Four years ago I had to go to London for work.
Since I was over there, I decided to extend my trip and spend a few days in Paris for a long weekend by myself.
I had never been before.
It was just one in another long list of things I had done TRYING to feel better.
To feel something... anything.
I had poured all of my attention, effort and energy into work.
Climbing the ladder to success.
After getting the job I always wanted, I didn't feel any better.
So I change jobs.
Cut off all of my hair.
Bought a new house and moved.
And then, Paris.
Spending that time alone, in that incredible city with no one else but me, not even a TV, forced me to do something I had never really done before.
See Me. Beyond work.
I spent the days "getting lost" on the streets of Paris.
Popping in and out of cafes and just taking it all in.
Just me and my thoughts.
Turns out the thing that was missing in all of the drastic changes I had made, was to look inward.
If work wasn't the answer...
If all of these changes weren't the answer...
I gained so much perspective in that short trip.
I came back KNOWING that I wanted more out of life than work.
I could no longer try to fill myself up by giving all of myself away.
I needed more. Of me.
But who was I if I wasn't a workaholic?
What did I really want?
For decades I had been chasing fulfillment from my work. Pouring everything I had into it, so much so, that I had nothing else.
It was time for ANOTHER change. Except this time, it was going to be meaningful change. Lasting change.
Truly I didn't get it at first. But knowing I needed to show up more for myself, I sold my car.
I know, another DRASTIC change.
But this time, it was my desparate attempt to get more of that contemplation time with myself.
Selling my car meant walking to work 2 miles every day.
It meant leaving at a reasonable hour so that I could walk home those same 2 miles.
I listened to podcasts and music and sometimes just walked in silence.
It was the beginning to FIGURING IT ALL OUT.
To reclaiming, heck starting, my real life.
It took me two more years and a LOT of two steps forward and three steps back before I made the ultimate change..
TO DECIDE WHO I AM AND WHAT I WANT.
And then to become that version of me and start living by design instead of by default.
I am not my job.
I am not my hobbies.
And neither are you.
There is a whole world of AND out there for all of us, but we have to drop the one-dimensional focus on work.
Your work can be fulfilling but it can't fill you.
And I can help you.
If you are tired of taking a back seat to work.. Realizing everything you worked for is all you have...
It's time to reclaim your life. It doesn't mean breaking up with your job. Unless you want to.
You don't have to do all the drastic things I did.
You don't have to go to Paris.
But you may want to....