In my search for change, the Paradise Hunter contest was THE turning point for me. When it ended, I felt different, empowered to keep working to move forward. Having this blog helped me get through the tough days (which was everyday by this point in my career) because I had something else to focus on. I wasn’t defined by being a dentist. Blogging provided the missing link for me to feel whole through all of this. It not only gave me the creative outlet I was craving, but it also gave me a voice. I had shut that voice down and ignored it for so long, that I could finally start to learn to listen to it– and not worry about others overhearing what I had to say.
While I still struggled at work, overall my energy had shifted tremendously. I was no longer obsessed with pushing something away from me. Instead the focus switched to filling my life with stuff I loved. Sometimes we get a little help, and life brings us what we attract to it.
This shift created the movement I needed.
I started this blog in November, and in January I participated in a 9-month goal-setting workshop led by my therapist. I know. Goal-setting? Yuck! I’ve always disliked setting goals, but this approach was different. It incorporated the idea that we don’t have to force our way into accomplishing our goals. We can find a way to reach them more effortlessly, with less pressure. Having that freedom in my approach allowed me to be much more excited about setting a goal and going for it.
Shortly after the workshop began, I had entered another travel contest. This time my mentality was very different from my approach to the Paradise Hunter. I did it for the heck of it, this time without any expectations. I had a blast doing it, and realized it didn’t have to “get me anywhere.” As I reflected on entering this contest and my approach to it, I had a sudden epiphany: finding my work didn’t have to be miserable.
I could find my work through play and have fun while doing it.
I mean, it didn’t have to be this serious pursuit. I could play with unlikely possibilities and choose zany things I liked because it was fun for me. I was convinced that would continue to open the right doors for new opportunities.
Besides, a little dreaming never hurt anyone.