I think it’s safe to say, this time of year when so many are making grand plans for the new year, we all crave to ‘find the answer.’
What are we meant to do in life? Are we close? Or did we miss the mark? And what do we need to do in order to get there?
All you know for sure is, you feel restless.
I get it. I actually feel doubt several times a day. And sometimes I’ll wake up at night and feel it too.
But then other times I know exactly what I’m suppose to do. It feels right when time stands still and you’re totally in your element.
But then, something goes wrong or maybe you’re feeling you aren’t doing enough or earning enough and you start doubting again. Sound familiar?
So how do you know where you’re going and what you’re doing?
I’ve been self employed for nearly all my adult life so I’ve always called my own shots. I like it that way, but self employment can be rocky too. If you take a vacation, there’s no pay. If you wish for benefits, you have to buy them.
But without a doubt, I know self employment is for me. Being self employed has much to do with believing you can do whatever it is you set out to do. And then do it.
I suppose that’s why I slipped into blogging so effortlessly. If I like something, I just do it. Then I test myself and see how far I can take it while still enjoying it. And if it starts to feel like work, I change things up to like it again. Always testing, always trying, always inventing and recreating the wheel. I have to say I’m more restless if I DON’T change something than if the same thing is ahead of me. I crave change.
I told someone at my day job not long ago that I found it hard to letter a vehicle on both sides, because I’d already done it once on one. And that I stayed up way too late at night because it was hard to turn all the fun off.
Feeling rather silly for not being able to completely control how I was feeling, he said…
“That’s because you’re creative. Normal won’t do. Your wheels are always turning, ready to crank out the next big idea. I envy you.”
Wow. And here I thought I was just a Facebook addict! 🙂
So here’s a little check list I give myself when I start doubting what I’m doing with my life… see if it doesn’t chime in with you as well.
What do you LOVE to do?
It’s kinda really that easy. Dream of your perfect day. Then make that day happen. Then make it happen again. And again. Then figure out a way to monetize it. Suddenly… you’re doing it!
But wait! Say you KNOW what you want to do, but you don’t know how? Well, that’s when learning comes into play. Take a class, work with a friend, create an online group… and get learning so you can do more.
Give it time.
If you’re looking for a way to earn income, don’t expect it overnight. So it’s safe to say, don’t leave the day job until your cool job is earning more than the day job. That is, if you need the money. If you don’t and you have financial support, run like the wind! But still, don’t expect the income to come quickly. My good friend reminds me a plan takes about 5 years to materialize. He’s been kinda right.
Continue to change… or morph.
I had a very successful company. I actually gave it all I got. And had an employee as well. But one day my son came into the picture and my passion changed overnight. So I coasted with the job. I woke up 20 years later wondering what on earth happened to me. I loved my son, but I didn’t love the job any longer. What happened?!
I changed. But I didn’t change what I was doing to continue to love it. In other words, I didn’t continue to learn… or morph. Be willing to learn new things all the time, because THAT will ultimately change your game and get you where you desire to go. If you aren’t learning, you aren’t changing, and you’ll stay right where you are.
Read an entire post on morphing HERE.
Boy, that blogger sure has a nice camera! Doesn’t compare to yours, does it? No wonder you can’t get the shots! And how about all that traffic they get? How on earth do they get so many comments? Or wow, their social media numbers went through the roof! Whatever did you do wrong to not be there?
I get it. I’m guilty too. But know what? YOU will grow where YOUR strengths are.
It’s ok to be happy for another and learn how others do things. But your life is yours. Your circumstances are different. And so is your own plan. Be willing to learn, but do what works for you in YOUR time. And feel no shame nor guilt! Compare you to YOU so you see growth, but not against another. That isn’t even applicable.
Maybe you’re already there.
I was at a friend’s one time and feeling particularly great. No reason why really, just felt good. We broke into a conversation and I said something to the effect that I didn’t know what to do ‘next’. And she pointed out…
“I think you’re already there!”
