Doing life differently is so unbelievably hard. There I’ve said it.

Doing life differently is so unbelievably hard

I harp on about change, embracing the unconventional and doing life differently. My entire business has been built around it and in many respects my life has mirrored the work I do today. Or maybe it’s been my sheer refusal to toe the line that has built my soapbox over time. On that journey I’ve seen so many people fail to reach their potential, sell themselves short or think small that it’s spurred me on to spread the experience, the techniques, to start the conversation. But this week it has been so unbelievably difficult that I’ve gone underground, feeling an Imposter or even worse, a failure.

It was supposed to be a joyous occasion. The sense of victory to see the kids back to school and have a breather in my home office. Some space to think. Instead I nosedived into some dark quicksand. The more I resisted the deeper I went. I felt tired, defeated, demotivated. The start of a new term, but I didn’t want to join the fanfare. My summer had been filled with writing, trying to grow my business and creating a social media strategy. I had worked in hotels, at my mum’s house, by the canoe pond and indoor play places in order to keep every plate on its stick. I thought, stuff personal talent, stuff being original and colouring outside the lines, because -quite frankly- what is the point of it all? It’s hard. It’s lonely.

A friend of mine smiled and said she was relieved at the fact that I -like any other normal human being- suffer these kinds of dark tunnels also. It helped me only marginally, because I didn’t want other people to see me like this. I wanted to fly the flag for doing life differently, for celebrating talent and creating extraordinary ways that it can find success. This was my business card. This is what I had been doing in my practice and in companies; my voice confident, my case studies convincing. I had just written a book about it!

This week brought me to my knees. I decided to hide. Maybe swimming against the current makes you so tired in the end that it’s easier to hold onto a lilo and go where the stream takes you. How lovely, no needing to think, to plan, to decide where to go. So, I lay on the sofa and stared into space. Doing life differently could do one. 

Then this happened:

  • My phone pinged and a client who I’ve done a 6 month Do Life Differently programme with sent me an invite to join him on the app Polar Steps. He was taking the trip of a lifetime to the North Cape. His message was thankful and heart-warming.
  • I received a thank you from a client who said that I “saved her life”. I had no idea. Then she had no idea how much her message helped me.
  • I received a VIP invite from a client to the opening of her Studio. I had worked with her to transition from meaningless jobs to setting up her own creative business.
  • I received 4 great contacts from Chris Strub, who I had interviewed for my Podcast. He said he loves what I do and generously connected me with other great people I could interview. And I spoke to the Tweetinggoddess Sam Kelly always caring and thoughtful in life and business reassuring me that I wasn’t alone.

So, I was at the foot of another mountain and the top seemed a bridge too far. This was most likely where most people do in fact throw in the towel because the climb is too steep. Now you know I’m no perfect example of how it’s supposed the be done. I fight and lose some battles too. But I took the small blessings that came my way and squeezed them for every inch of their encouragement. It feels very hard still, but I’m coming back. More real, maybe, knowing that if I can persevere here myself, then there will be more people I can assist.

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