We delight in the beauty of the butterfly,
but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.
- Maya Angelou -
As long as I can remember, people - starting with my brothers - have always told me or asked me if I was chasing butterflies (in my mind). Which is their way of saying I'm easily distracted or that I wasn't paying attention. I'd laugh these comments off because they were usually right.
I've always had a great life but one-day came when I felt terribly lost. I was running fast, I was in the rat race; I was giving my all along with a million other people but where to?? Something in my gut was warning me to turn back. It wasn't too late. "Turn back before you lose your true self."
Over the span of 18 months I knew of or heard of several people that died. These deaths stopped the races, they woke me up, especially since I had never been close to death - yes, I'd been lucky. I realized how fragile life was and sadly that I'd worked myself into one that wasn't really doing it for me. On the outside I seemed fine, a successful career and a great life. But those closest to me knew I was off track. So, I started planning. It took me 3 years but I planned and reinforced my savings and dug deep in my soul for the courage to make a significant change that I knew I had to make. It was one of the scariest times in my life.
Then the moment came, I resigned my job to take a year off - to find myself - yes, cliche but I really felt I was so lost that I needed a designated period to just "be". I started with a visit to a very dear friend of mine in Kent, England. Talk about an amazing place to find yourself! I slept for days then a fog lifted and I started reading, something I love to do but hadn't done in years. The last reading I had done was for my MBA and that wasn't the kind that fed my soul. Then I started my jogs and long walks into the countryside and into the woods. My life had flipped from being home and feeling so lost to being lost yet feeling so at home. Eventually I made my way to Ireland and France and one of my favorite places, Malibu. Along the way reconnecting and appreciating the journey that I was on. When I came home I felt strong again, my confidence was back and I started my own company. It's been two years since my last corporate job and I am such a different person, I turned back in time to become myself again. I'm thankful for the unconditional support I got from my friends and family. It was an amazing way to start this new chapter.
Now I'm not just chasing butterflies but I am one!