It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to…that was my anthem for my 25th birthday.
When I turned 25 I had a bit of a meltdown – I called it a quarter life crisis. I cried at my party, into my glass of red, and continued to for the week that followed.
I had so many things that I had planned to achieve before turning 30 and the idea that I was just five years off 30 and still had so many boxes to tick freaked me out.
My life was good, I had a stable job, a wonderful partner, incredible friends and a busy social life, but my life plan had me married, with a baby, and a successful career, living in a house that I owned with dogs, cats and an alpaca for good measure all before 30 and that all seemed like it was way off.
I’ve always been goal driven and in fairness I have successfully achieved much of what I have put my mind to. Having deadlines in place has kept me on track with my professional goals. The problem was I had so many ridiculous timeframes in place for all of these important moments in my life, many of which I don’t have complete control over *shock horror* and I was feeling the pressure because I hadn’t achieved a number of them. After a week of feeling flat, daunted, and disillusioned I snapped myself out of it and thought – Holly, you are 25, get a grip.
The closer I got to 30, the more relaxed I seemed to become about the boxes that were yet to be ticked off. I was determined to travel to Europe before settling down and having kids, so last year I finally did it. It was an amazing trip that I got to enjoy in far more style than if I’d done it five years earlier. I got engaged whilst in Santorini and thought, I am actually ready for the next stage of my life now, not because I set myself a goal but because I feel really good about my life and where it is heading.
Since my holiday I’ve been just as committed to my goals as ever, I’ve continued to work my way through them and an am happy to give myself a big pat on the back when I knock them out of the park by my soft deadline. But that’s the key that my goals strategist Mardy Penrose drills into me – create a soft deadline to give you something to work towards. I’ve taken the pressure off myself regarding the big life moments that I am yet to experience and instead I am celebrating the things I have achieved and am excited about the things that are yet to come off.
This year Tay Tay’s shake it off is my anthem 🙂 I am 30 this week and I feel fabulous.
We all feel pressure in certain areas of our lives, it’s different for everyone, but take a look at where that pressure is coming from. Is it coming from within you or are you letting external pressures get to you? If you’re a high achiever and used to getting what you want then have a look at your goals – are they realistic; are you being fair on yourself? If you’re allowing other people’s expectations overwhelm you then stop it! You may not have control over everything (I’m still trying to get my head around that) but you do have absolutely control over how you react and feel. If your mother in law is applying the pressure because she wants grandkids, don’t get upset about it, appreciate the fact that she thinks you’re good enough to bare her grandkids. If you’re parents think you should be in a better job…..turn around and say well hey, thanks for believing in me but I’ll get there when the time’s right for me.
It’s great to chase your goals fearlessly and in order to achieve them you need to make yourself accountable but when the walls feel like they are closing in and you feel like time is running out, just take a step back. Fear is taking over and you when you are coming from a place of fear then unfortunately you will not move forward and the universe will probably deliver just what you are putting out there. Take a look at your life, write down five things that you are grateful for in your life today. Re-assess your goals and place a soft deadline on them (thanks Mardy), and go for it!
And in the words of Monty Python
If life seems jolly rotten
There’s something you’ve forgotten
And that’s to laugh and smile and dance and sing
Always look on the bright side of life !