Accepting Change vs. Embracing Change: Coming to terms with the rollercoaster of life and learning how to enjoy it

It’s oddly funny how much life can change in a year.

I do remember that around this time, last year, life felt amazing. Nearly 2 years after graduating from university, I had endured a lot of turmoil and uncertainty: job hunting was a nightmare, I did like the jobs I did eventually get but I felt very lonely in all of them as I had no coworkers, most of my friends from my uni days had moved to different countries, and I was coping with seeing a loved one painfully struggle through a personal battle. Life felt pretty dismal, and while I never gave up hope, I was completely enveloped in a state of autopilot passive aggressive anxiety (passive in that it’s not obvious or in your face, but aggressive in that it’s still very much present, controlling your every single thought).

Then right before 2017 hit, I got hit by a job offer that changed everything. A full time job offer, paying decent money, working with generally lovely people. As I started the job, and as another year begun to bloom, suddenly the turmoil from the previous year begun to dissipate. It’s not to say that my struggles couldn’t or wouldn’t have changed without this job, but they did.

I think back to a particular morning in March 2017, as I woke up to work on a Saturday for a trade show. I remember waking up in such a great spirit- I felt fresh and rejuvenated and was looking forward to working. The sun was shining outside and I treated myself to a new episode of Riverdale beforehand and thoroughly enjoyed it. I was happy. I can’t say that the sentiment carried through for the rest of the day, after all happiness is just an emotion and our emotions are prone to change constantly(which is why we need to stop putting pressure on the word happiness). However, I find it wonderful that my mind can still remember such a small snippet/moment of my life last year, because clearly the memory impacted me.

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March 2017 AM- Watching Riverdale and loving life and what it has to offer

It was fantastic to feel such serenity, stability, and confidence after feeling constant fear, discomfort, and worry.

If you have read some of my previous blog posts, around the time I created it last August, you will notice that my relationship with this life-changing job started to change negatively. Some of the loveliest people had left and had been replaced with not so lovely people that severely affected my ability to do my job and enjoy it- I’m all for having a good attitude and powering through in the face of adversity, but without going into detail, trust me when I say that (and I trust myself) enough is and was enough.

So as 2017 slammed the breaks and propelled us into 2018, I made another life-changing decision (I quit the job and started a new one). I had no doubts when I made the decision, and in fact, I still do not regret quitting the job that had me saying enough is enough. I also hold no resentment to it- I walked away from it with many great memories, new friends, new skills, and an excavated confidence that had always lived within me.

The last update I gave you all was how I was feeling about that new job- the just was I felt like I had made a huge mistake and went into a slight existential mode about ‘what the fuck am I doing with my life and is this who I really want to be?’ I started questioning if I was going on a practical path  and I I was losing sight over what I loved- writing. So what happened after that anxiety induced millennial crisis hurricane? Well, I quit that new job.

You may think I didn’t even give it a chance, but you know, a few months have passed now and I 100% know I made the right decision for myself. There was a lot about of the job that was not for, and a lot that resounded negative alarm bells over why I left my previous job purely from an ethical standpoint.

Why am I bringing this all up now? Well, to explain the title of today’s blog post, it doesn’t take a rocket science to admit life is constantly changing. We hear about it al the time. Some of us thrive off change, some of us seek it, some of us welcome it, some of us fear it, some of us despise it, and some of waste all of our futile energy trying to stop it from happening. I think it’s safe to say all of us have approached change at some point with one of the previous attitudes.

We always hear life is a rollercoaster, with plenty of ups and downs and sharp turning points, and often change plays a role when we reach these peaks, dipping points, and out-of-nowhere life altering moments. Much like life is a rollercoaster, change is a rollercoaster because it can feel exciting and euphoric, or it can make us feel anxious and frightened.

The fact is we all ride this rollercoaster whether we like it or not, and we all go through our shares of highs and lows due to the change we constantly face in our lives. Whether it be change we choose or change that is involuntarily sprung on us, the direction of the rollercoaster changes when it happens- that is something we have to accept.

So to put that into perspective in terms of where I have been in the past few years:

  • April 2016- I was unemployed and was personally struggling, my anxiety was working overtime and I didn’t feel good about myself or what was going on around me. I accepted that this stark change in my life was part of my reality.
  • April 2017- I had gelled into my new job well and was happy with it. Life felt good, and I had overcome a lot of my catastrophic anxieties, and I felt good about myself and the prospect of what life had in store for me. I not only accepted this change in my life, but I embraced it.

Fast forward to today, April 2018, and life is once again very different to both 2016 and 2017. It’s been nearly three years since I have graduated from uni, and today I am not employed. I emphasise the word today because I was employed yesterday and on Friday- I am now doing temporary work, and I am absolutely okay with that for now and actually quite enjoying it.

For someone like myself who craves stability and the unrealistic power to control the future, this is huge for me.

 

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But alas it has, it would, it is, and it will…

I accepted change in 2016, but I resented it because it was a dark time. I embraced change in 2017 because it was everything I had wanted.

At this moment in 2018, I have accepted and embraced that change is going to happen all of time- in the best and worst of times. I have learned that it’s okay and good to embrace change in the ‘worst’ of times as well.

We can’t control everything, but we need to make the most out of the decisions we can control.

The fact is I want a stable job that allows me to thrive through my creativity and allows me to make good money without me needing to take the job home with me. What that job looks like, for me, I’m not sure yet. Am I ready to go for it? I don’t know. Do I really know what I want? I don’t know.

What I know is that I don’t know anything, and for the first time in my life I am okay with that.

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2018: The year I not only accepted change but embraced it

I am okay with not knowing what direction or turn the rollercoaster is taking next, and for today I am just going to live in just that- today.

Thanks for checking in with me, and as always, please feel free to contact me with any thoughts/questions/feedback 🙂

 

 

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