That taught me to appreciate right where I was, even though my story was far from finished. I believe there’s a season for everything. Maybe you aren’t suppose to be anywhere else at the moment because your family needs you more? You’re not ready? You aren’t to head in that direction? Be kind to yourself and allow yourself to just be, too!
Rather than promising yourself all these resolutions, or extremely lofty goals, why not strike out and just find what makes your heart happy?
Maybe that’s all that was missing all along.
58 thoughts on “What are we meant to do in life?”
Wow that hit home, did you climb into my head???!!! Thanks…..
Thanks you for the advice and encouragement…and for sharing your story! I hope this year brings you much happiness!
Actually the first complete blog I think I have ever read*) No one has said it simpler or better. You go girl and keep on going and sharing!!
Nicely done! I know that I am here to tell people funny stories, but that means stand-up comedy (which I do for free) or teaching (which I do for minimum wage). I can’t monetize my silliness, because there isn’t much of a market, but it sure is fun!
Kirby I would totally pay you for your silliness! 😉
What spot on thoughts and perspective.I especially appreciate your friends thought “maybe you are already there”. To many times we are always wanting or doing more that we pass right by this .
Wow! That is exactly how i’ve been feeling. Time to morph! Thanks!
What a great post! Thanks for the encouragement. Some days I feel like I’m all over the place and doing a lot of things just OK. This year, I’m concentrating on what my strengths are and making those things better knowing that the other places will fall into place where they need to be. Happy New Year to you!
I think sometimes we all need a little reminder to stop and smell the flowers. To breath and know everything has a time and a place.
Good morning Donna, WOW!!! that was an amazing read! You know how when you are really hungry , you finally take time to eat and then say , “you inhaled your food”.
That is how I feel like I was reading , couldn’t get enough ,fast enough!
I too crave change! I call it the bkessing & the curse of the creative soul.
I often find myself being my own worst critic, and can get so caught up in what’s up ahead that I miss the right now.
I truly believe I was meant to see this this morning 😉
Thank you for sharing, and for the inspiration!
Thank you so much for this! I soooo needed it. I am trying to use my “creativity” to earn enough money to pay for health insurance when my husband retires from his job. Thanks for posting all the feelings that I have now and making me feel its “normal”. (lol)
I swear you wrote it directly to ME!!!! You truly spoke to my soul, thank you. I find myself doubting, comparing and wondering if I’m doing the right thing. Your words put me at rest ~ I NEED to remind myself I’m at my perfect place at this moment ~ Thank you!!!!!!
Wow I have to say that this is what I was having an issue with TODAY and feeling restless as well. Thank you so much for sharing this today, as I believe it was just what I needed to hear. I am sure many others feel the same way out there, even worse is this time of year when “new” things need to be looked at.
Thanks again for sharing and have a blessed day. 🙂
Great article/blog/putting your life into words! It really spoke to me! I’m totally guilty of the whole comparison thing!
You nailed it! My biggest issue is doubting myself–those nagging little voices in my head that keep telling me that a million other people do what I do and probably do it better. Plus I am so impatient that waiting for results is torture. I also find myself “competing” in the sense that “They are already doing this and that and I should be doing that to improve my blog too” The I get overwhelmed and scattered and nuts.
I decided to step back this year. Prioritize the shop and blog, learn what I need to do and take my time incorporating all the other “stuff” and to most of all, be patient with myself!
Thanks for the insight girlfriend–it was badly needed!
Keep doing what your doing because you do it all so well!
That was fantastic – Thanks for sharing I needed to hear some positive words from someone else. I just started a new adventure after ending one a few months ago. I wasn’t sure if it was the right move but deep down I knew it was I just allowed others to cloud my creative process. Starting something from scratch can be such a slow process but this time I find it’s different because I’m in an avenue that allows me to be creative in all I do. The creative person is always thinking – I completely agree – if they’re not they just wilt… We’re like flowers that strive to keep blooming. Thanks for this post it was a real blessing to my morning.
Donna, thank you so much for posting this. I needed the encouragement.
