Q. I graduated from college, got a full time job, affordable apartment, pay my bills and have a five year plan to pay off my student loans. I like my job and the people I work with; I have a social life but I keep thinking…….”Is this my life?” Something is missing. I need your suggestions. —Amber
A. Amber also shared the following story: “I was so lucky while I was in college that I had the opportunity to study abroad. I spent one semester in France. I knew while I was there that I could see myself living in that beautiful country. I kind of put it on the back burner after I came home and focused on school, work and studying.”
“Now that I have graduated I have checked off all the boxes and feel proud of my accomplishments but I still feel very unsettled. And the thoughts of France keep popping in my mind.”
“It seems totally unrealistic and irresponsible to move to France when I have debt I need to pay off. But the thought of going to work everyday, coming home and doing it all over again doesn’t seem to be working for me. Maybe its not even France, maybe I could think about getting my masters, challenging myself. I have always been a very goal driven person.”
What is important about Amber’s story is her desire to grow, to color outside the lines but she has developed the belief that being responsible means you “you color inside the lines.” But its not working. She has checked off all the boxes on her old check list. But it appears she needs a new check list because she is stuck and showing symptoms of depression.
I shared with Amber my friends story: Janice wanted to be a nurse but her parents wanted her to be a lawyer. She went to law school, passed the bar, got her first job and hated being a lawyer. Prozac was not going to solve this problem. Janice went to nursing school, found a great job and also found a good life.
Amber this is YOUR LIFE and you have limitless possibilities. Don’t continue on a path that isn’t working when another path is available. Make your new check list and see what it looks like. Use a crayon! Write it on a napkin. Change can be a little scary but a little scary just might be worth it!!!