Millions of people are on autopilot, getting up every day, going to work, hating their jobs and living a generally miserable existence because of it.
Mostly they feel stuck, like they have no other option, and can often be heard saying, “What else would I do if I don’t do this?” Great question! What would you do?
As people, we have multiple personalities, but in a good way, not necessarily psychotically. One side of you might love art, or sings, and another writes, or acts, or even loves fashion or graphic design, but you’re an engineer. Huh? It makes sense when you look back on things and realize that it’s unlikely you were nudged in the direction of your natural-born passions, since most people sadly aren’t. Instead, they’re guided to take the “safe” route, the one that’s supposed to guarantee financial security and happiness, which means getting a traditional job. Yet you’re not happy, dare you admit it. So do you stay?
Everyone wants financial stability, and getting a job for so many seems to be the only way. That’s what we’re taught anyways. Schools, universities and even society teaches us that when it comes to career, the only choices we have are what you find on aptitude tests, which leave no room for creativity or imagination.
But it’s not so unheard of to follow your gut instinct instead and actually make a living at it. In fact, the only thing stopping you is you and what you’ve been conditioned to believe in the first place. Maybe you’re afraid of disappointing someone, or you’re just too afraid, especially if you’re over 40. It might be hard to break free from the rigmarole of life you’ve come to know, but not impossible. And maybe it’s about time to take the leap!
I’m guessing you didn’t mean for your life to be so boring and dull, unfulfilling and monotonous, and the older you get the more you believe this is just how it has to be. I think otherwise, and if I hadn’t done it myself, I wouldn’t be in a position to help you do it too. But I did, and so can you. (I wasn’t independently wealthy or a finance wiz either!)
To get started, follow these tips:
1. Figure out what you want to do. Not what you think you should do, but what you actually want to do. Now, this could take time. I wasn’t clear on my life path until my early 40’s, otherwise I probably would’ve followed it a lot sooner. Certain circumstances may need to line up before you’ll know for sure, however a great way to figure it out sooner is to think about what you always wanted to do when you were a kid, or what you daydream about all day long.
2. Have a nest egg. Even if it’s only a few thousand dollars, it will go a long way toward helping you feel secure and therefore not constantly focused on money, which can distract you. Without even a little financial backup, you’ll panic too much over money and just go get another job.
3. Plan to fail, many, many times. Not to be Debbie Downer, but the truth is, you’ll fail, many times, until you’re secure in what you’re doing and how to do it. Going from a job to self-employment for example is a huge transition for someone who’s used to a bi-monthly paycheck. You can still get paid every two weeks, or even every week (or more), but only once you’ve established yourself and know how to bring in consistent cash. Until then, money will slow down if not cease, so it’s best to prepare yourself ahead of time for how it will affect you, which might mean feeling like a failure at times. Rest assured it’s just part of the process and the more you push through it the less it will happen.
4. Burn your bridges. I know, usually the opposite is true, but in this case, it’s critical! We both know you never want to go back, so you might as well burn your bridges now thereby making it impossible. If you leave the door open to go back, when the going gets tough – which it inevitably will – then you will, and just wind up in square one which will only defeat the purpose.
5. Trust. Although it should be first, I put it last, with reason. It’s what I want to leave you with. Having faith in yourself and something greater than you and trusting the guidance you receive is the most important asset you’ll need to make your move successful. Never underestimate the power of faith and how it will make or break whatever you’re trying to accomplish.
People come up with lots of reasons why they can’t do something, instead of all the reasons why they can. We’re hardwired to feel fear first so it’s no surprise people make decisions out of fear versus desire, which always lead to the wrong decisions. However, with the right mindset, you can easily pursue your dreams without feeling any regret so that you never look back and say, “What if?”