In my early 30s, I found myself floundering through life. I never pictured my life to be a certain way, but somehow I knew it shouldn’t be the way it was. I had divorced and was back to dating, which turned out to be fun at times, but annoying most of the time. I had a great marketing position at a great company, which was also fun at times. When I look back, I couldn’t put my finger on exactly what it was I wanted in life or in love.
What I did know was that I love books and one day I would write one—that, I always believed. On my lunch breaks, I would often browse the books at Barnes & Noble. There was one book that kept calling to me. For about six months, I picked it up and put it down—never cracking it open and never reading the book jacket. But then one day I decided to read the inside flap:
“By the time she turned thirty, Elizabeth Gilbert had everything a modern, educated, ambitious American woman was supposed to want—a husband, a house in the country, a successful career. But instead of feeling happy and fulfilled, she was consumed with panic, grief and confusion.”
OH MY GOD. My heart literally beat out of my chest. This was me! I devoured that book and blubbered through it. And, you know what? I picked myself up, dusted myself off, and I did exactly what Elizabeth did. I ate, I prayed, and I loved.
The wonderful perk about my job was that I had a lot of vacation. Plus, I banked most of my sick days to use someday. Well, someday turned out to be right then. So I used my 30-day sabbatical from work and I went on a safari to Africa. I booked a trip to Italy with my mother. And, I meditated for ten days straight at an ashram, unplugging from the rest of the world.
That time I took for myself made all the difference in my life. Shortly after my jaunts around the world, I resumed my normal routine and then I was laid off from my job—a job that I had stayed at for much too long. The universe finally said, “If you’re not going to take the leap, I’m going to push you to it.”
The next year I spent networking, freelancing, and gaining more communication skills. I also met the man I would marry! I had an amazing support system with friends and family. Even though my life wasn’t perfect (is it ever?) and I did fear failure, I eventually took the leap. I launched my own marketing/PR business. It’s been nine years and I’ve never looked back.
Now I found another life-changing book…stay tuned for that post.
Eat, Pray, Love found me when I needed it most. I will always cherish it. It is the first signed book I ever splurged on. Is there a book that changed your life or some other experience, event, or person that has? I’d love to hear about it.
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