Written during quarantine 2020…
Right now, many of us are consumed with overwhelming fear, doubt, and anxiety. We’re isolated in our own homes — maybe even trapped in a small 500 square foot studio— wondering if things will ever be the same.
We’re living in our sweatpants, joining way too many forced virtual meetings, while gazing out our windows reminding ourselves that the light in our world still exists.
For some of us, this feels like another day-in-the-life. Maybe you have always worked from home or you thrive in isolation. For others, this isolation feels heavy because not only are you enclosed in a confined space, but you’re also trapped inside your own head.
When we’re consumed by our own thoughts, we’re naturally going to think about all the what if’s.
What if I get furloughed or laid off?
What if I don’t get that promotion I was promised?
What if I lose clients?
What if I can’t pay my rent next month?
What if I get sick?
What if I never feel free again?
These are all justified fears turning into realities, and my heart goes out to every form of loss occurring in our world right now. Loss can lead us straight into emotional trauma, which pulls us down into a state of victim consciousness.
Living in your own thoughts and listing off all the what-ifs can feel torturous at times, but this also leads to internalizations that we normally tune out when we’re busy doing all-the-things.
Now we can finally see things as they truly are with no blinders on. We can tune out the noise and remove ourselves from the universal chaos in order to start tuning into ourselves.
What if we use this isolation as an opportunity to think about our limitless potential? We can just as easily use this time to start tuning into our creator consciousness.
This is the time to dive deep into our own personal values and feel whether or not we are in energetic alignment with who we are, what we believe in, and what we really want to be doing with our lives.
When will we ever get another chance like this one, when we are literally forced to isolate ourselves? It’s almost like the universe is putting us all in a much-needed time out to quietly shake us awake. We’re being told to finally listen to ourselves and find our truth.
It’s time to tilt our heads and expand our perspectives.
Isolation leads to enlightenment
Isolation removes the noise from our environments so that we can sit quietly with ourselves and reflect. If you quiet your mind long enough and truly listen to yourself, you can receive so many downloads and inner guidance. This is why so many people spend hours meditating and immersing themselves in silent meditative retreats around the world. Isolation leads to enlightenment.
If you let go of the fear and anxiety for just a moment, you can tune into your higher self and find meaning. If you try to look beyond the doubt, you can see the silver linings. You might even be guided to something extremely purposeful and experience those much-needed realizations — the ones you were blind to before.
You can start shifting your perspective from that of a victim to that of a creator.
Reaching realizations can lead you into the next chapter of your life. If you lost your job, maybe your realization is that you were investing all of your energy into a business built on a house of cards. This might lead you down a path of personal exploration where you can become the captain of your own ship.
If we shift our mindset, our losses will give us wisdom that steers us into a new path; a path we would have never had the courage to choose otherwise.
What if there is something more out there that will light up your soul? Maybe this is something as simple as picking up a guitar or a paintbrush. Start journaling to make sense of your thoughts and bring enlightenment to yourself and others. Take those e-courses or build your own, launch that blog, and start filming those videos you’ve scripted.
Maybe it’s time to finally start building that side hustle you have been telling yourself about for years. Or to kickstart that business plan you’ve drafted up in your head and never put down on paper.
In these disheartening times, you may feel reinvigorated and more inspired to make a bigger difference. How can you contribute more to the world? Think about all the steps you need to take to get there, and what you can get started on right now.
Listen to your soul. What are you being drawn to? During this time of uncertainty, you might find your true North Star.
Fear and doubt always exists, right now it’s just universally exemplified
I used to be a sales rep at Google, which many would say is a dream job. But to me, it was just a corporate job to get paid. I had a constant daydream stuck in my head as I dozed off in unproductive team meetings. I envisioned starting my own creative business where I could work on meaningful passion projects and live life on my own terms. I was always stuck in my own head, and I knew I was meant to go out there and create something of my own.
But at the time, I didn’t think I was capable. I was living in a world of conformity and high expectations. I was in a comfort bubble making great money at a coveted company with all the perks you could ever need. How could I walk away from all that?
Despite the free lunches and unlimited lattes, I wasn’t happy because I was personally out of alignment. The corporate vibe no longer aligned with my personal vibe. Many people thrive in the corporate environment and I definitely did earlier in my life, but my time was reaching an end.
My inner voice kept tuning in, so I started making a strategic plan to walk straight into the unknown.
That’s when all the doubtful what-ifs became louder.
What if it takes me months to earn a dollar?
What if I have to move into a small dark apartment?
What if I can’t travel anywhere or go out to dinners?
What if I have to eat peanut butter straight from the jar every day?
Outside of my financial and meal planning worries, I more heavily carried the fear of failure.
I was scared about how others would perceive and judge me. What if no one takes me seriously? Will people think I’m making a big mistake and living with my head in the clouds?
I was scared that I might lose my entire identity by walking away from a career that took me 10 years to build.
After isolating myself on my own command, quieting my mind in self-reflection, journaling intensely, and finding strength, I finally said f*ck it to all the fear and doubt.
