Glimmers of Joy
Happy New Year everyone!
With a new year comes a new life. Yesterday was my last full day at work. I still have to finish cleaning out my office and then again tomorrow to turn in my keys, but I’m officially no longer a RE/MAX agent. Feels strange. For so many years I worked 70-80 hours a week. In addition to selling real estate I have been Broker-In-Charge of our Kill Devil Hills office for a number of years and for 2.5 of those years I was also General Manager of the entire company, taking care of four franchises and 60 agents. When I look back, I really don’t know how I did it all.
What I do know is that I have not been happy. I struggle with this. I tell myself I should be grateful for everything that the Universe has given me. And I am grateful. But I am not happy. For a long time I convinced myself that I didn’t need to be happy, that happiness was an illusion, that nobody is really “happy.” I decided that it was enough to be content. So I plodded through life, struggling to achieve a state of contentment, yet carrying around this vague feeling of discontent much of the time.
As with most things, I saw a pattern in my discontentment. I seem to have a ten-year attention span. Every ten years or so I move and change careers. For a while, I am content. I thrive on the change, the new challenge, the expansion of my mind as I learn new talents. But the moment I start to achieve success I again grow uneasy and unsettled. My father says it’s because I have the wanderlust. I have always told myself that it’s because I get bored; that I need the new challenge; that my talents are best suited for start-up operations or restructurings. So I just recreate my life every ten years in order to ignore the feeling of the endlessness of it all.
I’m just beginning to realize that Dad’s assessment is closer to the truth. I do have the wanderlust. At its best, I saw that as a criticism; at its worst, an accusation of deficient character. Only recently I realized that there’s nothing wrong with having the wanderlust. In fact, Dad probably never meant it as a criticism. I was the one who took it that way.
Maybe this has come about because I am more comfortable in my own skin than I have ever been and I simply don’t care what others think of me. It gives me a certain freedom to pursue the things about which I am passionate: travel, photography and writing. Finally, I am being true to myself. And in the past few weeks, as I approached the time of leaving one life and running toward a new life, I began to feel lighter, freer, happier. On a couple of occasions I even felt the glimmer of complete and utter joy. Granted, it was fleeting. But I have a suspicion that this is just the beginning; that once I am on my true path my life will be suffused with constant joy. Here’s to hoping, and to a wonderful new year.