Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.
– Steve Jobs
This August I quit my job in a position I held for over 9 years. I was acting on a very deep gut feeling that I had to leave. Staying was no longer an option, I literally had to get out of there and do what my heart was calling me to do or a part of me would die. I had the notion to leave way before August but something always kept me there….I say “something” obviously it was fear. Still, my inner voice remained and became stronger and louder. Between that and a few things that happened at the office… I literally felt pushed out of the nest.
When I gave my two week notice, my boss called me crazy. She honestly thought I was losing my mind. Who, in their right mind,would leave a secure job of 9 years at the age of 42 in the middle of a recession without a backup plan other than her small 401k? I am sure it did seem crazy…especially since only a month or so earlier I had announced I needed to use a week of vacation to meet a man in Budapest I had been talking with over the Internet! Another co-worker asked if I was having a mid-life crisis? And you know, maybe I was. It is not an accident this phrase exists.I think Around the age of 40 most of us start to recognize that our time is limited. We start to evaluate our life and what we have in front of us. I didn’t like what I saw and I knew…for me…. things needed to change. I was indeed wasting my life working for someone else’s dream when I knew what my own dream was and continued to ignore it.
Of course, it reminded me of painting. How many times had I been painting when an image wanted to show up on the page that I didn’t understand or disapproved of because it wasn’t pleasing to my eye?? Or…here’s a big one….because I didn’t know how to paint it! Generally I know that when I don’t surrender to what wants to come I feel miserable inside and out. I have learned that until I surrender to the image or color or whatever is asking to be painted…I am just going through the motions and that edgy dissatisfaction does not go away. So why not in life?? If I am learning to trust my intuition in painting…maybe it’s not so different in “real” life. Once again painting was showing me how to live.
So….I now spend my days doing what I absolutely love. My world is full of vibrant color. Just the other day I painted with a friend, her daughter and her mother. Three generations there in the studio painting. It was magic! I don’t know how this will all play out and sometimes it doesn’t make sense and seems a little crazy…but I do it anyway. Oh and the guy I met in Budapest…..6 months and going strong. I am learning to trust what wants to come onto my page and I am continually delighted.
In peace and gratitude,
PS – We have a workshop scheduled Saturday 10.22 and I would love to paint with you!!
Let us know if you’d like to sign up: firstname.lastname@example.org