I took a leap of faith and left the career that had energetically reached it’s ending to start my own business. I bet on myself and walked into a world of unfamiliarity and uncertainty. That was what I needed to do to invest in myself and find my own energetic alignment.
I chose to recreate my own reality.
Embracing a new “normal”
Fast forward to my new life as a solopreneur. Instead of getting all dolled up and going to the office to get my free breakfast and mingle with my work friends, suddenly I was where we all are today. I’m rolling out of bed and making oatmeal with my hair thrown into a messy bun. I’m living in my yoga pants relying solely on my own passion and a laptop.
But my lifestyle and mindset have completely shifted. My work is no longer just a job. I don’t live for the weekends anymore because my work doesn’t start on Monday nor does it end on Friday. There is no such thing as vacation days because I’m in charge of my own time. Somedays I start working at 7am, other days I start working at noon. I don’t have a paycheck to look forward to at the end of the week. Instead, I have customer contracts and invoices that I need signed and paid to keep my calendar filled, passions fueled, and my pride secured.
Although there is a constant unknown and lack of stability, I feel like I’m personally thriving. I’m fully embracing my new normal.
What is “normal” anyway? There is no such thing; just like there is no defined reality. Even when things happen outside of our control, our reality is how we choose to perceive it — reality is our own creation.
It’s time to measure your value as more than just a paycheck
I know we all have bills to pay and people who depend on us, including ourselves. We all need to make that money. Whether that comes in paycheck form, investments, freelance contracts, or your own paying customers, we need that money flowing in to survive.
However, the time is now to truly measure the real value of your day-to-day job. You’re not at the office anymore, there’s no commuting, no socializing, and no one is hovering around your desk or breathing down your neck. Take advantage of these fewer distractions to measure the worth of your work.
You should consider the all-encompassing value that your job brings to your life and well-being. The first question to ask yourself is the simple one… do you even like what you do?
Sure, maybe the perks are amazing, the hours are manageable, and you’re making good money. You might also have awesome work friends — but what about your passion for the work itself?
So many of us have been brainwashed to believe that a job is “just a job”, and jobs are not meant to be passion-filled. We were told that jobs are almost always dreadful and robotic, and that’s just the way life works. As long as you get a paycheck and some benefits, that’s good enough. Sunday scaries are simply the norm. This is a mindset we need to shift, and right now is a perfect time to begin shifting.
In this moment right now, when you have just yourself and the work in front of you, what feeling is left?
Have your energy levels shifted to more energizing or more depleting?
As you work from your own couch, are you still inspired? Maybe isolation has demotivated you because the office environment is what truly motivates you. Or maybe it’s the opposite; you’ve realized you thrive in isolation and you feel more attuned with your work.
Think about how you feel in the morning when your laptop opens and in the evening when it closes. Are you dreading that alarm clock, or are you jumping out of bed eager to migrate to the couch and contribute your skills to the cause?
Are you counting down the minutes until you can move your eyes from the computer over to the TV so you can start your happy hour of Netflix and chill?
Maybe there is an outside perception you live for that now feels far removed. If you put your personal ego away for a second and embrace the work instead of your external image, are you still fulfilled?
We spend most hours of the days and most days of the week pouring our energy into our work. Our work should be purposeful, energizing, and meaningful to us. When you are creating something you are truly passionate about and there is energetic alignment, the money will follow. Passion is energetic, like a magnet.
Nothing in life is a straight line; we live in a Rubik’s cube
Sometimes we need to retreat backward, pivot, and change our strategy.
If we can’t solve a problem or we are unexpectedly thrown off course, that’s the time to rotate our perspective and look at the situation from all different angles.
After 8 months of grinding on my own business, I realized it was the wrong business. It’s not because I was failing or giving up on myself, it’s because something didn’t feel right about the business itself.
I spent so much time hustling, that I didn’t take time to tune into the realization that the work wasn’t in alignment with who I was. I was building a business that felt safe and would be easily be accepted by my network. Although I excelled at it, the passion wasn’t there. I wanted to help people on a larger scale and make a deeper impact on individuals. I just wasn’t fulfilling that craving with my first creation.
Does that mean I wasted my time and energy? Of course not, it was the most valuable time I could have ever asked for. Everything I have experienced up to now — ups, downs, spirals, and twists — has led me to my North Star.
I took everything I learned from corporate to guide myself into solopreneurship. I then took everything I learned from my first journey into solopreneurship — especially the mistakes I made— to confidently go full throttle into a completely different space. I solved my current Rubix cube and found my alignment, and now I’m helping others do the same.
When you leave a world you are familiar with to pursue something unfamiliar—whether by choice or by unforeseen events— it won’t always make sense at first. It might take you multiple tries, losses, failures, and enlightenments to find yourself in a place where you were meant to be. When you start feeling off-balance, listen to yourself and try another direction. If you are doing what you’re passionate about and it truly makes you happy, you will never lose
Life is challenging and can feel unfair at times, especially now that we’re leashed to our confined spaces. Stay confident, stay sovereign, and always bet on yourself and your limitless potential, even when it feels like the whole world is pushing against you.
Originally published on Medium