By GGTW Co-founder Tricia Yacovone-Biagi
“Everyone has their own way of doing things,” my husband said, pointing to and referencing my hair. We were discussing Go Get The World’s mission and goals for 2019, and I understood his point immediately.
I didn’t always have blue hair. In fact, only a small part of my hair is and has ever been blue, and I’ve only had it for about a year. That’s because I used to be too afraid to do something that obviously outside of the box…which seems kind of ridiculous from my current vantage point beneath blue bangs. I mean, I’ve travelled alone and all over the world with little thought about how unusual that was. Yet doing something bold with my appearance had always been entirely out of the question.
It took going through a series of major life events to get me to realize that some things in life are truly important, and others (like hair color) certainly are not. If I was going to have the life I wanted–whatever that looked like–I had to make it happen myself. So, when I found myself being envious of people who could confidently color their hair blue or purple or pink or green, then I would simply have to try it, and stop ruminating about it. And seriously, what would be the down side anyway? I’m not a model; I don’t make living selling hair products; and I don’t work for the government anymore.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think it’s wise to approach ALL of life’s decisions that way. But for something that is as easy to change as a hairstyle, why bother spending hours and hours worrying about it? There truly are other things in life that are vastly more important! I’m not about to fuss over stuff that doesn’t matter in the long run. This gives me time to fuss over the important things within my control.
Notice I qualified my statement with “within my control.” That’s another lesson I had to learn (the hard way, sometimes). It took some time, but eventually I figured out how to distinguish what was really within and what was beyond my control. I still mess it up sometimes, but my confidantes help me stay grounded enough to regain clarity. And maintaining a good grasp on what is within one’s control is critical for making wise decisions about how to Go Get The World, because what might not be possible for you today, could be possible in the future.
I thought about how other women in my network dealt with difficult decisions when they faced a crossroads on their journeys. What made some women pursue every dream, and others languish in indecision or suffer analysis paralysis? The ones who made the changes and went after what they wanted were all guided by being true to who they were and what they deemed important in life. Each one had a different story for how they realized what they wanted, but each one stayed focused on and gained strength from knowing what they wanted in life. Here are some of their stories.
Momtime = Hometime. A young woman I know had recently given birth to her first child. When she returned to work after parental leave, she realized that she no longer wanted to travel for her job, even though she and her partner had figured out ahead of time how to make her travel schedule work with the demands of being new parents. Her goal, she realized, was to enjoy as much of her child’s life as possible, and traveling that much would prohibit her from achieving that. So, she talked with her boss about finding another role with limited or no travel. When that didn’t work out, she found a job elsewhere that required no travel (and even had a higher salary).
Creativity = Happiness. Another woman realized that she had become increasingly frustrated and dispirited not only at work, but during her limited time off, too. She had practically doubled her hours at work after finally receiving a promotion she had been working towards for years. That left little time outside of work to pursue the creative endeavors which provided a sense of fulfillment and happiness in her life. When she figured out that she needed enough spare time to freely engage the creative aspects of her soul to feel happy, she cut back her hours to a normal week. She realized that doing so would probably limit her future career prospects at that employer, but she was willing (and happy) to make that exchange for her sanity and happiness.
You = No one else. This story comes from Go-getter Jessi Behrendsen, who received her undergraduate degree in creative writing. At school, all of her peers were submitting short stories and poems to literary journals and there was a lot of pressure to get “published,” particularly before graduation. To put it simply, spending the time submitting to those journals was just never Jessi’s thing, so she chose to focus solely on writing for the sake of herself and to not pursue publishing until she was 100 percent happy with her work. While her classmates talked about what journals they had submitted to and what pieces were getting picked up, Jessi often had the sense of not doing enough and feeling that she wasn’t taken seriously as a writer. She didn’t let that deter her though. She found her happiness in pursuing a writing career in business, journalism and marketing, saving her fiction for when she truly feels like it’s ready for the world to see! Her advice? Always do what feels right to you. If you don’t feel the pull or passion to do something a specific way, you’re feeling that way for a reason!
Now = What you have. My last story is about a woman who lost her brother to an accident when he was only 35. The realization that a life could end so abruptly at any time shook her to her core. Suddenly life seemed finite, and she understood that today is all any of us has. She looked at all of her “would have, could have, should have” plans again with a different lens, and started asking herself, “Why not? And why not now?” instead of wondering about whether she should do things at all. She remembered that she’d always dreamed of learning to play the piano, so she rented one, signed up for lessons and learned to play! Her attitude about change–whether it was learning a new skill or leaving a frustrating job–and waiting for the “right moment” had shifted for her entire life because of her brother’s premature death.
So remember, whatever it is you are contemplating or wondering about, or trying to decide what to do next, you can make the change once you clearly know what you want. Every woman, of every stripe, ambition, and background has the capacity to Go Get The World. Dare to chase your dream! And if you need some encouragement, drop us a line and we’ll help you get on track again. We’re here for you.