You perfected the art of going to school. You breezed through college or Sixth Form. You got your A-levels, chose a degree, graduated and finally landed that position.
Your parents were delighted they could now refer to you as a ‘professional’. They could talk about the company you work for and how much you’re enjoying your job. They airily address their friends by saying ‘Oh she’s now in London, working for so and so, yes loving it."
Except you’re not.
Loving it, that is.
It’s ok, it’s even satisfying occasionally. But you have this dirty little secret.
You want more.
For me at least, it was a big sigh of relief just admitting it.
I had a job in a great company, I was earning more than I’d ever earned before, I lived in a lovely flat, went dancing now and again (one of my biggest passions) and yet...
I wanted more.
I wanted to work on my own terms. In another country. I wanted to travel and be creative in exactly the way I wanted to be. I didn’t want to be told what to do anymore.
I was so frustrated at times, yet in other moments so filled with terror: wondering if there was anything better out there - or if this was the best it got.
That this was it for the next 30 years and then some.
After all, I reasoned, I was working in a top company in the industry, with friendly people and benefits to match. They had trained me and looked after me. My role was reasonably secure. What's not to love?
And yet I didn't love it.
This was what I thought? This was how I 'repaid' them?
People used to say "How are things?” when I went home. I'd see old acquaintances, some of whom were struggling financially. I would open my mouth to complain about my job and then stop.
Who was I to want more when others had less?
I used to feel bad that I even thought about leaving.
Why should I get more good stuff even if I could?
I felt guilty about wanting something different.
Couldn't I just be grateful for what I had?
I felt guilty about hating the commute with a passion.
I felt guilty for having the perfect track record…and wanting to do something different. To mess it up.
It’s OK to want more.
It’s OK to want the world and icing on the top.
It’s ok to desire, to dream, to crave something else, something different. Something big. Something amazing.
When we make ourselves wrong for wanting, we make ourselves small. We hide our talents and gifts and deprive the world of them. We don’t give them the air they need to breathe and the water they need to grow.
Acknowledge your want, your dream and free yourself from the terror of other people’s judgement.
The only opinion about how successful you life is, is yours.
If you really lived that belief, what would you do about it? How would your life change?
Admit it, relish in it, delight in it. Even if only to yourself for now.
What will you admit you want today? And what will you do about it?