Part 2: The End, or a New Beginning?
This is part two of a two-part article on my six-year journey chasing the concept of modern-day success: wanting more, achieving more, and having more and the price that came with it.
In part two I share how I was able to reimagine a completely new chapter for my life from a place that most would consider “career-breaking”.
Here we go:
A few days later, I was sitting on the porch of our home enjoying a latte and the crisp morning air with my husband. We sat silently, enjoying the mixture of birds chirping and cars passing by. For the first time in my career, I had failed, and I didn’t know what to do next. What I did know, though, was that this experience would not define my worth.
Then it hit me; the answer was right in front of me. My PIP (Performance Improvement Plan) contained the clarity and prioritization I’d been wanting since starting this role. Rather than being a list of failures, I realized it was a list of ways I could grow and succeed. By reframing this List of Failures to a List of Opportunities, I got to work, and over the next few months, delivered on each item in that document.
Sixty-two days later, I was taken off the PIP.
In the weeks that followed, I reflected on this experience and realized that I had spent most of my career chasing the concept of modern-day success: wanting more, achieving more, and having more.
I had also paid the price in terms of my health and my quality of life. I realized that I had been focused entirely on my outer world and had never taken the time to explore and define how success felt on the inside. I had convinced myself I’d be happy when I got to a certain level.
The truth is, happiness is always an inside job.
The dictionary defines bankruptcy as “completely lacking in a particular quality or value.” For me, it was time to declare bankruptcy on this external model for success I had followed for so long.
While this did not mean I would no longer pursue the external appearance of success if I chose to, it did mean I would never again allow the look of success to be my only focus or driver.
Two months after being taken off the PIP, I tendered my resignation to pursue the exciting and intimidating world of coaching and consulting where I could help others through the incredible self-discovery I had just navigated.
More than two years later, my coaching & consulting practice thrives and fulfills me daily. I take time to enjoy each moment, celebrate my challenges, and savor the journey. Savoring the journey is not a one-time check the box kind of thing, it’s a moment to moment choice that I make every day.
As Buddha says: Happiness is a journey, not a destination.
It is a priceless feeling to know I am doing what I am meant to do for the rest of my life. I serve as a guide to individuals & companies who believe that talent matters and get that success has not only a look but a feel and want support to explore creating a powerful experience of both for themselves, their teams and their company.
Over time, those I serve are transformed as they see the impact of creating their world from the inside-out. Ultimately, they come to deeply know their worth is a currency defined by themselves alone, and no market or economy can alter this value without permission.
The greatest gift of this experience was seeing my father in a new light. I write this with tears in my eyes because I see my dad had it figured out all along. He never cared about the title, prestige, money, or fancy things. He lived his life for the joy of contributing, serving, and working to support his family. It’s all so crystal clear now.
For him, the feeling of success was all that ever mattered. Thank you, Daddy, for sharing your wisdom six years after we said goodbye.
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