I've been here before!
There have been various times in my life when I've felt as though I'm at a crossroads or some kind of junction, knowing that I need to take a different route, feeling that I need a change, but have lacked direction or self-belief or courage or determination (or a combination) to actually do anything different.
I've always been pretty risk averse so change doesn't come easy. I've also always been quite a compliant employee, following rules and procedures (that I sometimes don't really agree with) and generally doing as I'm told. I'm a worker, not a shirker. I'm a foot soldier, not a sergeant. I'm not a 'mover and shaker' type or a 'climb the business ladder' type. These are my thoughts. My beliefs about myself.
I work hard in my job and from time to time I have struggled with the workload. In May this year it came to a head and the demands that I'm expected to meet became more than I perceived I could cope with.
In January this year, we had already put our house on the market (and it sold straight away but we've been stuck in a chain) and had an offer accepted on a bungalow. This is a downsize and is with a view to reducing our outgoings and possibly for me to be able to reduce my working hours. I fully expected this to go to plan. But with the delay in completing, the demands at work remaining and increasing, I reached a point one morning where I just looked at my workload for the week, felt a sense of dread and just thought, "I can't do this right now." It was the right decision (for me, my colleagues and for the clients I work with) to take a step back. I spoke to my GP and Occupational Health and was also referred to a counsellor through work. To cut a long story short, I am signed off until 26th August with stress, anxiety and depression.
I agree that I feel stressed - overwhelmed by such a build up of pressure for so long. Certainly I feel anxious about the future, but I don't feel and never have felt depressed. What I do know though, is that I am at a crossroads again. But this one looks a little different. Or rather I am looking at it differently. On previous occasions, there has been no sign at the crossroads, or just a sign like the above image - not all that helpful.
bit of clue.
I am fortunate to be surrounded by a number of supportive family members and a close circle of encouraging, accepting and caring friends. Through one of these friends I was 'signposted' to a different kind of help: A Life Coach. (linked* with permission). I had a half hour free consultation and went away already feeling fired up for change! I hadn't realised how much I view things in black and white and miss the grey areas. Suddenly possibilities started to look more like probabilities. Because of my personal circumstances (not important to this blog) I agreed with my Coach to wait until after the house move to start my coaching. But just like a client on a Counselling / Psychotherapy waiting list, change is occurring simply because ... well... I'm not sure really - I guess a lightbulb has gone on!
Fast forward to this week - our house move is now imminent (this Friday all being well). I am packed. My craft and sewing stuff is packed away and I can't be bothered to run. It's very hot - currently 36 decrees C. But I'm not saying it's too hot to run. Other people are running. I'm owning my "don't want to run and feel uncomfortable right now!" So that has given me a window to reflect and write something. I'll be contacting my coach to get started once we've unpacked a few bits at the bungalow.
I don't know what the outcome or outcomes will be. But I doubt it will be a "one thing or the other thing" - it may be a bit of both or all. I'm excited about getting a different perspective. I'm not so scared of the uncertainty.
I've just realised that in writing this, the way I'm viewing the signpost has already changed. I can't find anything in clipart that is what I am picturing. Let me try to draw it!
Here we go....
OK, I think we can rule out drawing as a possible career change, but you get the idea! Pretty sure that there are many solutions and possibilities.
I'll write about my Coaching Journey (amongst other things) in this blog.