Hip hip hallelujah ! Pray, plan, persevere, play and laugh. Laugh at our failed attemps, laugh at our successes and laugh for the pure joy of hearing the sound of our own voices. Voices which sometimes are not very encouraging or supportive …our own inner doubts. A new day, a new year, new dreams and new beginnings. Learning to step into the unknown, learning to grasp the excitement of what’s around the next bend and learning to be kinder to those we meet on our journey and more grateful for the experience. Your words are spot on, blessings for a soul prospering New Year, my friend.
I want every sweet friend I know to read this blog…it is the meaning of my motto…
Be Powerful…Not Pitiful…!!!
Donna – This post sure hit the nail on the head for me! I want to continue to do what I love, to learn, grow and give it time (not easy for me to do) and to know that I am here at this place for a reason and for this season of my life. Thank you for writing this post!
Speaks to my journey in my jewelry business! Encouragement to my heart! Thanks Donna!
thanks donna! all good advise.
i really appreciate the part about staying up way too lat at night because it is hard to turn off all the fun.
when i was a kid my mom used say that it was hard for me to go to sleep at night because “i thought i might miss something fun”
you friend is right. i think that is the way creative brains work. . . and NORMAL just doesn’t work for us. sometimes i look over at my husband who at 9 or 10 pm is in blissful sleep, and i so wish i could turn ‘it’ off and join him. but no matter what time i finally do get to sleep, the next morning, i am always ready to do it all over again.
thanks for the reminder that this is ‘our’ normal. and it is good.
have a creative new year donna
My prayer this morning was to keep my mind from wandering…..from one project to another. I asked for “restrain” from blog viewing and facebook. While I gave my Lord thanks for all my talents, I asked for “focus.”
And then I read your post……..thank you, for your truthfulness and sharing. And while my prayers still apply, I realize that I am ok……my restlessness is just part of how He made me……….
I knew when I saw today’s post titlie that I needed to read every word and take it to heart. Thank you for the words of reality and encouragement.
Donna, it is amazing. You could simply share your great tutorials and projects or your beautiful photography with your following…but you choose to share so much more. Advice, encouragement, your own struggles. I love that your blog offers so much and your voice is so real. I would read your blog just to be inspired by your cool and eclectic style yet I find I read now as much for guidance. I can’t help like feeling I have always been a misfit toy and with the blog world I have found the island of misfits! All those quirky individualist homey skills we all have….you amaze me with what is possible. I am hoping your confidence and perseverance will rub off on me!! Thanks again:)
…hmmm…being that this is the 3rd time this week that I’ve read something right along these lines, I think it’s a big ‘ole message for me to get going on my dreams : ) Love your blog and your ENCOURAGEMENT : ) Thanks for sharing!
I’ve followed your blog for over a year and have found this recent post to be the reason I DO. You say the things we all feel. And that is such a gift – to know none of us are so different. Then to throw in some creativity helps the process along too! Love the tutorials.
Thank-you, Donna. Read this, and was drawn in like ‘a moth to a flame’. What I needed more than another great project, today. Even read all the replies, and they spoke volumes to me!
Awesome writing Donna. Such great advice. I needed that kick-in-the-butt so to speak and this did it. Here’s to your continued success.
Perfect……that is all.
This resonates so well with me! Thanks for sharing!
Hi Donna! I am so inspired by your website, your words, and your creativity.
I am a mother of three children that are all in their twenties, and have left our home. All or most of my life, I have enjoyed being creative, and hunting for treasures that most people find useless. I have taken pride in my eagerness to help others, and make them feel special – whether by talking with them or helping them find their way. The strange thing is, that now that I am 50 (YIKES)—–I am an empty nester with my hubby of 33 years. I am unsure how to proceed! I know that may sound strange—but I would love to start a BLOG—I just am not a tech-savy person. I am in the midst of re-charging my life. I feel that I am being called to do something BIGGER—-(than my day job—nursing)…and focus on what is passionate to me. That is helping people, being creative for myself and for others to enjoy. I guess, I am asking for your advice, your knowledge, and more importantly your “insight”.
