I’ve tried writing about losing my dream job many times over the past few months. I get a few sentences in and stop and forget about writing it. Here’s the truth: I lost my dream job. I lost the path I had made for myself since graduating high school. Go to college. Become a teacher. Work in this district. And I lost it.
I truly spend months grasping at straws trying to fix the pieces I felt I lost. Losing my dream job was one thing, but I felt like I lost a part of myself in the process. A year out from losing my job I’ve been able to reflect and process everything and I’ve learned and grown throughout this process- that’s what life is all about!
I’ve learned so much the past year about myself, change, growth, and what truly matters to me. Throughout any loss, there is a period of grief, followed by acceptance, and then being able to move on. That’s exactly what I did! I’m going to tell you 3 things I learned and how I used those lessons to begin again.
Why Losing My Dream Job Was The Best Thing to Happen
1. My Identity is No Longer Rooted in My Job – Using Affirmations
I thought my whole purpose was to be a teacher in this district. I was going to move back to my hometown and teach in this district because it was the best in the state. And I did that. I would fill my classroom with kindness and playfulness, respecting children’s thoughts and feelings, and being the teacher whose gentle nature was spot on.
Little did I know that my kindness and gentle nature would be my downfall. I was too kind to teach in this district. I was too gentle and needed to be more strict. Everything I valued and loved about myself as a teacher was wrong and I didn’t know what to do.
To be fair, for a while I coped by turning those criticisms into a joke. That helped short term but I was needing a long-term solution. Before this job, I loved how kind and gentle I was. After losing this job I hated that about me. Now I’ve turned it into my strength.
This job turned something I loved about myself into something I hated and I wanted to love that part of myself again. That’s when I turned to affirmations. I wanted to affirm those pieces of my that I loved. I was no longer too kind to others. Instead, I began telling myself, “My kindness is what draws others to me and is a gift I share with the world.”
Changing the way I viewed what was “broken” in me made me realize it is one of my biggest strengths.
2. While My Path Led to This School, it also Led Away from it
I truly believe that everything happens for a reason, that there is a purpose for everything. While I was so focused on achieving this one goal, I wasn’t really looking big-picture at what my life could be during or after it. Teaching was the end goal…so I thought.
When the storm started rushing through my life I thought everything was over. I felt so defeated- like nothing was ever going to go right again. And then life went on. Not all storms come in to disrupt our life, sometimes they come in to clear a path.
Clearing a path it did. Some doors were closed, but so many opened up. For the first time in a long time, I could do whatever I wanted (within reason). I tried a lot of different things. Failed at a lot of different things. Took some courses and found a path that would help give me the life and freedom I desired.
As sad as I was to let this dream go, failing at that dream has opened my world to so many more opportunities. Even though life gets hard, there is always a rainbow on the other side.
3. I Created New Dreams and Visions for My Life That Aren’t Rooted in a Job
Moving on is hard. Letting go is hard. But it is all part of the great joys of life. Losing one dream didn’t mean I was a failure. It meant I was on the wrong path.
I’ve taken time this past year to really deep dive and figure out what I truly want from life. None of what I desire from life is rooted in a job. Your dreams and desires don’t have to be rooted in a job. Having a job plays a part, but it is, and will never be, the end all be all.
I want to live a life that inspires others to be kind. A life that is full of freedom from a 9-5 job. I want a life that is rooted in family. I want to help others find that kindness and peace within them to live an intentionally peaceful life. No more stretching yourself too thin. No more sticking in a job that drains you more than it fills you.
Teaching is a hard job y’all. I knew it was going to be hard, but it was 100 times harder than I anticipated. There are a lot of factors at play in that, but I know now that there are so many other ways I can use my gifts to serve the world.
Living Intentionally Peaceful
Change is scary. For someone who is really flexible, unknown change was terrifying. But I made it out, and I made it out a whole different person. I’m owning my kindness. I’m owning mistakes I’ve made in the past because they got me to be here. Just as your mistakes got you here and made you the person you are.
Let me know in the comments, what is your life vision?