I’ve been struggling a bit lately with everything on my plate…with decisions made months ago that may no longer serve me…with opportunities that unexpectedly presented themselves…with trying to understand whether I’m doing something for myself, someone else, or because I feel “I have to”.
When it comes right down to it, though, the greatest freedom is the freedom of choice. That means, every day…in every moment…with every opportunity…I hold the power of choice. I get to decide what’s right for me now. It doesn’t matter what was right for me a year ago…or 9 months ago…or 6 weeks ago. What matters is what’s right for me right.now.
That doesn’t give me a built in excuse to be flaky and constantly changing my mind…I mean, I guess it does but that’s not the purpose. The purpose of recognizing that this freedom…the freedom of choice…is available to us whenever we need it is to afford us the opportunity to check in with ourselves. To ask ourselves, is this what I want to be doing with my time…my self…my life?
I’ll admit, I’ve been struggling a bit with this newfound freedom. Sure, I’ve preached it to others, but as a recovering obligation gal…a former people pleasing addict…it’s hard for me to admit when I’ve changed my mind, especially when it comes to a commitment I’ve made or expectation I’ve set. For years I’ve done what was expected because I thought that was the most efficient path to acceptance. And it was, acceptance from the external world…from society…but it left me feeling vacant…frustrated…lost.
I’ve been working hard to bust out of those old patterns. I think I’m making huge strides in my personal life…and even a few professionally but I still have work to do. And the biggest work needs to be in learning to identify when I’ve made a commitment that I’m no longer interested in pursuing.
Princess Grace and I were out running errands yesterday in preparation for our SUP yoga classes and I’d been telling her about my unexplained anger as of late. We were talking through some of the possible causes when my phone rang. It was my mom.
(BTW, mom is back home recovering from her surgery, which was a great success. She has 8 of her remaining 9 weeks of chemo left. So far so good…keep all the good vibes coming her way, please and thank you.)
Mom was calling to see when Mr. Universe’s family was arriving. When I reminded her that I’d be off in Chicago for my training the first couple of days they were here, she was surprised. She reads my blog too (and we obviously talk). She had assumed that I’d decided to postpone the program given everything else that was going on…her illness, the new boyfriend, the new puppy, the new business, SUP classes, the boyfriend’s family visiting…there was a lot.
I told her I thought I could still manage the first weekend and would make a decision after that. She again shared her perspective…that this didn’t seem like a good time with everything else and I reminded her that there’s probably never a good time. That I always seem to find plenty of ways to fill my time. “That’s true. Your call.“, she said as we said our goodbyes and hung up. And thus the seed was planted….
It was my call. I do have a lot going on…a lot of things have changed in my life since I made this commitment last year. I’m not the same person with the same goals or the same hang ups. I have the freedom to make my own choices…to decide what’s right for me…to determine how I want to spend my time. That’s sooooo the point of being retired, actually.
So I’ve decided to cancel my enrollment in the training program. I mean, let’s be real. I’ve been coaching people for years…YEARS. I’ve run a multi-million dollar business….managed people for 15+ years…wrote more business plans than anyone will ever read…plowed through more self help books than I care to admit…survived 10 years of therapy…had my own life coach for almost 2 years…and do my best every day to apply all the lessons I’ve learned to my own life.
I’m sure there’s more for me to learn — there’s always more to learn — but I’ve got some significant experience to draw from. It’s time to have confidence in my own abilities…to stop putting unnecessary conditions and obstacles in my path…to trust that I got this. I don’t need a piece of paper to tell me that I’m ready. I know I am. And because the greatest freedom is the freedom of choice…I’m making some decisions.