How To Know When It's Time For A Life Change.

By Alysha Bèrubè Cook

  Happy Wednesday readers! Chances are if you're reading this it's because it pertains to you, so lets get down to the grits as to why that is. 

  I'm in the middle of moving away from my small town and I've been putting a lot of thought into what the signs are when you know you're ready for a life change. Uneasiness is what happens when we are on the precipice of transformation or development - change. Unfortunately, discomfort can often be confused for unhappiness. Of course change is going to make you feel off, but without change there would be no perceptive. It usually takes a bit of discomfort to break through to a new understanding, to motivate ourselves to create real change.

1.  Maybe you're starting to feel like you're just aimlessly wandering around for no good reason. You might be feeling “lost,” or directionless. Feeling lost is actually a sign you’re becoming more present in your life – you’re living less within the plot and daydreams that you premeditated, you're starting to see things in the moment and it scares you. Until you’re used to this, it will feel messy and scary. (It'll be okay.) These are healthy things to feel and this is what tends to happen when you're ready for change - your new chapter, you're looking for something more now. Sometimes your worst enemy can be your thoughts. It's good to start to realize that your thoughts change your life experience, and it’s often not until we’re pushed to our wit’s end that we even try to take control of them – and that’s when we realize that we were in control all along. 

“Life is one fucking beauty contest after another. You know, school, then college, then work, fuck that. You do what you love, and fuck the rest.” Little Miss Sunshine (2006)

 2.  The feeling of having no direction. When we are feeling anxious for change to start we tend to start to lose control of our emotions. This is when we get random invasions of irrational exasperation or bleakness that intensify until we can’t ignore them anymore. When you feel an emotion the best thing you can do is to recognize it, feel it, and try to understand where it's coming from. People tend to try to keep feelings pent up - myself included. It is our responsibility to learn to stop grappling with them or resisting them, and to simply become fully conscious of them (after that, we control them, not the opposite way around). The opposite to that, is that we can start to feel overly excited which is great but when you feel this way it can also drain you. You may start to experience fluxes in your attitude which is normal as well due to the mix of wonder and confusion. If you look up the definition of the word "business", in old English you'll find the anxiety to help define it. The reason we feel so stressed out when we're thinking of the future is for that exact reason, it is the state of always being consumed in something. It's interesting how it's become the word we use in regard to all of our daily work and commerce. We work in business, or we have businesses. No wonder we so deeply confuse "busy-ness" for success. 

3.  When you start experiencing unpredictable and scattered sleeping patterns. When you start to sleep through the day you should be listening to your body, why is it resting that much? Could it be because your mind is racing so much it needs that much more rest? Or are you getting less sleep than before due to interruptions in the middle of the night because you can’t stop  stressing out? Are you constantly thinking about something? Do you find yourself full of energy or completely exhausted, and with little in-between?  These are all things you tend to deal with when you're on the verge of creating something new for yourself. Another thing that can be altered in your sleeping process is your dreaming. A lot of people tend to experience vivid dreaming. Many psychologists and researchers have recognized the problem solving capability and creative insight that dreams provide. Dreams are how your subconscious mind communicates with you. I have noticed that when all the lights are on, people tend to talk about what they are doing – their outer lives. Sitting round in candlelight or firelight, people start to talk about how they are feeling – their inner lives. They speak subjectively, they argue less, there are longer pauses. To sit alone without any electric light is curiously creative. I have my best ideas at dawn or at nightfall, but not if I switch on the lights – then I start thinking about projects, deadlines, demands, and the shadows and shapes of the house become objects, not suggestions, things that need to done, not a background to thought.

      "So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they’re busy doing things they think are important. This is because they’re chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning."
- Mitch Albom

4. The feeling of being unsure of who you really are. Your past illusions about who you ‘should’ be are dissolving. You feel unsure because it is uncertain, and for most of your life it'll feel this way because we are constantly in the process of evolving. We can start to feel like all of our plans are going in the trash around this point but what you do not realize at this moment is that it is making way for a reality better than you could have thought of, one that’s more in tune with you are now, not who you thought you would be. We don’t become uncertain when we change for the worse (we become angry and closed off). If you're starting to feel like you're most comfortable while alone this could mean you’re re-calibrating. In other words: if what you’re experiencing is insecurity or uncertainty, it’s usually going to lead to something better. 

5. You may be feeling brain fog. What is brain fog you ask? It’s a commonly used phrase that sums up feelings of confusion, forgetfulness, and lack of focus and mental clarityBasically you feel like you just can’t think, which can be very frustrating and even downright frightening. Everyone feels a little fuzzy-headed once in a while, but if you suffer from a foggy brain frequently, you certainly would like to get your mental clarity back. This is caused in the left side of your brain, and the weird sleep patterns do not give it any help. You’re utilizing the right hemisphere more often (you’re becoming more intuitive, you’re dealing with emotions, you’re creating) sometimes it can seem as though “left brain” functions leave you feeling fuzzy. Things like focusing, organizing, remembering small details suddenly become difficult.

6. Pushing people out of your life. When you are ready for the next chapter in your life you tend to start downsizing your circle. You start to become more of yourself which means a lot of the people you grew up with won't fit your friend category. When growing up we tend to make friends because we're stuck with them for 40 hours a week but we don't really truly have all that much in common. Now, this can take you years to realize, or it can even be after you change yourself along the road. Just because you thought one way doesn't mean you'll always think that way and being friends with people who don'y have the same values or beliefs as you can be negative, stressful, and quite frankly, a waste of time. When you start removing people from your life that might be a sign that you are ready for new interests and sometimes that means dropping people who hold you back. Having a desire to speak up for yourself or just walking away from people who do more bad than good in your life is proof that you are starting to respect yourself more, which is a trait of maturity. 

7. Having old struggles resurface is a way your mind is trying tell you something. It's trying to make you overcome old battles you have within yourself so you can try to change them. You can become conscious of where these feelings sprout from and find the root of the problem. You will always have battles within you but the best thing you can do for yourself is start from the bottom and work yourself up rather than constantly barring them. You will never get over things if you don't hit them head on, no one can truly help you if you don't want to help yourself. Sometimes you need to take the blame for what caused something troubling you and sometimes it may hurt but that hurt will subside. One of the harshest and most amazing things I've read lately was, "If you want to blame someone look in the mirror." A lot of the time we tend to put the blame on someone else because it feels better, but you're only really hurting yourself in the long run by doing that. Even if the other person was to blame holding onto unnecessary anger won't give you a happy life, you need to forgive to forget. 

Look around you. Appreciate what you have. Nothing will be the same in a year. 

You need to realize you are the only person responsible for your life, and your happiness. This kind of emotional autonomy is terrifying, because it means that if you mess up, it’s all on you. At the same time, realizing it is the only way to be truly free. The risk is worth the reward on this one, always. When the universe wants you to grow it'll make you uncomfortable. 


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