I’ve wanted to write this blog post for weeks. It’s been on my to-do list for weeks. There has been an aching of anxiety deep in the pit of my stomach for weeks.
I deeply wanted to write from a place of honesty, authenticity and clarity. I searched. I couldn’t find that place within myself.
I would have moments of inspiration. The lessons of my journey over the last couple of months that I wanted to share to inspire others to take a leap of faith and then to trust their gut to let go if in the end it wasn’t right— but as quickly as those moments would come, they would vanish.
I would push off writing for another day. I would do it another day. Another day.
The truth? I’m still sorting through the sharp, raw and jagged fragmented pieces of my experience moving to San Diego and then returning home three months later. Yes, I have returned to Boston.
I’m still sorting through the experiences that ignited and exposed a deeply lonely place within myself I was sure I healed. A lonely place that I still strive to fill with outward career success that only feeds more deeply into the cycle of loneliness.
The experiences that sent my health into a tailspin and brought me to a place I never thought I would revisit.
The experiences where I temporarily lost who I was and that left me feeling completely uprooted with no earth beneath me.
These experiences are still swirling around in me. They are raw. They are real.
Four months ago I quit my job in Boston and three months ago I left my family, friends and community behind to move to San Diego to embark on a new job opportunity. A new chapter.
I was craving an adventure. I wanted to shake things up. I was inspired by the constructed image of living carefree at the beach and thought every difficult life decision I’ve been wrestling with and terrified to make—leaving the comforts of a typical 9-5 to pour myself into my passion for health coaching and truly commit to building my business— would magically melt away by warm temperatures and beautiful sunsets.
My difficult decisions didn’t disappear when I moved to San Diego. In fact, when I removed the comforts of my life that allowed me to stay content by playing it safe, the fear around those decisions magnified.
I moved to San Diego and I lost myself. I stopped cooking. I stopped practicing yoga. I stopped running. I stopped sleeping. I stopped feeding my soul. I stopped feeling alive.
Instead I worked. I worked all night. I worked weekends. I worked until I ran myself into the ground and my body once again told me enough.
I thought if I just worked and crossed everything off my to-do list, the lump in my throat and pit in my stomach screaming at me to stop, screaming at me to wake up, telling me that this wasn’t right would just disappear. It didn’t work.
My days in San Diego were filled with fear and anxiety. I would wake up in panic. I dreaded my to-do list, but feared failing. I feared quitting. I feared being 3,000 miles away from family, friends and my support system without a job. I feared what people would think. I feared what I would do next. Mostly, I feared not being perfect.
Thankfully the screaming inside me to wake up became louder than the fear that controlled my everyday life and I walked away. I quit.
There is a laundry list of reasons why my job in San Diego wasn’t a good fit and how it quickly became a toxic environment, but to focus on the external and ignore my own internal reaction is to sell myself short.
It is simply a distraction from the real work. It is a distraction from my own truth.
The real work is learning how to stay centered and grounded amidst turmoil. To truly know that my own worth is greater than any one experience, one job, one title.
The real work is learning how to say no to opportunities that do not serve my higher purpose.
The real work is to tune in and to trust the answer. The real work is to trust.
I knew my job wasn’t a good fit before I even left for San Diego, but I brushed it off for the thrill and excitement of something new. I ignored my own internal compass, which knew right from wrong. Instead I told myself, “I just need to settle in.” “New jobs are always stressful.”
I’m now back in Boston sifting through these fragmented experiences. Healing will take time. Getting healthy again will take time and feeling the earth underneath me again will take time. I’m ready to be patient.
What I do know is that I’m incredibly grateful for the experience, for the renewed sense of purpose it brought about and that I’m ready to begin again.