When I first started Write Change Grow my professional goal was to become a successful full-time freelance writer writing for magazines, newspapers and online.
I wanted to become a freelance writer.
In the beginning, I spent a lot of time brainstorming articles, pitching, researching and of course, writing.
It took a lot of going without, sacrifices, and struggle to get myself in a position to leave my full-time administration job so that I would focus on freelancing and blogging full time.
Imagine my surprise when after all the effort I put in, I discovered that being a freelance writer isn’t what I wanted.
I came to this decision when I realized that I strongly disliked a key element of the role.
It was at this point, that I realized freelance writing (at least in the format that I was pursuing it) wasn’t for me.
It came as quite a shock.
It can be challenging to work hard for something only to discover that you are on the wrong path and need to find another one.
If this happens to you, here are my tips for working through it.
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Your first thought might be to panic particularly if you have invested a lot of time, money, and energy (or most likely all three) into trying to achieve a particular goal.
If you are feeling a bit panicked, it might be time to focus on some self-care so that you can face the next chapter in a more relaxed and calm state of mind.
If you feel you need to take some time out to work out what comes next then give yourself that time.
It’s all part of the process to get where you are meant to be.
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Don’t assume you wasted your time
In our time-poor society, we are quick to stress about how we utilize our time.
You might start thinking you wasted a big chunk of your time working towards the wrong goal. No matter how much you change direction, your earlier work won’t be a total waste.
You will have learned so much and most likely grown as a person, which will ultimately all add to your skill set, experience, and development.
Related post – How to Deal with Periods of Transition
Don’t drive yourself crazy with what if’s
What if’s might be fun when you are brainstorming in a positive way but they can be quite soul-destroying when used in a negative manner.
It’s the old coulda woulda shoulda. If you start going down this path you probably aren’t doing yourself any favors. It won’t help you to dwell on what might have been.
Your focus needs to be firmly on what to do next.
Related post – How often Do you Shoulda, Woulda, Coulda?
Don’t assume it’s too late
Some younger people might be reading this and thinking – so what’s the big deal, it’s common to change university degrees or change careers? The fact is many of us will change careers several times throughout our lives.
Changing careers can get slightly more daunting when we have a mortgage, kids, elderly parents to take care of, young babies, or a host of other personal and financial commitments.
Is it possible to start something else? Absolutely, it’s never too late. Can it be daunting and scary? Hell, yes.
Related post – What’s Age Got to Do With Following Your Dreams?
Let go of the old dream
Sometimes it can be hard letting go of a dream.
I can only imagine the pain of an athlete who has their whole career ahead of them and then suffers a terrible injury that puts them out of the sport. They then have to come up with a new career plan.
Not easy stuff.
Hopefully, most of us are not faced with such heartbreaking career decisions.
Sometimes we need the strength and courage to let something go, so we can move on to the next opportunity.
Related post – Letting Go of What Happened (When you are still Dealing with the Consequences)
Have a detailed plan for moving in a new direction
This is the big one.
It’s perfectly fine to change your mind about what you want to do with your life and how you want to earn a living.
But you need something important.
You need a new goal to work towards. You need to work out what you want and what you need to do to get there.
Giving up my freelancing dream made me realize what I love doing.
Helping and inspiring people is what I am truly passionate about.
I enjoy motivating people to take the next step and inspiring them to look deeper at an issue or to view it from a different angle.
I love helping people feel good about themselves.
Once you realize you need to choose a different path, get your new plan together and get cracking!
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