I’ve been trying to understand why it felt so good to enter an industry that gave me all the IDFKs.
Isn’t not knowing stuff scary?
Isn’t an entry level job at the age of 35 a huge middle finger to my college degree?
Isn’t it COMPLETELY INSANE to voluntarily take a position that paid me $50k less a year?
Why was it the best year of my life?
Here’s the thing. Expertise is weighty. While it’s exciting to know your shit, having people look to you for the next move is also depleting. ((Every leader reading this wants someone to take them by the hand and provide excellent snacks along the way.)) And though it’s tempting to nuzzle deeper into the soft pillowy comfort we’ve built in our lives and careers, it’s heart-popping to shed it all and start again.
This is why so many attorneys say FUCK IT and move to Costa Rica to sell bon-bons on the beach.
I felt pressure as a funeral director apprentice to become physically stronger. To memorize all the burial requirements at different cemeteries. To quickly learn how to peel a dead body out of a recliner BECAUSE OPE, 17 PEOPLE ARE WATCHING. But it was entirely different than needing to say the smartest thing in the room and prove my worth over and over again to a carousel of clients.
Instead of knowing my shit, I just had to give a shit. And it felt so good to dig my heels back into that fundamental soil.
Starting Over Was Head-Explodingly Good
-I was an instant born-again student. Instead of cramming in professional development after a long work day, my job WAS my development. I literally sped to work every day, so excited to be there and sponge up the next death lesson.
-The physicality was perfection. Are those…biceps? Did I just lift a 140 lb St. Bernard out of the freezer?! Did my FitBit not shame me for once and instead congratulate me?!?! Death > Planet Fitness
–My brain was mine again. Instead of pounding out creative work on demand, I could reserve my mind juice for personal passion projects. Like this blog.
-Entering a hidden world is magic. Look at all the things I wouldn’t have learned or experienced had I not Mike Rowe-d myself into a different reality. How many invisible universes are we walking past every day that could very well be the secret sauce our soul is hungering for?
Recently I read an article that glorified occasionally coasting in your career vs climbing, to create a TO-BE list rather than a TO-DO list. I’m inviting you to go even further than that and to leap backwards entirely.
Leaping is hard. Leaping is expensive. Leaping requires a very good support system. But bitch, you have legs and an amygdala for a reason.
*Puts soap box away
*Pours you a glass of Aldi wine
*Hopes you’ll be brave in your squishy-skinsuit that can do so many hard things