As of today, I have only one week left of full time work.
Am I scared? Hell yeh.
Surviving on no income at all is going to be difficult. We are lucky that we have some reserves to keep us going for a short time.
Am I excited? Hell yeh.
Not having to worry each day how much stress or anxiety will impact my day is going to be wonderful.
But I face the future with some trepidation.
Last night I was flicking through a book by Wayne Dyer called “Your Erroneous Zones”. It is the first book he ever wrote and I have had it sitting in my book pile for some time now. However the other night, I read an email from Hay House in which Wayne talks about a quote in one chapter of this book. It interested me so I thought I would pull the book out and read this chapter.
Dr Dyer prefaces the book by asking what descriptors we give ourselves. You know the “I am” statements we all do. He explains that whilst most of these in themselves are not harmful to us, many of things we label or describe ourselves as do us harm.
It’s the concept of the words you speak coming to fruition.
It also encompasses the power of the mind and it’s control over your life.
I read a meme the other night about the mind and it really struck a chord with me.
Unfortunately for most of us, our own worst enemy is our mind.
So I want to recap what my mind has been telling me this week and my answers to my mind (who this week is proving the about quote quite true).
- Quitting work is a stupid idea (not true)
- How are you going to make ends meet? (good question but we’ll get through it)
- You know you’re going to miss it (I will miss a lot of the people and the clients but I will still see them around)
- You’re not going to be able to live like you used to (true. sacrifices will need to be made)
- You’re imagining everything (no I’m not)
- They will replace you with someone more qualified (true. the person they are looking at hiring has way more accounting qualifications than me but they don’t have the disability experience)
- The fact they are replacing you with someone more qualified means they wanted you to be better (who knows if this is true or not but there is nothing I can do to change that)
- What do you expect to do with yourself each day (I will write. I will get my house in order. I will spend time with my family. I will bake. I will cook good meals. I will be a ‘proper’ wife and mother once again)
- How will you make money (I don’t know but I know we’ll be alright)
As you can see my mind has become my enemy, causing me to doubt myself and my decisions. I have to remind myself that I have the support of my whole family in this decision and that it wasn’t made lightly or without some very obvious signs that it was the right thing to do.
I have been asked if I have the champagne on ice in readiness for next Friday afternoon. The short answer is no.
Whilst leaving my job will be a relief, it will also end a part of my life that had some wonderful highlights.
So back to my reading of the book.
Chapter 6 of the book is called ‘Exploring the Unknown’. I thought it was appropriate for me to read this section at this point in my life. In this chapter, Dr Dyer explores the concept of “Only the insecure strive for security”. Okay, he got me with that. Both the insecurity bit and the striving for security. He goes on to explain that the desire for security is a result of the conditioning of society. Let’s face it, we all want to feel safe and challenging that safety net is a scary prospect.
He then goes on to talk about those who stepped out of their comfort zones and made life a better place not just for themselves but for others. People such as Thomas Edison and Winston Churchill spring to mind. Then there were people who did not avoid the unknown – Da Vinci, Beethoven, Einstein, Galileo… the list is large.
Nobody who remains within their comfort zone makes great advances. (And this is in no way having a go at those who are wonderful, caring human beings who are happy right where they are. This is merely my take on where I am in my own life).
As you read further into the chapter, the question is asked whether you are rigid or spontaneous? (I’m a bit of both really. I thrive on routine but sometimes I like to be spontaneous. Actually I feel alive when I act spontaneously).
The author lists several ‘fear of the unknown’ behaviours that I used as a measuring stick for myself including:
- Always eating the same kinds of foods and not trying new ones (nope not me. I’m adventurous with food but I still haven’t tried a ‘green’ smoothie yet).
- Wearing the same style and kinds of clothes (I wear whatever fits really)
- Reading the same newspapers and magazines that support your views on life (I’ll read anything)
- Watching the same kind of movies or tv shows and shutting out anything that might oppose your point of view of the world (I’ll watch anything except blood and gore)
- Living in the same neighbourhood, city or state because your parents and grandparents have always lived there (lost count of how many places I’ve lived in my life)
- Refusing to listen to ideas or viewpoints that you don’t share (I always see two sides to every argument)
- Being afraid to try a new activity because you don’t think you’ll be any good (ask my sewing group how good my sewing skills are 😳 )
- Compulsive achieving in school or job (got me)
- Avoiding anyone who is different to you e.g. gay, muslim, indigenous, punk, goth etc. (Nope, I’m pretty eclectic in my friend’s lists)
- Staying with the same job even though you dislike it (Well we all know the answer to that one)
- Staying in a marriage that’s not working (can you spell D-I-V-O-R-C-E-D ?)
- Taking vacations or holidays in the same place, same hotel etc. each year (road trip anyone?)
- Only doing the things you do well (see comment about sewing above)
- Measuring things in monetary terms (never have done it)
- Striving for importance e.g. labels on clothes, lifestyle, position at work (guilty as charged)
- An inability to alter a plan or course of action (I like to think I’m pretty flexible)
- Being preoccupied with time (apart from the fact that there is never enough of it, I don’t let it rule my life)
- Dismissing things you’ve never tried e.g. yoga, meditation, mah jongg (tried them all)
- Viewing sex without imagination (sometimes it’s just easier that way)
- Not expanding your circle of friends (not guilty of that)
- Staying with one person all night at a party because you feel safer that way (okay, I’ve done that before)
- Not participating in conversations because of fear of what others will think of your views (anyone that knows me knows I’ve got an opinion on everything)
- Condemning yourself if you don’t succeed (I was doing quite well up until this point and then the big ‘wrong answer’ buzzer went *dong dong*)
Wayne Dyer uses this list as only a few examples and encourages readers to make their own lists. He offers strategies for breaking out and becoming spontaneous. He encourages everyone to try something new each day and to step into the unknown.
But perhaps the words that hit me the most were contained in his last sentence of this chapter.
And that my friends sums up where I am right now. I don’t have much of an idea where my life is headed but I have taken the first steps.
Lao Tzu famously said “The journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step”.
So, I am on my way.