2 Roads Diverged in a Wood, and I-
I took the path most traveled...
I always thought I was a little unconventional. I was the first of my friends to get a passport and go to Europe. With a backpack. For a week and everything was pre-booked, but I had a backpack.
I was the first person in my group to get married. I'd never been interested in weddings, never imagined my own growing up, and my feminist self saw it as trappings of a masculine world - an engagement ring had become the modern dowry. My boyfriend's sisters were engaged and trying to out lavish each other's weddings. So he and I got married while we were in Vegas, of course. Our friends were afraid to come into the chapel, thinking we were tricking THEM into getting married. And, I stopped the minister during the vows. He'd said some nonsense about the man's responsibility being to provide for the woman - go out and work to give her what she needs - and the woman's responsibility being to make a nice home, have dinner ready every day. 1. My soon-to-be husband was a chef, so no way I was cooking. And 2. I earned considerably more than him. I told the minister I wasn't signing up for that, thank you very much.
(For the record, those friends I mentioned have now been married for nearly 20 years, and my husband and I have been divorced for 15.)
I was the impetus for my husband and me moving to London.
I was the impetus for my new partner and me to move to Dubai. I remember sitting with friends in London discussing our upcoming move. He said, wowza! Imagine moving to another country! Not many people do that! He was talking to an American, an Irish girl, and an Australian guy. Who all lived in London. Moving abroad wasn't really that unconventional.
So, despite doing things that seemed out of the norm, in reality, I ended up married, living a comfortable expat life, and working in corporate retail.
Cue a few years later, and my story is very different: I left a second marriage, Dubai, and finally corporate. But what I discovered is that I was still only superficially living an extraordinary life. On the outside, it looked awesome, but deep down it felt mediocre. People would say to me, Wow! How awesome that you’ve lived in London and Dubai and Malaysia, and you travel on your own and have been skydiving. And, I would reply, Well, no matter where you live you still end up in the same daily routine.
And, so when I found myself in Bali, my real transformation began. I had already set out on a new career, I had made new friends and traveled to new places. And, I was still pretty much going through the motions.
What I see as the impetus for my transformation is so simple - again, I won’t say it’s easy, because very few things actually are. When my mom came to visit, I decided I’d introduce affirmations to make sure we stayed on positive ground. You know the saying, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree? I know where my negative talk came from! All the I cant’s and I could never’s. And I also knew I needed a morning routine that would give me some quite time before coffee. My mom is a morning person. I was not. So, the affirmations started as a way of creating a positive routine that would give me some peace and quiet.
What I discovered was that I started talking in positives. I noticed all the good things happening around me. I started to feel better about myself. Some of these things are ways that other people would have seen or described me. But on the inside, I felt the opposite. Transforming my own negative self talk into positive affirmations started to train my brain, and now I am confident that these are truths.
I am confident and articulate
I am strong and fit
I deserve abundance
I trust myself
I am safe
I committed to these - wrote them down and read them over and over every morning.
I then set an intention for the day, and practiced gratitude, committing both of these to my daily diary as well.
And, something miraculous happened. My life changed.
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
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