I have never reached out to anyone like this before….so I am feeling a bit “exposed” telling a complete stranger my “plans, fears, and concerns”.!!!!!!!!!!
I lookf forward to your reply…I am just touched by your creativity and your kind words.
All of this is great advice. Thank You.
Give it time… that is the one thing that is very hard since I am not the most patient person in the world.
I have days where I want to totally give up and then the day comes where I tell myself if I work hard enough I can do this.
Five years actually seems to be reasonable. I will keep plugging along.
Happy New Year!
Wonderful inspiring post that came at a perfect time for me………thank you for sharing your thoughts and insights!
Thank you so much for this post. It resignates in me. The insecurities and the fear. But I will press forward and do what I love.
Well, that just hit the nail on the head…I’ve spent the last 2 months trying to decide which direction to go. Do I advance in nursing, or do I try to grow my crafty/bloggy hobby into something profitable? I can’t do both AND keep my day job(s), as proven by last semester. Its so hard to decide what to be when I grow up!
I love visiting your blog. This is a really great post and it came at the perfect time.
Have a wonderful New Year!
Thanks for this inspirational push — but most of all the honest timeline! Congrats on getting to do what you love everyday!
All the way from warm(to hot) Australia. I so agree with your statement, just do what makes you happy! I’m only 52, fighting cancer for the 3rd time in nearly 9 years, and this time it’s incurable, and inoperable. But i don’t want to waste a minute of a day! I’m like you, I have so many things i want to do,that i can’t sleep sometimes! I say to my husband “sleeping is such a waste of time, i want to get on with tomorrow!!!”
Your website, and the others that I’ve gotten on to are so great at getting me motivated to try new ideas, and my home is looking and feeling great because of it. I have so much fun getting ideas from you girls, i look forward to creating new things. It’s a hobby, and takes my mind of things that could otherwise bring me down. Yours and Marion ( Miss Mustard Seed), are my favorite sites. Thank you both for inspiring me that i’m still useful, and can still be creative! Have a safe, happy and healthy 2014!
Best wishes, Jenny
I love, love this post! Actually I love everything about your blog.
oh, that was just what I needed to read this morning……..I’m so glad to hear others and know some of the things going through my head are shared by others……that makes me feel so much better. Don’t get me wrong, I really like to be an original, but that can be lonely too. Keep up the great encouraging words, you have a gift and I have followed you for a while now. You were the first blog I found, love your style. And of course this first blog opened up to seeing other blogs and I’m hooked!! So now this has opened up a place that I have been slowly edging my way toward. Doing baby steps, because that is what I can do for now, but always searching and seeking to find me and giving me the time to do so.
I am so happy I just came across this post! Its like everything Ive been feeling and thinking the past week you just wrote about! It makes me feel better to know I am not alone with these feelings. I am a hair stylist and have been self employed for 10 years and recently moved to Los Angeles to work in entertainment! I see so many successful people who are so creative, confident, and TALENTED in their craft, it can be very intimidating. This is coming from someone who is very secure and confident in what I do, too!
I am growing and learning as I go… trying new ways of making money, networking and always wondering what “if” i miss this opportunity or “how” to make things happen. I am just starting a blog/website about beauty and Hair, it is hard! It is expensive and I am a perfectionist! I see these beautiful blogs (like yours) and want mine to be just as wonderful.. but it does not happen over night. I dont have the fancy camera, the coding knowledge or fantastic writing skills, but like you said, if you LOVE what you do, it sure does make it easier to stick with! Just know your work and blogs like this touch peoples lives! Thank you for that! 🙂
I totally feel the same way as you! I have been trying , well reading books on how to start a blog and it seems so hard. I also know exactly what its like to break into the business. It can be challenging but well worth the friends and the experiences you’ll have. L.A. can be fun but scary at the same time. Its hard not to compare yourself but just know you are unique in every way. There is no single person who is exactly like you. You just keep networking and get yourself out there. Can’t wait to see if you respond. ~ Larissa
love that you put all of you into your blog. We all seem to be so restless, coulda shoulda blues, not good enough thoughts run wild. Thanks for saying it straight.
