Now What? Opening Up to the Possibilities of What Comes Next…

 

The premise for this blog grew out of my desire to have more joy and fulfillment in my life, while acknowledging I had no idea what that looked like or how to get there.  

So much of life is out of our control, yet our experience of reality is directly influenced by our actions, decisions, and thoughts.  The future is shaped not only by our circumstances, but also by what we choose in response.   

What’s possible depends in large part on how willing you are to take a risk, even if you’re not entirely certain about what you want.  

So I invite you to explore with me the fundamental concept of what comes next, along with its related themes of commitment, action, and doing it scared.

 

What’s Your Dream?

I’ve run across this question a lot lately…through coaching, podcasts, and conversations.  Even when not actively trying to manifest them, we all have dreams about what we want for our lives.   They come in all shapes and sizes, speaking to every aspect of our experience: work, relationships, family, leisure, and our desire to give back to the world.  

But the most important ones are about who we want to be.  These dreams define how you show up for your days, your depth of presence with those you love, and your ability to sit silently by yourself, knowing you are enough, just as you are.  The questions of how to accomplish these dreams are what keep me searching and writing each week.

I want to find fulfilling work and have a second chance at a career, certainly. Mostly, though, I want to be a person who:

  • shows kindness towards myself and others.
  • looks for the good in any situation.  
  • is always learning, always striving to give my best effort.  
  • can let loose, have adventures, and enjoy the gift of each moment.  
  • is willing to be vulnerable in order to form deep connections.

 

You Don’t Have to Know the Destination.

Sunshine over a forest path #WhatComesNext

 To pursue your dream, all you need is a general idea of the direction you’d like to be heading.  Or the sense that where you’re at now isn’t quite right, and it’s time to move on.  

When I started this blog, I only knew I wanted something more for my life.  I’ve spent nearly two decades raising a pair of remarkable young women, and that calling isn’t finished.  Yet I felt it was time to set the example for my daughters that their dreams mattered…by choosing to fulfill one of my own.  

I want to find meaningful work, to use my creative talents to connect with other people, and to explore what my future might hold.  Starting this blog was my first SMALL STEP of discovery and an opportunity to share what I learned with others. 

Whatever your dreams are for becoming your best self, it’s okay to have merely a fleeting sense of what you want.  Like driving at night… you only need to see a short distance ahead.  

 

You Do Need to Move From Dreams to Action.

Change is only possible when we commit to making different decisions.  Though some people find success with radical shifts, I believe the best way to obtain sustainable progress is to start with small, incremental steps and a solid motivation behind your choices.  

Over the last several years, I’ve found my deeper whys.  Though I wasn’t sure about what I should do, I did have clarity about wanting to create, to connect, and to benefit the people and places around me.  That’s because I’m a person who believes in happy endings, in personal growth, and in my capacity to share a sense of wonder and passion for life in ways that are both impactful and actionable.  

My blog has been the canvas to document my progress, as well as the places where I’m still learning—trying to figure out how all the pieces come together.  Life is constantly changing, which means an ever-evolving set of challenges to lead us forward.  

One of the best ways to move from your dreams to your desired reality is to keep asking questions.  Stay curious about your life, and remain open to the possibilities.  This small action is incredibly simple, but not always easy when our future looms uncertain before us.  So how do we start? 

 

Instead of settling for the status quo, ask what could be better.  

Instead of giving up on a far-off dream, ask what small step could inch you closer.

Instead of struggling with this on your own, reach out and share the journey.   

 

We’re all holding dreams close to our hearts, but like all living things, they grow best with plenty of space and sunlight.  

 

Knowing WHEN to act.

Are we ready to make a choice?  How much should we know beforehand?  What are the likely outcomes?

One of the most challenging decisions is knowing when to act.   We all feel impulses for change—either to walk away from a situation or move towards one.  This is where we tend to freeze.  To second guess ourselves.  To want a promise that things will turn out alright.

 

It’s just… life doesn’t work that way.

 

Sometimes you have to leap into the unknown without a guarantee there’s a safety net waiting.  However, the remarkable part of life is realizing that it simply doesn’t matter.  

