Introspection is to an introvert what a social event is to an extrovert,
it revives us…
Every now and again I enjoy reflecting on where I am in my life, what I can be grateful for, what I am not happy with, what I want to change and what lessons I’ve learnt along the way.
For quite some time I have been searching for that “thing” that sets my soul on fire, a reason to wake up in the morning.
I often joke that I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up. I am, presently, a lawyer and am grateful to have employment. There are days where I enjoy what I do and days where I need a bit of extra motivation to be productive. I am not as passionate about the law as some other people in the field who eat, breathe and sleep law, but, I am passionate about being busy, keeping my mind busy and being mentally stimulated and law has always offered me just that.
Yet, it hasn’t been enough and the past few years I have attempted to find what that one thing is that will fulfill me.
**Kindly note that I am not talking about my personal life and that I am eternally grateful for my husband, my son, my mom and friends and feel so fulfilled in those areas of my life**
I have wanted my “9 to 5” to be my passion and to make and keep me in a state of euphoria. Law does not quite seem to do the trick because it is an ugly industry, where your desk is your battlefield and your mouth and quick wit are your weapons. It gets tiring and draining to be in constant conflict.
So I was searching and I tried a few things by trying to assess what my passions are and finding things to fit into my ideas:
I understand nutrition and I know the human body fairly well. I enjoy working out and I understand what to do to achieve certain goals. So I started my own company “The Movement Pretoria”. I gave classes twice a week to ladies working at a Tertiary Institution and I enjoyed it. I enjoyed seeing them become fitter and I enjoyed engaging with them about a topic that I knew a lot about and had a passion for. My long-term goal was to be able to open my own studio, work for myself and determine my own hours while doing something I enjoyed. Yet, the mental stimulation wasn’t there for me. I think after so many years in law I enjoy those urgent, last-minute deadlines and the adrenaline that comes along with it. The Movement Pretoria did not ignite that same feeling within me, and I decided to move onto the next thing.
I started prepping for a bikini contest and realised that I enjoyed Coke (the drinking kind) waaay too much. I think after having denied myself so much for three (3) years while dancing, I was over it. So we moved onto our next idea…
(PS: Yes, my diet was as short and fleeting as the previous paragraph.)
I like beautiful things and I like making things around me beautiful. What better way than to plan weddings and events? You are around people who are busy creating their dream day and you are helping them achieve that dream. I decided to open White Veil Weddings with my friend and we started out with a mutual dream of (once again) determining our own hours, earning a living and spreading joy. However, after the first conversation about flower arrangements I realised that maybe this is not entirely my area of interest. So WVW fizzled even before it really got started.
I even looked into buying into a franchising opportunity – which I still think I would do very well in, but the financial exposure would have landed either me or my husband in some or other mental institution or a street corner. (Ok, I’m exaggerating, but it was a substantial amount of money and I think my husband is so grateful I did not go down that path.)
Any other ideas?
I did research on possible courses to do, which possible career paths to follow: importing and selling of clothes, fashion design, interior decorating, makeup artist, the list is never-ending.
Until, one day, without putting much thought into it, I decided to create my blog:
Defendants, Dummies and Dresses.
I have always enjoyed writing. I am better at writing my answers or feelings down than I am talking about them. I have always received a myriad of compliments on my writing and have been asked by many to write something for them, ranging from a WhatsApp to an article to a press-release.
Without really thinking about it or making a fuss about it or making hundreds of plans around it, Defendants, Dummies and Dresses was born.
Something changed. I felt like I had a reason to wake up in the mornings that was all my own. I felt recharged, excited and happy. I looked forward to writing and I looked forward to thinking of ideas of what to blog about. I started looking at my Instagram account as a marketing tool. My creativity which, for such a long time was suppressed, could finally find its outlet.
Moral of my very long autobiography
I sincerely apologise for sharing my whole long story prior to sharing what I actually learnt through this whole process:
I didn’t have to look for another job or find another career path to be happy. I didn’t have to spend thousands or take out an additional study loan to study something else. I didn’t have to put our house and / or family at risk by opening a new business. I didn’t have to do something phenomenal to experience something life-changing.
I had it within me all along. My passion and that which comes naturally to me was the exact thing that I had to do to be happy. I had to be myself to be happy. That’s all.
You know what? I’m actually enjoying my “9 to 5” again. I enjoy setting new goals for myself within my current workplace and I feel like I’m not a nagging, drag anymore.
If you, like I did a while back, feel unaccomplished or incomplete or as if you need that something “more”, maybe you should stop looking all around you, stop wondering what your passion and interests are, stop doing research on the highest-paying jobs, and ask yourself one question: What am I good at? That thing you could do when you were eight-years old and everyone thought was so awesome about you. That hobby you had at school before the world told you what you had to do or had to be? Do that.
Find what sets your soul on fire, and do that. Even if it isn’t the thing that pays the bills, you’ll be happier for it.
PS: Baby, not rugby.