Have you ever had a moment when you’ve been driving on a long road trip and realize your thoughts were drifting off somewhere else and before you know it, you’ve reached your destination with no recollection of the last 60 miles?
Recently, I had one of those experiences – about my life. Last Spring, I found myself in the wrong job, in the wrong city, with the wrong people. Don’t get me wrong, life was fine. I had friends, family and a decent job (by some standards, a fantastic job). I just wasn’t happy. I wasn’t functioning in my gifts. I was showing up to work every day, doing the things, saying the words…but there was daily decreasing joy. As the days and months dragged on, I found myself further and further from where I wanted to be, from who I was created to be.
As a Jesus girl, I love what he says in John 10:10, “The thief comes only to steal kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” (ESV) I knew right then that I wasn’t living life “abundantly.” I wasn’t really living at all…
A speaker once compared a Louisiana Swamp and the Colorado River. Have you ever been to a swamp? The water is still, it oozes but doesn’t really flow. There are bugs and odors and green stuff. And snakes. Don’t get me started on snakes.
The Colorado River on the other hand, is a completely different story. Adventure awaits in its clear, rushing waters. These same waters formed the Grand Canyon, which is listed as one of the seven natural wonders of the world. People flock from all over the world to experience the beauty the Colorado River has behind.
When I think about life, I am often drawn back to those two pictures. I routinely ask myself if life feels more like the ooze of the swamp, just reacting to the day to day; or if it feels like a rushing river full of adventure, leaving beauty in my wake.
I decided to take a deep dive into all areas of my life to see where I felt fulfilled and where there was work that needed to be done.
First, I wrote down the following categories: Finances, Family, Health (also scary – I like cake), Work (Vocation), Hobbies (Avocation – could also be a side hustle), Personal Development, Community, Service and My Faith.
Next, for each category I asked two questions:
- What am I thankful for?
- What are the problems, frustrations, and concerns in this area?
Create your own Life Assessment Tool
Then, I took my list and estimated my level of fulfillment for that area. There were several areas where I was definitely not feeling fulfilled. From there, I was able to dream and plan to make changes that were desperately needed.
Once I had all of this processed in my heart and mind, I was able to dream new dreams and set new goals. What I quickly learned was that even with the dreams and goals in place, taking the first step was the hardest part.
I love this quote by Tony Robbins, “Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change.”
A lot has happened in my life in since the spring of 2017. I have a new job (wahoo!), moved to a new city, built a new house, have a new side hustle and am enjoying every moment of this adventure.
Stacey’s mission is to teach, honor and encourage those she comes in contact with to be who God created them to be. She works as a training manager and sometimes pretends to be a speaker and writer. Her new website can be found at StaceyKlein.com, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.