This is exactly what I needed to hear. I think I already started on this path for 2014, and so far so good. It is so nice to read an affirmation of these thoughts from someone I admire, and who has walked that path I am laying out for myself. I love what you say about coming up with your Dream Day and then making it happen, again and again. That is powerful stuff! Happy New Year friend. -Karen
Ok you sold me and talked directly to my heart. This year is all about change for me and thogh it is quite EASY to get caught up in the “she has a better blog with better furnture and an AWESOME house!!” routine, I get what your saying and am determined to live by it this year. Hey, 400 followers ain’t bad..haha that’s way more people than I have friends so I’ll take it.
I loved your post and just had to tell you!
Excellent posting! I think you’ve been reading my mind…
Just want to say I found your site here yesterday and am loving it so much. I do a feature on Sundays called “Shout Out Sunday” on my blog and I would like to feature this site, this page in fact, tomorrow. Thanks for your words of wisdom, too. Very good advice.
I totally needed this! Its 4:05am and I haven’t been to sleep. I’ve been thinking about so many different things in my life. So I’ve been praying. I got voted after I prayed and decided to get on pinterest. I ten discovered your Travel Trailer Door fixing post and so I stated to explore more. I love your posts!! You are doing fabulous work, don’t forget that. You have touched my life in a period of an hour! I can’t imagine all the others you have touched with your posts. Thanks for the encouraging words. Your new Fan, Larissa
Wow that’s uplifting and empowering. Thanks for sharing your story. 🙂
Well said! I agree with every point. I’ve found the hardest part of running your own business is the doubt or questioning. One day you can feel on top of the world and like you’re really doing it and the next…down in the dumps. We can’t expect to see results overnight though and it’s important to ride it out if it’s what you really love.
Thank you so much for writting that! It is good to remember that we have to give us the right to be ourselves…
Seems you’ve touched a nerve with a lot of us! … Apparently there’s more of us than I imagined. Its almost like you have given me permission to just be. And take the time I need to figure it out. It’ll take time, (we’ve all heard that!) But are hard pressed to wait. Probably cause the world is moving so so fast at times, its hard to keep up. Well I think its time to get off the ride, and find my own pace. Thanks, for making me think, and in around about way, reminding me, It is what it is, “when” it is, and to Relax, and “Enjoy” the ride. … I was meant to find this. Have a Great Day.
Thank-you so much for writing this post. Unlike the others that have posted a comment so far, I don’t fully understand it – it didn’t ‘speak to me’, but I am trying to understand. My entire adult life has been directed by my knee-jerk reactions to the latest crisis or upheaval (ie: a marriage, a divorce, countless jobs, etc, etc.) It seems like I’ve always been too busy both emotionally and financially trying to keep the raft from tipping over! I have always been so busy accomplishing what needs to be done, that there isn’t time left over for hobbies or wants. So, how do you find out what you love to do? All I can picture for my ‘perfect day’ is sleeping in! After that, I’m afraid it’s a blank. :/
Laurie, it sounds as if you are in desperate need of some down time to help you discover what you love to do. If you’re always seemingly putting out fires without enjoying life, there’s a huge gap that’s waiting to be filled. My passion came by hard times, I basically had to start over in order to discover what I needed. Pretty amazing.
I vote to schedule leisure into your life. Because once you nail this whatever it is, you’ll never work a day in your life again. 🙂
Well said. Sometimes rereading something you all ready know, puts you right again.
It reminds you that you are right where you should be and just enjoy it in stead of compareing. Something I have a bad habit of doing. I all ways think I should be farther a long than I am. Thank so much!
Donna, that was pretty awesome. Are we living the same life? Well, you know what i mean. You have made your dream come true. I am just starting so thank you for each and every blog post, tutorial, idea, inspirational post. You don’t know how much it helps me along my journey. I couldn’t do without people like you. I am ADD and a creative so can you imagine!! Sometimes i have 5 different projects going. Yikes!