at the end of the day. Working to maintain that home meant I rarely had time to enjoy my home. There was little time for anything else, either. I found myself caught in a strange conundrum.

At the time, I was also seeking to find my soul mate and spent a lot of time thinking about what he would be like and how we would enjoy life together. Then I sadly realized we would never be fully enjoying life together if he was working, I was working and we were both spending so much of our lives on the survival portion. What kind of a life would that be?

I looked around and thought, "Is this it? Not exactly what the brochure promised!" I thought life was supposed to be something beautiful. Aren't we supposed to spend time learning, teaching, growing and loving each other? What about all the places I had yet to travel? What about all the things I wanted to experience? Where was the excitement and adventure? How would I ever get anything accomplished if I spent my whole life working just to support my basic necessities? I wasn't even living an extravagant lifestyle by any stretch of the imagination. I had a modest two bedroom condo, a reliable car and a little left over for basics like clothes bought on sale, utilities used sparingly and food purchased in accordance to the grocery store sale circular. I rarely ate out at restaurants, I never spent money on books, classes, movies, or makeup... I basically had no extras. I was OK with that, but deep down I just felt there was a promise of something more.

When I started to change my life and realized I could be anything I wanted with the power of my mind and the power of positive intention, it finally began to click for me. NO, life is NOT supposed to be so discontented after all. I'm supposed to be healthy, wealthy and fulfilled in every possible way! Me and my fellow mankind are entitled to be happy and have fun. We were put here to learn and experience everything we possibly can. This is it. We have to make it great!

When I made that shift and I left behind the paradigm I had crammed myself into, my mind and heart literally exploded with ideas and creative consciousness. I went out and pursued several other career paths, learning and gleaning new experiences as I went. I was on fire, and after some a few years I uncovered my vision for what my life should be. For me, it was not inside a corporate office with a daily 8-5. My life vision was about expression, sharing and helping others in a way that meant something to me. I wanted freedom - financial freedom, freedom of my time and freedom to fly by the seat of my pants on any given day. I knew that vision could change or further develop down the road, and I knew all I had to do was follow it.

Years have passed and here I am now - still following, still opening my mind more and more with every day. I still have fleeting moments of discontent, but then I grab the reigns and take back control to steer my life in the direction it's meant to go.

We all have the desire, and we all have the ability. The key is to spend time on inner reflection so you can reveal your life to yourself. Who are you, and what do you want out of life? What do you have to learn, and what do you have to teach? How can you make the things that you love doing become the impetus for your life? Can you figure out a way to support yourself and your family on your passions? Where there's a will, there is most definitely a way. It can be done - especially in the world we live in today. We have so many amazing opportunities open to us. Just open your eyes and begin to see them.


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