I used to wake up every day with heaviness and an inexplicable weight on my mind and in my soul. My heart would sink at the thought of the day that lay ahead of me. Most days, it was an effort to be appreciative of my life.
I should have felt grateful for everything that I had going for me. But all that I felt was lost. I felt like a piece of paper drifting in the wind, being pushed in a particular direction by something other than my own free will.
There was this constant, overwhelming feeling that I was not where I was supposed to be in life. My life was good. It was comfortable, but there was a vital piece missing. I could feel it.
Does it make sense to say that I was in my comfort zone yet still feeling unsettled?
I am an engineer by profession. I chose this career simply because it guaranteed me a financially secure and comfortable life. It was good enough for me for a long time. That was up until a few years ago when I realized that my comfortable life was no longer making me feel complete.
My job stopped being fulfilling. It felt meaningless in the greater scheme of things. My drive and motivation to progress in my career took a nosedive. It honestly felt like my soul was being destroyed. I couldn’t understand why I felt this way, because I had everything I ever wanted.
Then one day, I came across this quote by Maya Mendoza:
“No amount of security is worth the suffering of a mediocre life chained to a routine that has killed your dreams.”
It struck me then that I was not living the life that I had dreamed of. I’m not talking about money or fancy cars or a huge house.
Growing up, I wanted to be a writer. I wrote all the time. I wrote poems, short stories, even articles that I pretended would be published in the daily newspaper. As I grew older, I had to adjust my dreams to more realistic ones. I had to choose security over passion.
That quote by Maya Mendoza nagged at me for days, hanging over me so prominently, as I dredged through my day. It became clear to me… my job, my source of security, it was killing me softly, slowly, and piercingly.
I had reached a crossroad. Should I continue on the same road, on the path that offered me and my family security, but at the expense of my drive and passion? Or did I dare to make a change, to take the road not taken, to ignite the spark that I had lost somewhere along the way?
I didn’t want to sacrifice my family’s financial security. Also, I don’t know why, but I worried about what people would think of me if I just up and left my job. Would they think less of me? So I continued with my unsatisfactory existence.
Sometimes it takes a life-changing experience to drive you to connect with your purpose in life. That happened to me; I lost someone so essential to me. I needed an outlet for the overwhelming grief that I felt, together with everything else that I was dealing with.
It was an internal battle, to either just ride the wave or to take action. I made a choice to take action. I made a choice to take a small step towards my dream. So, I started to write, sharing my feelings, frustrations, and hopes on my Facebook and Instagram pages.
But I had this feeling that it couldn’t stop there. I was still feeling unsettled and broken, needing to do more.
I then started a blog, using my writing to offer others hope and inspiration. It has been two years since I made those changes. While I don’t have a large following, a few people have reached out to me because they resonated with my words and experiences.
It is such an incredible feeling to finally touch lives in a meaningful way through my dream, through my writing. The weight—that heaviness—is slowly lifting. It feels as though I am back on track to doing something worthwhile.
I haven’t yet found the courage to quit my job, but I feel that that day is fast approaching.
Your story may not be the same as mine, but you may also feel a disconnect with your chosen path wherever you are in your journey. Like me, it may be that you are not exactly where you are supposed to be.
I know that it feels simpler to stay in your comfort zone. To make a change, even a small one, may seem like you are uprooting your whole life.
I understand all too well how difficult it is to take that first step. If you feel apprehensive, ask yourself this:
Is it truly worth it to forever endure that crushing feeling of being stuck where you don’t belong?
You don’t have to wait for something life-altering to happen to make a change. As long as you live and breathe, there will always be a chance for you to act.
We die once, but we live every day. Would you rather your life be a mediocre one full of discontent, or do you want your existence to be one of pure joy, light, passion, inspiration, and above all, meaning?
I hope you will choose to feel good about your life, to feel incredible about yourself and the world you created. It’s all there inside of you. You just need to take that first step.
I am on this journey too. I may not be there yet, but I am working towards getting to where I am meant to be.
It’s all on you. YOU have to ignite that light and let it shine.