Twelve years ago, I called my parents and said, "I got a call from a company in Chile, they want to hire me and have me move down there. What do you think?" Ten years ago I called my family via skype, as I was living in Chile at the time, and said "I've applied to a yoga teacher certification institute in India and I've been accepted. I leave in November, what do you think?" Six years ago I was talking to them and said "I have an idea for a business, I bought an LLC and am working with a website designer. I'm financially fronting it all myself. What do you think?"
These were all big decisions in my life, uprooting everything, big changes, financial gambles and even safety concerns, and I would continually tell my family my decision and then ask what they thought. I'll never forget when my sister said to me, "I don't understand why you ask, you've clearly already made up your mind. Is it for assurance? You are still going to do what you want to do."
Part of me took it as a dig, because I thought, well that's not true, I value your opinions. And I do, but in the end, she was also right. I wanted to jump into these challenges and opportunities, I wanted to see how far I could make it work and if I could actually do it. But the other part of me was looking to them for asking the questions I hadn't yet asked, because either I didn't know to ask them or because I didn't want to.
I've since moved back to Texas after living in Chile for 2.5 years, I got that yoga certification and taught for nine years, I started that business too and sank a lot of my money into it, only to close it officially in 2022.
I don't make those life changing decisions anymore without consideration for my partner, my family, and my future. I have conversations that aren't bullying my way into what I want, but seeking input and valuing it before going forward. I like getting to make big choices involving other people, because I've made them before on my own. I've done solo adventuring for a really long time, it's nice to invite others along with me now.
I still make the time for me, for what lights me up now. It is important to thoughtfully consider what is needed. I was talking with my editor recently and telling her about my schedule of which I have stuck since the first of the year, waking up one hour earlier and writing three days a week before my morning workout. She admitted she tried to dedicate 15 minutes a day to something she wanted to do, but it lasted 3 weeks. She is a busy working mom and wife, I know solo time is sparing. So she asked me how I commit to it, and just like those big decisions of moving and traveling and buying an LLC, I explained how I needed to choose something for me, just for me. And I said, sometimes I make a thoughtful decisions. In order for me to give myself one hour, three days a week, to my creativity, my space for not asking for opinions, not seeking advise nor questions I don't want to ask, I have to get up earlier.
I thoughtfully decided that at 4am, when the birds are still sleeping, when the house is quiet, the work is put away, that I can decide to give myself this opportunity, this challenge and this space. It is that important, I'm willing to have my alarm set daily at 3:55am.
I'm no longer curious about my strength of which I can achieve it, how successful I can be at it nor if I will fail, it doesn't affect anyone else in my life, because I'm not really in that much demand at this time anyway...but also because this is the my new move, my new adventure, my investment in my time. And that thoughtful decision is a gift to myself, which is giving back to those around me too.
I no longer need to ask "what do you think?", because at 43 years old, I finally know the answer...