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Timing Is Everything; How To Be Productive In Seasons Of Waiting.
If you’re in a season of waiting, feeling stuck, lacking motivation I have some encouragement for you right now. Helpless is just about one of the worst feelings there is, I’m convinced. Above just thinking about what life could look like, let’s talk about what it looks like right now. I know how distressing it is to feel stuck. Any time things aren’t in motion towards your goals it can feel like everything is in limbo. But sometimes as much as we want to move forward we are standing still. Although I believe there is a great deal of work someone can do to always better their situation, sometimes things develop slowly which can feel overwhelming for someone who’s ready to run.
But the good news is you can learn how to be productive in a season of waiting when life is moving at a glacial pace. If you feel stuck, you don’t have to stay stuck, even when the circumstances don’t push things forward. You’re ability to thrive doesn’t have to depend solely on the situation. Believe it or not the times that make you feel like they are only meant to make you suffer are actually FOR YOU. I know. And if you shift your mindset to being the best with what you have, you’ll be a mile ahead when you’re given more.
And I could’ve been another minute late
And you never would’ve crossed my path that day
And when it seems true love is hard to find
That’s when love comes along
Just in time
~Timing is Everything By Garrett Hedlund
Coincidently if this song wasn’t in the movie Country Strong, I honestly don’t think I would’ve liked it seeings how country music seems to directly impact my gag reflex. But while writing this post, I stopped for a few quiet moments just to listen. Sometimes the story behind the words allows you to fall in love with the song despite judging the genre. And we’re all storytellers apart of a grand story. Honestly, my experience with timing is often less Meghan and Harry and more, “the timing chain on your car just broke and it’s going to cost $2,000.” Yep. Timing is everything.
But despite the hard moments, I’m so grateful.
Gratitude Will Push You Forward
Corrie Ten Boom in The Hiding Place was the first person to teach me about being thankful in the presence of God for circumstances we naturally wish to hate: The pull-out-your-hair-why-me moments. And she taught me to trust until the end… even still. You see, everything is always less about what’s actually going on and more how you see it. The more you work on only the things you can control and less on wishing the circumstances will change, the more thankful you will feel just to be alive, which in itself is literally a miracle. We’ll only realize how connected our stories are leading us to who we were meant to be if we can learn to appreciate them.
Understanding The Interconnectedness Of All Things
I want to let you in on a little secret. This embarrassing story about me below actually began as one of those stories told at Christmas after your family has asked, “are you still single?!” at least three times, and regardless of its humiliation it turned into beautiful piece of my story instead. Now I understand. To illustrate my point, a quick personal story on that time I said that in my job interview
After graduating with double bachelors, I started the job search for a (big girl) job. Although I have since been appropriately disillusioned at the actual transition from university to real life adulthood, I still was naïve and overly confident during the job hunt, which was really helpful by the way. Not.
I landed an interview for a social media position in my area. I mean I had a Facebook and Twitter so how hard could it be right? (Problem #1)
Spoiler alert—I didn’t get the job.
Dressing warmly was safe since it was December in Colorado (Problem #2). Despite arriving fifteen minutes early to go over my notes, I didn’t feel any less nervous. Turns out that these were the type of people who don’t seem to understand how to regulate a comfortable temperature for other humans.
In cold climates, you don’t blast the heat inside making it uncomfortably hot because it’s neither comfortable inside nor outside. You turn it to keep the area warm, not hot. Just like in the summer, you do not blast the air conditioning so it’s freezing inside but too hot to be outside. WHY DOES NO ONE UNDERSTAND THIS! *deep breath*
After pretending small talk up front was too much fun, I was finally called back. Sitting down, I suddenly realized the interview was going to be with three men, certainly not an issue unless you are sweating from heat stroke and still finding your confidence as a young woman.
So, they start asking me questions that I don’t know the answer to. (Problem #3) Since one of my talents is disguising my nerves, I found a fake confidence in the moment to answer the questions as best as I could, inserting my opinion when asked, and creating playful banter (If you don’t know, focus on what you do know!) They put the heater right next to me in a seemingly chivalrous gesture.
Internally realizing I was in no way qualified and this was going nowhere, I decided to continue to smile, be engaging, and mirror their easy-going personalities. However, I increasingly became more nervous—a recipe for disaster with my big mouth.
What happened next, I would think about for years to come. I’m not sure if it’s the general nerves from insecurity and intimidation or the fact that my brain was misfiring due to burnt wires. SYS-TEM MAL–FUNC-TION. Within the next three answers, I responded using the royal “we.”
Yes, I know. This confused all of us equally, even the multiple personalities I just met. The gangs all here!
My theory, since obviously I was not actually present, was that I truly meant “we” as in my mom and me, since she was the person I was around the most at the time. Knowing that it might be negatively perceived trying to get a big girl job but referring to the fact that I was living with my mom could have stirred me (we still don’t know) to further go down a rabbit hole by digging “oh, well I just mean… Um, ya know the person that I am and the person that I wish I was. Because… you know, sometimes I’m one way but I like, wish I was another.”
This is my Billy Madison moment at the end except I wasn’t confident to believe anybody was clapping. “No way in your rambling incoherent response was that even close to a rational thought. I award you no points and may God have mercy on your soul.” 🙋
After surviving more comedy bits I decided to try out in the interview, I left a thank you note and shook everyone’s hand. I walked out with my head high and got into my car trying to properly astral project back into my own body.
I am such a treat.
