Take the Leap

How does one find their purpose?  Does each person know their purpose or do we have to follow clues to find it?  Maybe some have one purpose and others have multiple?  The majority of my hours each work day are spent at my office or with clients; yet I know in my gut my purpose in life is something other than my day job.  When I was 25 years old I was certain I would work in my current industry for the rest of my life.  I had aspirations to be a seasoned executive and that idea now seems like history to me.   I am grateful for my current job and appreciate all I have learned over the years.  I have more experience and more exposure and truth be told, there is something else I would like to do.  The “What” is in its fledgling stage as I try to frame and pin it down.  The “What” started nipping at my heels about 2 years ago so I started to pay attention.

I have been talking to people I encounter about their career choices.  My question is usually, ‘Do you work in this area’ and it usually leads to a description of where the person works and what they do.  I am learning people with a passion have usually identified their purpose or have discovered what they really want to be doing.  For some this translates into a hobby and for others a side job.  I find I am running into more and more people who have changed it up completely and fall into the leap of faith category. Each time I hear ‘it was a leap of faith’, my radar goes up.  There is much to learn from the people who say this as they have made great changes or uprooted everything in spite of the unknown and risks.   Those I have spoken with say what they do feels like a hobby and they can spend endless hours working on their projects and towards goals. Most say it can be challenging when you take a leap of faith; yet somehow the pieces fall into place.  Just recently, I saw a friend who gave up her job in sales to go into a completely new line of work and she is very content.  She did say her new life is not always ‘peaches and cream’ and she has no regrets.  She moved to the west coast and is learning a specific trade, scrapes by and is very happy.  Another friend decided he was not cut out for corporate America soon after college, started his own business, and has been driven since.  He said if a project never comes to fruition, he rarely gets discouraged because there are always new opportunities to focus on.  He noted his income sometimes fluctuates and it makes him worry, but he always keeps going.  I find the leap of faith people think about the next step instead of letting frustration or fear take over when something does not work out as planned.  I find when someone is doing what “feels” right he or she is usually excited to talk about their work and their learnings and experiences.  Those learnings and experiences can often be carried forward to the next thing.

When I hear leap of faith in a person’s story, it makes me feel as though it is a story intended for me to hear.  It makes me wonder when I will put myself in a position to look over the edge and say, ‘Ok now is the time.’ Predictability has always been very important to me as relates to my full time job.  I suppose this is indicative of my responsible, pragmatic side.  My paycheck is a consistent as is my business and my client base. It feels more like a means to an end versus something I jump out of bed for every day.  Though consistency and predictability are good, perhaps I need to find a better balance of being a risk taker without fear.  I am unsure if fear holds me back or if it is matter of timing or something else. How do I plant my feet firmly on the path to my purpose?  I may be moving the right direction right now and need to give myself more credit.  I do know one thing. I want to be the person who says, “I was working in a cubicle and one day decided I had an opportunity I was unable to pass up.  I took a leap of faith and I never looked back.”

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