In this episode, I share with you advice and encouragement so that you have the courage and confidence to step boldly into your next season of life. Maybe you’re contemplating a job change or a big move. Maybe you are thinking about starting a new hobby or entering the next phase of a relationship. Maybe you’ve already done one (or more) of these things and you’re still experiencing some anxiety or uncertainty about your choice. If you are, that’s completely normal and I want you to know that your feelings are valid. They matter. The hacks and advice I’m offering in today’s show are not intended to invalidate or change your feelings, but my hope is that something I say gets your wheels turning in a new way so you can take action and stand tall in your decision so you can step boldly into a more authentic version of yourself.
Big decisions are life-changing and I don’t believe anyone makes a big decision with the intent to ruin their life or cause themselves additional strife. I do, however, believe that big decisions present opportunities for growth and evolution. They challenge us to go inward and contemplate our choices' potential consequences. Big decisions can inspire creativity and challenge our boundaries. They cause us to reevaluate our priorities and assess our values.
So without further adieu, here are some things that may be standing in the way of your next best move.
3 Things Standing in the Way of your Next Best Move
#1: You’re Short-Changing Yourself
I’ve met very few people in life - including myself - who recognize even ¾ of their full potential. We constantly sell ourselves short in this comparison culture and we subscribe to the narrative that we are not good enough. It’s like we refuse to be okay with who we are because Instagram, Pinterest, or Tik Tok are constantly telling us we need to be or do more.
To explain this, I always go back to examples like Sephora or even the grocery store. When you go to purchase a new brow pencil, lip gloss, or even hot sauce, there are seemingly hundreds to choose from. But here’s the thing, they all have different characteristics that appeal to different people. One lip gloss may be long-lasting while the other has moisturizing qualities that claim to help your lips. While each lip gloss may seem similar, they each offer something a little different that allows each brand to coexist on the shelves. Brands that have staying power lean into their unique identity because they know that, while they may not appeal to everyone, there are people out there who are excited to be served by them.
I want you to know you are enough. In fact, you are more than enough.
If you're struggling with your self-worth, here are a couple of things you can try:
Write an affirming statement about yourself on your mirror.
Put sticky notes with an affirming statement in your car.
Get some affirmation cards.
Ask your friends to share affirmations about you.
Remember, your skills and gifts are unique to you and the way you show up in the world is special. All you need to do is recognize, believe, and affirm your own value.
#2: You Lack Clarity
The summer before I transitioned out of the classroom, I was at a loss for how to move forward and take action toward my new career. I knew that I was ready for change, but I was frozen at that point in my journey. When I was reflecting about how I accomplished my goal, it was like it came to me all of a sudden and my uncertainty stemmed from the fact that I really had no idea what I wanted to do or what I could do. I didn’t have a starting point because I lacked clarity. I wasn’t clear on who I was, what needs weren’t being met from my current job, what I wanted in a new job, or even what I valued in the workplace.
What I decided to do was start by identifying what I liked and disliked about my current role. I used that information to create my list of ideal workplace “wants.” Then, I looked at those wants and identified core values that were rooted in my desires. Those values served as a compass in my journey, directing me to pursue roles that reflected what was most important to me.
Gaining clarity was a game-changer for me and I know it will be for you too! Clarity will help you gain confidence in your decisions whether it’s a new job, a relationship, or simply pursuing a new goal. If you’re a teacher looking to make a career shift or you’re just curious about the possibilities, whether you intend to stay in the classroom or if you’re considering other options, check out my Guide to Career Clarity for Educators. I hope you’ll check it out and start making your way more confidently toward your goals.
Fear is a powerful motivator. After all, it’s fear that pushed us to explore space and land on the moon all within a decade. Fear often elicits immediate results and behavioral changes in an attempt to avoid the pain of negative consequences.
The problem with fear, though, is that it doesn’t produce lasting results or always lead to meaningful impact. In the example of landing on the moon, the impacts of that event were far-reaching and span generations, but even so, our passion for and focus on space travel diminished significantly only 2 decades after the moon landing. Without fear, we weren’t as motivated to accomplish the goal and impact became a non-factor. When fear is the impetus for action, our habits are driven primarily by the threat of consequences rather than by the potential for innovation or transformation.
If you feel fear is holding you back, I want you to follow these steps:
Ask yourself: What am I most afraid of? and write it on one side of a sheet of paper.
Think about the potential of your impact. Ask yourself: What are the possibilities of lasting positive effects from this decision? Don’t shy away from the seemingly idealistic impacts. There’s space for all your thoughts.
Look at your list and focus in on all the opportunities for you to create incredible experiences that will facilitate your growth and expand your worldview!
Life is full of big choices. I believe we make the best of those choices by recognizing that these are opportunities for us to grow into even better versions of ourselves. Fear and anxiety are justified - these feelings signal us to stop and evaluate positive and negative consequences. They push us towards clarity and they affirm that, yes, this choice is one that will ultimately serve me (and maybe even others well).
As you consider big decisions for your own life, I encourage you to lean into the feelings that you’re having. Don’t immediately write them off as obstacles or signs that this move isn’t right for you. Think of your feelings as data - information that guides your choices so you can make your next best move.
Resources Mentioned in This Episode
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