When To Say When

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Have you ever known in your gut that “the big step” you were about to take would be a huge mistake, but you went ahead and did it anyway? Like marrying the wrong person, choosing a habit or protocol out of convenience, or a logical career path to please someone. You listened to everyone else and their rationalizations about your dilemma, and all those opinions outweighed your feelings and overruled your instinct.

How many times have you gone against your better judgment only to regret it?

And how long did it take you to stand up and say when?

Still haven’t worked up the courage?

When will that happen?

After you’ve completely lost your identity to a relationship? In the middle of the Bar Exam? After your second child? On your death bed?

Every time I’ve gone against my inner knowing, I’ve paid dearly. Bad relationships, worse jobs, paths I had no intention of traveling. And I knew better. Deep in my gut, I knew. But I didn’t listen. Live and learn, right?

Standing up for yourself, what you want, what you know is right for you, isn’t necessarily easy. But if you don’t do it, who will?

Lately, I’m encountering people who are dissatisfied with their lives, but afraid to say when. They remain in situations or relationships that no longer serve and don’t fulfill any of their desires.

When do you say when?

When you feel safe? When you can afford to? When others involved will be accepting?

You know when you know. But you must be aware that you know. And you must act on what you know. Pay attention and listen to inner self, your physical body, your progress toward your desires. Take inventory. Are you where you expected to be in your life? Have you ticked off an acquisition list only to find yourself empty or even miserable with all that you thought would bring you success?

Ask the questions:

What is missing?

Why did I want that?

Who would this affect besides me?

How would I be able to manage it?

When would be the best time to say when?

Your “when” might be a year from now or ten minutes from now.

Quick story. A dear friend held a childhood dream of doing hair, yet her financial life took her on a corporate path. By her forties, she was asking when to say when. When she finally did, a health scare placed the dream on the back burner again. For another year, she questioned, “When?”

She’d already been accepted at a school but had no idea how to pay for it or how she would survive the intense schedule.  Just before Christmas she went to work and said, “I think I’m going to start school January 5th.” She didn’t know all the answers to how, but she trusted her gut that her timing was right. She scored a full scholarship at 43. I’m pleased to say that she just graduated and is now working in a salon, thrilled to pieces that she is finally doing what she loves.

Is there such a thing as perfect timing? Everyone’s when will depend on their own variables. But if you don’t pay attention to that little voice pressing you to set a time frame, you’ll never achieve a dream, or get out of your undesirable situation, back to yourself, or live to see your true potential.

Destiny won’t invite herself through a closed door. You decide when to let her in.

You decide when to say when.

You decide.

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