For When You Chose To Let Go (But Now You’re Not So Sure)
You did it. You left the job/relationship/city/thing-you-left. It felt good. Great, even. A weight was lifted. You felt energized. An “anything-is-possible-now”-ness. Free.
Maybe this was last week, month or year. But like a bat out of hell—and for whatever reason—today, you’re feeling not so sure about your choice.
More than once, you’re going to wonder if you made the right decision. You’ll check to see how people from those times are doing. But don’t confuse the automatic anxiety felt from mindlessly thumbing through social media with certainty that you made a mistake.
(But aren't mistakes good?)
Doubt will show up, too. Oh, yes. Odds are you hemmed and hawed before making the seemingly bigger-than-big decision to leave what you knew. If you were me, you did it for a year and change before enough was enough, and you had to do something. Even if it was a mistake. Did you honestly think a little doubt wouldn’t enter into the picture once you pulled the trigger after all that fence-riding? Doubt shows up anytime the stakes are high and we step outside our comfort zones. Anytime we don’t recognize where we are, or know the way. Doubt doesn’t mean doom.
(And who said doubt was bad anyway?)
It’s possible you did make a mistake. But if you don’t think mistakes are bad, you won’t care. If you remind yourself mistakes give us much-needed information for future times, then you’ll experience—even if only for a millisecond—a sense of profound relief.
Sometimes we move on and we never look back. We don’t miss it.
And we anticipate that experience when we move on from something else. We expect 100% certainty. But 100% certainty is rare.
(And doesn’t teach you shit.)
See looking back as a sign your time there wasn’t wasted. See it as meaningful.
Some people will tell you, “You can always change your mind.” And that’s true, and it gives us a sense of comfort in the scary decision-making process. But that’s because we don’t like the idea of something being irreversible. Yes, you can go back to your old job, or your old boyfriend, or your last apartment. But is that the answer you’re seeking deep down in your heart and soul? My sense is you want a shake-up. And I’m sorry: To get a shake-up, you’re going to have to make irreversible decisions.
Don’t buy the travel insurance. Say no to the receipt.
Go back, but only long enough to remind yourself why you left.
Dwell, but care about yourself enough to stop it when it’s going too far.
Doubt, but remind yourself it’s a normal part of the process.
Let yourself be confused and in the grey-hued interim, instead of demanding clarity.
Definitely don’t look at social media too long.
And for the love of God, don’t think about it too much.