My story isn’t that different from anyone else. My need for self-empowerment and growth stemmed from being sick and tired of a hand-me-down life.
What’s a hand-me-down life?
It’s sort of like an old sweater passed down to you from an older relative or sibling—a hand-me-down. This sweater is stretched out of shape and unflattering.
It’s filled with lint balls and loose threads. It wasn’t originally intended for you, but you make do with it anyway. Trying to make it fit, while all along wishing for something new. You wear it by default, instead of by design.
If you’ve fallen into a hand-me-down life that wasn’t designed for you, you’re not alone. Our circumstances sometimes throw us off into directions we’ve never intended to go. We involve ourselves in careers, activities, friendships, and marriages that doesn’t necessarily fit who we are (or worse, doesn’t fit who we’ve become), yet we stay in them by default. Too afraid to change. Not sure how to redesign. But that’s exactly what has to happen—a redesign. Otherwise we’ll stay stuck in that ratty old sweater. The lint balls will suffocate us and the loose threads will entangle us.
For me, my redesign came when I first cracked opened a powerful resource book several years ago called “You’ll See it When You Believe it,” by Dr. Wayne Dyer. This opened up a whole new perspective for me and sent me feasting on all the knowledge I could get my hands on that would empower me to design a life that fits who I am now.
I burned that hand-me-down sweater. Made some changes in my career and in my marriage. Said, “no” to activities that no longer suited me. Got rid of hindering friendships, gained uplifting and supportive ones, and held on to the good friends already rooted. I’ve renewed my commitment to my inner spirit, and recharged my faith.
Phew! It’s exhausting and a constant daily struggle, but the point of the matter is this; I’ve decided to take part in the design of my life instead of letting my life be handed down to me by default.
Yes, some things are out of our control, but all the other things are open for design.
Photo by: Africa
NOTE: I previously wrote this post in 2012. I’m re-posting it because it’s one of my favorites and because it serves as a healthful reminder for me to keep
redesigning my life. I hope it’s a healthful reminder for you, too.