I recently listened to Elizabeth Gilbert and Rob Bell interview each other at a live New Year’s event that they posted to Rob Bell’s podcast, The RobCast. In the middle of the interview Liz (I’ve seen her live twice, so clearly we’re on a casual first name basis 🙂) brought up what happens when your soul is appalled. And when you’re in this situation, she said, you don’t have to know exactly the path you’re supposed to be on. You only have to know enough to say, “NOT THIS”.
NOT THIS to the job that is sucking your soul dry.
NOT THIS to the schedule that is leaving you exhausted.
NOT THIS to the “friend” that takes way more than she ever gives.
NOT THIS to holding yourself to such high standards that it’s only a matter of time before you break.
NOT THIS to nodding your head silently and putting on a happy face while you’re screaming on the inside.
Before I started my business I worked for many years in HR and leadership development for large companies. In late 2016 I found out we were going to restructure our team and shuffle around responsibilities. I let my wishes be known that I loved my work in women’s leadership development and was interested in doing more work in talent management.
On the morning of February 10, 2017 – my birthday – I found out that 75% of my job was going to be performance management. Something I never had any interest in. There was an immediate lurch in my stomach. I almost started to cry in my boss’s office, but I held back tears and said it would be fine. But I knew it wasn’t fine. My entire being was screaming NOT THIS.
My soul was appalled. There was nothing “wrong” with the job, but it just wasn’t right for me. I didn’t know the next step in my career but I knew it was NOT THIS. I immediately starting exploring and considering different possibilities. Get a different corporate job? Talk to my boss to let her know I couldn’t stay in this job very long? Or take the big leap and start my own business?
Over the next 5 months of exploring I landed on becoming an entrepreneur. It was exciting and terrifying and completely overwhelming, but my soul knew it was the right decision. Instead of NOT THIS, my soul gently kept saying, THIS, THIS, THIS (click here to get an exercise that can help you get back in touch with what your soul and inner voice are saying to you).
I had no idea where my path would lead that day in my boss’s office when I found out my job was going to change. I only knew that my soul was appalled and screaming NOT THIS.
Is your soul roaring NOT THIS to any part of your life? Comment of send me a message to let me know what’s happening for you.
Heather Whelpley is a coach and speaker that works with high achieving women that want to stop overwhelm and get back their joy while still having a successful career. Click here to learn more about coaching.