I was truly grateful they all laughed at all of my jokes and continued writing down notes. And although I was disappointed when they let me down easy, I at least felt a little bit better when they said they had a lot of fun in the interview with me. The ironic thing is, I am now qualified for that job I missed out on, but everything happens for a reason.
Why It Matters
Typically I do pretty well, so I didn’t understand how that could take a wrong turn to hell so completely. But, I realized shortly after that why. I interviewed for another job after the failed interview and couldn’t in good conscience take it even though it went well. A weekend family visit hours after this interview proved why things just didn’t feel right.
Grandmother was worse than I’d been exposed to. Suddenly all those years she swore was her last so we’d get our butts to thanksgiving dinner were catching up. The Progressive in Progressive Lung Disease is faster than you’ll know and taking the time caring for a loved one’s every need is more taxing than I could have ever imagined. But I built memories. I’m happy she left in the presence of those who loved her and got to leave on her own terms because the timing had been right for me to give.
We stayed with her until her very last moment. Not the royal we this time, but my mother and I. And we even got to be around other family too.
Beyond her passing other opportunities came popping up over the next few years that finally led me here now; happier than I’ve ever been with a completely different outlook. Despite me trying to start my career where I was, it just wasn’t the right time. And for good reason. It required me to be thoughtful not to make a rash decision and take a leap of faith instead to go with my gut: past what was comfortable and what I knew.
It Takes Work
Through curiosity, hard work, and obedience despite less than ideal circumstances, I went on to learn about marketing, social media, SEO, expand my knowledge on web development, email marketing and so much more. All these skills that weren’t utilized where they manifested, I now use on the daily for my business!
Pushing past my own limitations and fears would be impossible if I hadn’t laid so much groundwork in the process of getting to know myself better: where now, “stuck” indicates a deeper need for personal development and I let my emotions be my ally to open myself up–not blindly, but purposefully.
Time Is Not A Luxury We Have And What To Do About It
Timing is never what we want it to be nor will we ever have enough. We want it to move faster when we feel ready to move on, slower when we’re happy, and reverse the times we wasted. And yet, it’s always moving. I’m thankful to all the frustrating moments and seasons of waiting I’ve had to endure to be prepared for something better than I could have expected.
Beyond trying to become the master over time, I bow and say, “thank you.” It’s not a luxury that we have, so living on purpose is where you find freedom. I want you to think about what life would look like if you weren’t distracted on things that don’t matter, weren’t stuck in a desperate mindset to keep on surviving, and made decisions for yourself for real? What could you give to other people and to yourself if you stepped out of line and created your own? If you lived life on your terms?
What Helps When You’re Stuck
- Fall in love with Personal Development (Always work on growing yourself and focus on what you can control) Find a podcast about your industry, a new skill, or something you are struggling with. This can also be good creative inspiration, which will help your business later on. My favorite podcasts are Often Ambitious, Skinny Confidential, The Science of Social Media, Angie Lee Show, and Self work with Dr Margaret Rutherford.
- Journal for self evaluation and time to breath, think, reflect. I use journaling to untangle my emotions and thoughts. Since intentionality is something I value, I set my intentions for my overall goals and daily habits, prayers for the day, lies I’m likely to tell myself or roadblocks and how I can move past them along with my daily to dos.
- Do as much to prepare as you can. Starting a blog? Do research! Want to make a large purchase? Save! Want to get healthier? What’s one healthier choice you can make right now? Those are easy examples but whatever you are looking forward to start preparing as if you were creating checklists, to dos, getting into the mindset, and slowly wiggle towards your goal!
- Read! The best writers and CEOs are readers too!
But What If I Don’t Know What Path I Should Go Down?
Ultimately, if you don’t know what you are passionate or what you want to do it’s because you don’t know yourself yet. But that’s okay! If you’ve been on the run in life’s assembly line, how would you really have time to do anything other than what’s expected of you? This is why self evaluation is key because it offers a chance to stop moving so fast and just be.
Therefore, you should be taking the time to grow and find out what types of things you actually want, what person you’d like to be, and make intentional decisions moving past doing to being. Getting to know yourself leads directly into trying out new experiences and dedicating your time to personal development (and self reflection/evaluation). You can’t know unless you try.
Still Not Sure? Ask Yourself These Questions:
What Am I Good At?
What Am I Interested In?
Can I Monetize Anything I’m Already Doing?
What Is Sustainable?
Have I Seen Or Heard Of Any Opportunities That Sparked My Interest Lately?
What Are My Strengths/Weaknesses?
If I Wasn’t Too Afraid, What Would I Do? (If I Could Do Anything?)
What Lifestyle Do I Want To Live?
Generally, When I Think About What Kind Of Person I Want To Be I Picture…
What Do The People That I Admire Do?
The more self work you put in, the more these answers will become clear. And beyond just taking a step back to live on purpose, you have to try out new experiences to start cancelling some of these questions out!
The Big Picture
If you look too closely sometimes, you won’t understand what you’re looking at in the grander picture. When you’re the artist, you wouldn’t throw out the whole painting because you only have the left corner finished would you? Absolutely not! Finish the damn thing stroke by stroke! Don’t throw up your hands just yet. You can be happy in those frustrating slow transitional times too, not just the times when creativity is flowing effortlessly.
You’re Meant To Be Here, Now
Everything that I am is culminating into one lane, mission, purpose. Finding freedom. If you have that feeling in your gut that this is where you need to be, I’m happy that you’re here and I want to do this journey together. Subscribe and follow & please don’t hesitate to reach out. I’m right here!