What Did You Expect?
This is the final installment of the “Don’t Unsettle For Less” series.
I just got home from spending a weekend in Buffalo, attending my husband’s 30th high school reunion, which was both awkward and fun for me. I’m the type of woman that is crazy outgoing around people I know but tend to introvert like a boss in groups I am unfamiliar with.
It was interesting to see that many of the people who attended were, on some level, still in high school. There was too much drinking, some of the man-boys were too loud, a few of the girls may or may not have been hunting for husbands, and so on. Don’t get me wrong, plenty of them were doing great!
What struck me is the number of people who indicated, mostly in an undertone, they were (on some level) dissatisfied with the way their life turned out. They would use phrases like, “I’m just a production manager,” or “I never left FedEx.”
It’s as if they are saying, “I had the lowest of expectations, and I’m still disappointed.”
It made me think about my own life and where I’ve been and where I hope to go. The truth is, I am not where I want to be. Yet.
Maybe it was lack of confidence or the verbal decimation of my dreams by people I thought loved me, but I’ve felt stuck for longer than I can remember. Unsettled about what I am supposed to be doing. What is the one thing I was made for and holy cow, what if I never figure it out?
I’m what you would call multi-passionate, which basically means I have dream ADD. I suppose it goes along with my diagnosed ADD, but sometimes it’s hard to focus on one thing long enough to make a significant impact.
I’ve prayed about it, too, mind you. I’m trying to run the race set before me, but am I the only one who feels like I veered off the path a mile or two ago and ended up in nowhere-ville? I would say staying on track is a real struggle, but the truth is sometimes I don’t even know where the path is! I’ve tried handing the wheel to Jesus, but it seems to drop on the floor like a lead balloon. Where did you go, Jesus? Hello? Bueller? Bueller?
Here’s what I do know. I love to encourage women. I’m pretty good at it, even. I get hacked off when women are hard on themselves and downplay things they are good at doing. It’s total B.S. You were designed to change the world, same as me, but maybe not the same way as me. That’s the trick, isn’t it? You, me, our friends, sisters, aunts, and moms all have incredible gifts. That’s no accident, girl.
There are people in the world who are thirsty, no starving, for what you have to offer, and zero of them will get what they need if we give up searching for our thing.
I skipped my 30th reunion, but after sharing my husband’s with him, I know that if I decide to go to the 35th (or 40th, or whatever), I want to be excited about where I am in life, what I’ve accomplished, and what the future still holds as far as adventure and possibility.
And, my motives are pure here, but I wouldn’t mind if anyone mean to me admitted to themselves they were totally wrong about me. Just sayin’.
I once heard that your purpose is at the corner where your gifts and the world’s great need collide. If you need a simple formula for discovering your corner, try this:
1. Ask yourself what you are good at doing. Make a list. Even if it’s long. Then look for any common thread. Almost all of mine relate back to empowering women in some way.
2. Ask yourself what makes you angry in the world? What situation makes otherwise calm you feel as though there is an injustice taking place? For me, it’s when women deny their awesomeness.
I am an encourager at heart. Women need to know (or remember) how powerful they are. It ticks me off when they act less-than in any way. I am good at things like writing, speaking, business coaching, etc. Therefore, in everything I do, I use my passion for building women up.
Am I on the right path? Who friggin knows? But I’m confident that if I was at my reunion and someone asked me, “What do you do now?” my answer would be full of excitement and passion because I am doing what I know how to do to help other women do what they know how to do.
How would you answer that question?
I hope and pray, it’s with excitement and passion, even if you aren’t sure you are on your one right path. But if it’s with disappointment in any possible way, we’ve got a little work to do, sister.
It’s not about finding your single purpose, it’s about finding your passion and boldly sharing what you know for the benefit of others. It may be a thousand different ways, but who convinced us there was only one path anyway?
So here it is, the final piece of the Unsettled puzzle. Life and purpose are messy as hell, and women like you and me overcomplicate and overanalyze til we are paralyzed. But not anymore. The point isn’t to organize the mess, it’s to learn to thrive in the middle of it all. Start today but doing one thing you are good at for one person who needs it. You won’t believe how quickly that will add up into a fantastic answer at your next reunion.
Here is your homework. Answer the question, “What are you doing now?” as if you are excited about your life. Even if it isn’t real yet. Hit reply, leave a comment or send me a DM on Insta. I’ll play the part of the former classmate. Ready? Go!