I used to struggle with the idea of abandoning one goal in pursuit of another. When I decided to cease work on The Banter Press (a Lifestyle blog I started in 2016), I felt as though as I was taking the easy way out and quitting.
I had ambitious plans to turn The Banter Press into a legitimate online publication and ultimately a primary source of income. However, after stumbling into burnout territory and then paving a refreshing path to better health, I realised that this unplanned journey was more fulfilling than anything I had previously pursued.
In spite of my new found passion and excitement, this shift in direction sparked a lot of internal conflict. I felt guilty and ashamed, like I was somehow tarnishing my reputation as a reliable person. I was afraid of being referred to as the quitter - the girl who didn’t follow through.
What I didn’t realise then was that there is a big difference between quitting something you love because it’s hard and quitting something because your heart is no longer in it.
Sticking with a meaningless goal (especially when you’re craving something different) doesn’t make you committed or loyal. It means you’re scared to change.
We tend to put immense pressure on ourselves to have it all figured out. To know exactly what our goals are and to follow through with those intentions.
This linear perspective, however, doesn’t account for personal evolution and natural progression. It doesn’t account for life experience. It doesn’t account for change.
As we experience life, we learn. As we learn, we grow. As we grow, we change. And this personal evolution can reset our perspective, values, desires, priorities, which ultimately influence our intentions.
To give ourselves a sense of purpose and direction - to give meaning to our actions. To bring excitement and joy into our lives. To feel accomplished. To feel fulfilled.
If our goals no longer align with our principles and vision, then we’ve got to have an honest conversation with ourselves. Why place time, energy and resources into something that isn’t backed by a powerful why?
It takes a lot of guts to admit that something isn’t working out. When we find the courage to pivot in the direction of opportunity, we should be applauding and celebrating our passionate intentions, instead of feeling guilty for prematurely ending the previous chapter.
It’s important to recognise that the time we spend working on goals that don’t pan out as predicted isn’t wasted time. It forms part of our story - our journey - our life lessons - all of which we can take with us as we embark on our new mission.
The next time you find yourself at a crossroads, remember that choosing to chart a new course is an act of courage.
Sometimes, the universe has something else in store for you and if you don’t listen to your gut (that is screaming, “Pivot!!!”), you might find yourself in the land of mediocrity. And let’s be honest, it’s not a fulfilling place to be.
If you’ve decided to pivot or change your goals this year, we’d love to hear from you. Maybe you’re in the process of pivoting or the pivot process is complete? Share your story with us at firstname.lastname@example.org