There’s more to life than endlessly snoozing your alarms, rushing to work, going to the gym, commuting, eating microwaved dinners, and watching Netflix - rinse and repeat until TGIF.
It’s time to stop normalizing toxic emotions as a by-product of your job because “everyone feels this way”. Sunday night anxiety is not the price to pay for your honorable career, your achievements, or milestones collected along the way. The heavy distress felt while powering through the week “so that it’s finally weekend again” does not make you the employee of the month. The frustration of living for the weekend and then spending it only to rest from the exhausting past week so that you can prepare for a new, stressful one again does not imply you will get your promotion soon.
It’s time for you to seriously think about improving your life, redesigning a new work-life balance, and ultimately allowing you to no longer choose between what you love doing and what you have to do. It's time to get off that hamster wheel you are on.
Redefining Old Paradigms
The current paradigm is broken: life is no longer about sacrificing the time and headspace you can devote to what and who matters to you for the sake of work. Gone are the times when you are stuck in the rat race and working for 40 years while waiting for your annual leave and pension before finally starting to live on your terms.
Thanks to the phenomenon known as “The Great Resignation”, in the U.S. only, about 50.5 million people quit their jobs in 2022, beating out the 47.8 million in 2021, according to Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey data.
Also, according to federal data, more than 50 million workers quit their jobs in 2022, breaking a record set the year prior.
Millennials are not the lost generation - as they used to be referred to. As a matter of fact, they are the generation proactively looking for alternative ways of living “outside the matrix”.
If you too, at least once, have daydreamed about what you would do, if only you could quit your job, let me ask you: why do you keep pretending to like a job you hate? Why do you want to stick to a role which makes you feel trapped and chained behind a desk? Are you seriously willing to take the hit, throw away the key of the drawer where your dreams are getting rotten forever, while the talent you wish you had nurtured keeps dying a little more every time a new urgent email fills your inbox?
It’s exhausting to keep pretending. It’s toxic to grow resentful toward your own life. It’s disempowering to let the dread you feel feed your dying soul.
Who are you doing it for then? Most importantly, what for?
Why Leaving Your Comfort Zone is So Much Better
Although the pandemic has helped speed up the transition process towards online jobs, remote working, digital nomadism, and all other alternatives, one of the biggest yet unanswered questions still concerns how to make the change. While the fear of the unknown is real, I would like to be your devil’s advocate here and ask you: are you more scared of leaving the painful yet known path you are on, to dare build a life made on your terms, OR regretting the opportunities you did not allow yourself to chase for the sake of not being judged after?
One day your life will pass before your eyes like a movie: make sure it will be one worth watching! - Gerard Way
The overwhelmed you feel each time you debate, “Yes, I quit, but what for? And most importantly, how?” is real and understandable. However, there is a way to find answers to all the questions you might have, such as: “Where to start? What’s my next step? Do I even have something to offer outside my current role? How do I even choose what life is right for me?” and so on and so forth.
Let’s debunk the myth of mimicking anything that seems to be working for those around you “...because if it’s working for them, it shall work for me too!”. Let’s instead create a plan to arrive at the destination of your choice through a method made of real tools to help you gain clarity around what suits you best, so you can get unstuck and take action with ease and confidence - no overwhelm accepted.
In a world made of shiny lives relentlessly shown off on Instagram and TikTok, the true answers to “What’s the right next step for you?” is to be found within you, taking the time to pause and reflect on what you truly need to improve your life.
How to Define Your New Path in Life
Once you start asking the right questions, you will be surprised to see the vast number of options that might unfold before you. It is as liberating as overwhelming at once. In order to prevent the latter from making you want to stick to what you know, what follows is an explanation of my signature 5-step method to create your own definition of success, and identify the right next step for you. Let’s delve in:
Step 1: Define Your Uniqueness
All you need to change your life is already within you: the answers you are seeking, what you have got to give to the world, your ideal daily routine, the type of job that best suits you, and even your productivity levels have everything to do with who you are as an individual. To find out more, focus on the following five elements:
- Identify your Values: they are your guiding principles, your internal compass to create your personal method of choice to navigate the vast possibilities lying before you. No more confusion about what’s best to choose for yourself.
- Reconnect with your Passions & Interests: to feel motivated even on a Monday, it’s crucial to have self-knowledge around what sparks the fire within your soul, and include it in your new job…otherwise, why bother changing?
- Know your Talents & Skills: being clear on what you have to offer will help you boost your self-confidence, proving you are not starting over from scratch. Gain clarity around the skills you have gathered within your last three projects, and how to transfer them to your new job - all while mixing it up with your passions and interests. At this intersection resides the key to a motivating and fulfilling job role for you.
- Understand your personality: delving into what kind of person you are will help you identify several aspects which play a crucial role in shaping your new job role, such as when your productivity levels are higher if you are made for teamwork and independent assignments if you are more creative or analytical, and so on. This will help you identify the working conditions for you to perform at your best.
Step 2: Choose The Kind of Life You Want
In order to make sure your big leap outside the matrix will be worth it, it is key to consciously choose your new lifestyle, instead of letting life lead you again. Use the renewed self-knowledge you have gathered to define what you truly want to include in your new life. Think bigger than work only: reflect on all key areas of life, and choose the priorities to allocate your time towards each. Where do you want to wake up? What would you like your morning routine to be? Would you like to work from anywhere or from the comfort of your home? This is your white canvas moment: there is no limit to what you can create!
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Step 3: Identify What Holds You Back
Using the ideal version of life, you have just designed for yourself, it’s now time to reflect - on each key life area you have previously worked on - how far you are from it right now and highlight what is blocking your way to getting there.
Step 4: Stay Away From Your Self-imposed Limiting Beliefs
Your life-change strategy is never effective and completed if you don't work on your mindset. For each obstacle and internal barrier you have identified with the previous step, pinpoint why they are blocking you, and where they are coming from. In the majority of cases, they represent self-limiting beliefs inherited from those who have played a significant role in your life so far. Learning how to recognize and overcome them is key to creating a new empowering belief system, supporting you while making the change.
Step 5: Create Your Life Design Strategy
You can now start from a clean slate to consolidate all the work done so far into your strategy to close the gap between your current life stage, and where you have decided to want to go. Clarify your why about making this change. Set S.M.A.R.T. goals for yourself, possibly spread across different time horizons - within the immediate term (24/48h), short (2 weeks), medium (1 month), long (2 months) term. Designate your accountability partner with your closest friends, so they can help you keep track of the progress you will be making in a supportive way.
By following all the steps of this method, you will get crystal clear about the direction to head towards to start living on your terms. You will be equipped with a deep sense of faith in your ability to make the change and take your big leap out of the scripted life with ease and confidence.
I hope this article has provided you with all the relevant tools to autonomously explore how to make your desired life change. If instead, you feel you would like a partner in crime for your journey, I would be honored and happy to be your n.1 cheerleader, and the mirror you cannot avoid while you are trying to self-sabotage again.
Wish you all the best!
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About The Author
I am Anna, Life Design Coach, ex- marketing manager in burnout in London. Made in Italy, after 7 years spent living and working in different European countries, I decided to redesign a life made of my own rules, priorities, and needs. I have decided to be for others the person I wished there was for me while I was making my own life change. I have created MY OWN METHOD based on my experience and founded Lemon Life Coaching (lemonlifecoaching.net). I now help freedom-seekers stuck in their 9-5 redesign a life that represents them.
You can follow her on her social media channels:
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