Updated: Sep 30, 2020
I can remember it like it was yesterday: weekends consisting mostly of long days driving kids from soccer practice to birthday parties to sleepovers. There were times when I rarely got out of the car and by the time I did I was so exhausted I could hardly move. During the week, I commuted 60-90 minutes each way to work, came home, cooked dinner, helped with homework and bed time only to get back up and do it all over again.
Sound familiar? There were many days that blurred from one to the next as - on autopilot - I did what I had to do to make sure my kids had what they needed to become healthy, happy adults.
Of course I did it willingly. I believe the job of ‘mom’ is one of the most important ones I’ll ever hold. But I also knew that there was something more for me. Somehow I had lost part of myself during the process of dedicating that part of my life to taking care of my family.
I didn’t know who I was anymore. What I was passionate about. What my purpose was outside of being a mom.
I started thinking about my life beyond mom. What would I do when my ‘job’ of raising my kids was ‘done’? When they no longer relied on me for everything? I realized I would be left with the time and space to begin to contemplate who I was and what came next. And it kind of terrified me.
But somehow deep inside I knew I had to do something. I had to get off autopilot and start living with intention.
So where did I start? I needed clarity about what was important to me and what my next steps should be so I just started asking myself questions. What was important to me? What inspired me? What was I good at? I called it being in inquiry. Those questions allowed me to really explore what was possible for me.
And then I sat with those questions. I took long walks where I thought about them. I journaled, I meditated but mostly I just listened. It didn’t happen overnight. It’s a process. But through that process comes the true gold.
I was surprised by what I learned.
For example, I never considered myself entrepreneurial, but I discovered my deep seated calling to help others which led me first to start Ripple Kids and later, my coaching business. I never would have even considered taking those steps if I wasn’t so clear on my values and my commitment to make an impact on the world. To find my purpose. And I found that through inquiry.
I realize now that I was not unique in my apprehension about who I was beyond being a mom. In fact, many of the moms I talk to have anxiety about what comes next. Making that transition from thinking of everyone else, to start thinking about yourself and your own needs can be challenging. It’s like exercising a new muscle. Even knowing where to start can feel overwhelming.
If this sounds like you, I invite you to take the first step by simply starting with opening your mind about what’s possible for you. Disregard everything you think you know to be true about yourself and reset to a beginners mind as if you are meeting you for the first time. Challenge yourself. Push yourself out of your comfort zone, stretch your boundaries and spend some time really reflecting on how you want this next chapter to look.
You may discover things about yourself that you never considered before. You’ll get clarity on what’s important to you, what your values are, how you want to spend your time and who you want to spend it with.
As you shed the role of mom, you may uncover a woman you never knew existed.
I learned a long time ago that life is short and being on autopilot wouldn’t get me to a life of purpose and passion. Once I recognized that and was able to start choosing how I wanted to live, to live with intention, everything shifted.
If you are ready to start living your life instead of letting your life live you, then consider downloading the inquiry exercise I’ve attached below. Post in the comments what you have learned and visit us on the Facebook page
I look forward to hearing from you!
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