 

Because you have wings… and you were meant to fly.

 

Taking My Next Step

woman sitting on swing near beach #WhatComesNextRecently, I have been working with a talented coach to find my next steps.  Even before then, however, I had sensed a deep inner awareness that it was time to take a step back from this weekly blog, to give myself the space to discover what comes next.  

So I’ve decided to take the summer off to devote more energy to my coaching work.  I want to connect with my passions and explore how to use my talents to make a difference in this world.  

I hope you’ve found something of value within these posts.  If I’ve touched your life or given you something to think about, then I’m grateful beyond belief.  

I recognize that life is brimming with possibilities.  But part of being able to catch one is having your arms open and ready.  

 

Your Next Step.

woman descending the stairs #WhatComesNext

As I said before, I’m a strong believer in SMALL STEPS.  They’re how I worked my way through medical school, navigated the world of a child with special needs, set myself up for each success, and learned from every failure.  

So this last week, I invite you to take one more SMALL STEP—the most important one of all perhaps.  

 

Ask yourself this question:

What’s next?

 

Maybe it’s something big:

  • A new job or a career change.
  • Starting a family or leaving a relationship.
  • Taking a chance that both scares and thrills you. 

 

It could also be something small:

  • A decision to explore a nearby place you’ve never been.
  • Picking up something you want to read rather than something you think you ought to.
  • Smiling at the person you see all the time but have never said hello to.  

 

Either way: Ask.  The.  Question.  

The answer will come to you, whether with an immediate sense of recognition or a slow, dawning realization.  

I’m sure it will feel terrifying.  Trying to imagine my future years down the road when my girls are on their own seems impossible.  So I surrendered the idea of looking that far ahead.  I’ve made peace with not knowing where I’m headed.  And I’m willing to keep asking the questions, despite my fears.  

Can you embrace the vulnerability of living with uncertainty, for now?

 

Take Your Step!

Commit to taking action on your next step.  Do something, no matter how small, that moves you closer to realizing a dream.  

At the very least, you’ll find a new opportunity, a fresh perspective to delight in.  If you succeed, you will be one step closer to where you want to be.  If you fail, you’ll still gain the wisdom of experience to guide you going forward.  In either case, it could change the course of your life.  

Sometimes when life calls us forth, it’s not about the outcome, but rather our willingness to take a chance.  

 

Living With The Questions.

clear ball near the ocean at sunset #WhatComesNext

My decision to step back from the blog is very similar to the one which prompted its creation—the desire to understand myself better and to become my most Authentic Self.  

Perhaps after the summer, I may chime in from time to time, sharing thoughts from my continuing journey with these deeper inquiries.  Or I could be moving on to the next right thing, exploring a new path with all of its possibilities.  

 

What’s important to realize is that we don’t have to know exactly where we’re going.  Our focus need only be on the one small step before us.  

What comes after that doesn’t matter—until you get there.  

You just have to be brave enough to take a chance… to move forward despite your fears.  

To be willing to live with the questions.

For therein, lies wisdom and joy.  

 

Do What Makes Your Soul Happy #WhatComesNext

 

Peace and love to you all,   Christine

4 COMMENTS

  1. Ginny | 27th May 19

    Hi Christine,
    another meaningful, and touching blog. And so relevant for me. Stepping out of our MM group has been so frightening actually. I miss each of you and so much that we’ve shared. I am trusting there is something about the decision I am not seeing yet. And feeling lots of feelings, loss among them. I would like to hear more about your coaching experience and about anything that is happening in your life—when and if you are inclined to share. All is well. Much love, Ginny

    • Christine | 27th May 19

      Living with the questions isn’t always easy, but listening to your inner voice is the surest way to find your direction. Wishing you all the best, with love, Christine.

  2. Tom Abbott | 29th May 19

    Good luck with your next step. I know we’ll still be in contact elsewhere. 🙂

    • Christine | 29th May 19

      Thank you, Tom. I’m glad we’re still in contact so I won’t miss your fabulous quotes!

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