Every now and again someone will ask an innocent question that has a profound impact on our view of life. Sometimes the impact is short lived as we return to the daily grind of activities filling our lives, but occasionally the question stays in our head and niggles away quietly in the background causing mild unrest. We almost do not want to answer the question as it will reveal an aspiration too hard to achieve, or perhaps make us face a situation we have successfully ignored up until now, or maybe because it will remind us of what we really wanted and who we really are and have since forgotten as we have adapted ourselves to fit in society and our work environment.
I was asked the following innocent question about four years ago:
“If you had achieved all you wanted to in life with no regrets and you were reflecting back on your life, what would be the highlights and the things you would be most proud of in your life?”
In answering this question I revisited my aspirations and my own personal goals, thus reminding myself of what I wanted to achieve. I realised I was putting off my own dreams using the lack of time as my biggest excuse.
There was always a reason not to start progressing towards my own personal goals; it was always “I will do something when I get around to it”. First I was studying, then I was working, now I am raising a family, tomorrow there will something else. Life goes on, but at some point life will pass me by and then it will be too late for me to do anything. If I make no effort to progress towards my own personal goals now, then I will be reminiscing on â€œwhat ifsâ€ and regrets. What a waste!
Don’t underestimate me. When thinking about this question I had it all: a job I loved, a career with good prospects and a lovely family and yet there was something that was not quite right. I thought I was doing an excellent job of juggling all the things in my life. Yet all I was doing was juggling more and more, faster and faster, rushing from A to B, B to C, nearly always on auto pilot. I enjoyed my work, I love my family, my husband and kids are great, so what was niggling away in the background?
This one question resulted in me re-evaluating my priorities. Somewhere along my journey I had put my dreams to one side as I got on with “life”. But not anymore! Having thought long and hard on what was important to me and what did I really want to achieve, I made the necessary changes in my life. These changes were not easy or quick decisions, nor would the benefits be realised immediately. However, having now made these changes, I am happy to say I consider my life to be richer in fulfilment.
We always have options. It is often too easy to go with the flow. Sometimes we go with the flow without even realising it. But once we realise something is not quite right, are we brave enough to challenge the status quo of our life and dare to change?
So let me now ask you an innocent question:
“If you were the person you really wanted to be, what would be different about your life?”
Do you dare to change?