I recently celebrated my 36th birthday and I’ve never felt happier to have a fresh start.
Aging is an incredible gift and one thing I’ve learned so far is that there is nothing more valuable than time.
It is such a precious commodity that once we have lost it, we can’t get it back so in the interest of building my best life, I have learned to protect my time with deliberate intention in how I spend it and a fierce passion for being present in the moment. Since making the decision to step away from my career and focus on my family, it’s been the best use of my time that I can remember in ages.
Don’t get me wrong – I am still ambitious AF.
I have big dreams that are evolving every single day right now, but I was so busy building what I thought was my dream career, that I was missing out on the most beautiful, intimate moments with my family. I wasn’t achieving the right balance or integration that would allow me to be present for them while I accomplish the goals I had set for myself. So when I was faced with that huge decision of how to move forward, I chose to make the hard choice and focus on one day at a time of reframing my ambitions in harmony with the needs of my family.
The memories we have made this summer have been perfect! I have enjoyed so many happy days with Mike and our girls that I know have meant so much to us all and will be core memories for the girls as they grow up. We’ve seen friends, we’ve seen family and we’ve had both full days and lazy days. I have also finally gotten my house back in order and have been taking better care of us all – mind, body & soul – which has had the most positive effect on our family. THIS is where I belong and THIS is where I want to be.
35 was a wild ride that started with a full scale kitchen renovation that had my home turned upside down for 10 weeks.
I am so grateful that we were able to do that reno because I love our space even more now, but it was definitely stressful and put significant strain on our family. I was fortunate enough to have a break from the stress when I took off for a girls trip to Mexico in November last year and got to come home to a completed reno, but then we went full swing into the holiday season and it was chock FULL of entertaining & events that left me going into January of this year completely exhausted.
Throughout January, every single one of my family members needed extra special attention that took every ounce of my energy to take care of everyone. Maisie had been bitten by a dog, Mike had Covid and Sophia had to travel to Edmonton for a minor surgery so between all of that, I didn’t have time to think or focus on anything else. I was in survival mode but I knew it and whenever my family needs me like that, I just settle in and ride it out because that’s my job and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Once everyone was recovered, I threw all of my energy into ICONIC ’90’s which was an epic success but was planned in a whirlwind of only 28 days.
Although the event did not make any money, I call it a success because the room was full with exactly the kind of female energy that I love to surround myself with. I was so proud to share space with every single woman there and in that evening, I was perfectly in my element.
Have you ever felt perfectly in your element?
Isn’t is magical?
It’s that kind of energy that I want to create more of moving forward in my life which is exactly what drives everything I do to with Elle Bell Sales Co.
On the heels of that event, I made the decision to leave my 7.5 year career in the insurance industry in pursuit of a partnership that would allow me to take my career and my business to the next level.
Little did I know, leaving the insurance industry would turn out to be a much more emotional experience than I expected and although I didn’t realize it at the time, I was saying good-bye to an identity that I had created for myself and that loss needed to be grieved & acknowledged. I have never had to do more work on myself personally than I have done since making that decision. It was one of the hardest but best things I’ve ever done for myself and as proud as I am of what I accomplished during that time in my life, I am happy to have closed that chapter to move whole-heartedly towards the things I am truly passionate about.
Plus, I have to admit that I am enjoying not talking about death, disability & critical illnesses all day every day….. the vibes are just brighter over here nowadays and I am here for it!
My attempt at a partnership and having a full time job was an amazing experience and although I was not successful in moving forward with it, I am grateful for everything I took away from it. I had an incredible amount of freedom & flexibility as an insurance advisor but I wasn’t necessarily inspired by what I was doing which is what made the partnership so exciting & attractive. I felt I would be able to better use my skills in a marketing agency and although it would require a huge lifestyle change, I was ready for it! (Or at least I thought I was.) I am realizing now that I changed & grew a lot throughout Covid so when the opportunity to shake things up came my way, I ran head first for it! This was my chance to really GROW and build a business that would take me to the next level of entrepreneurship. It was everything I had ever wanted.
So I put the work in. Man, did I ever put the work in!
But sometimes no matter how hard a person works at something or how badly you want it, it just isn’t the right thing. No matter how hard I tried to create balance & integration with my new career, there were just too many roadblocks that I couldn’t get past. The more I gave of myself to the business, the more something or someone else had to give. My family and my lifestyle is accustomed to me being available whenever I need to be which unfortunately doesn’t jive well with the needs of a growing business. It was a heartbreaking decision to realize that I had to make that tough choice but now that I have made it and sat with it, I feel relieved & thankful. Relieved that my family has me back in the capacity that they need & deserve and thankful that I was able to have that experience because I learned so much. My time spent on that endeavour was by no means a failure because it didn’t work out, it was an incredible success because of what I was able to be a part of & what it taught me about myself.
So as I enter this fresh new year, I am pausing to look back on 35 and all of the lessons it taught me. It was an intense year of some really hard growth but I made it through with the support of my family, friends and a therapist who has helped provide the clarity I needed to acknowledge the lessons learned. This kind of work isn’t easy and having to own my decisions – publicly and personally – has sometimes hurt like hell, but sometimes we really do need that kind of hard growth in order to break free of the patterns and habits that were holding us back. 35 was truly a growing season in my life but I have walked into 36 feeling fresh & excited for whatever I choose to create for myself, my family and my career moving forward.
One thing I know for sure is that aging is a gift denied to far too many so despite any hard times I have gone through or will go through, I am simply grateful for another day of growing on this side of the soil.
Have a happy day my friend!