6 May 2015,
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There’s no such thing as ruining your life. Life’s a pretty resilient thing, it turns out.

~ Sophie Kinsela ~


It’s been about two years since I completed a fairly significant remodel of my home. Two years later, I still make it a daily practice to look around in gratitude for the beautiful space I am blessed to live in.

Remodeling was a project I put off for far too long, giving myself all sorts of seemingly “good reasons” for waiting:

  • It wasn’t the right time
  • It would take too long
  • It would cost too much

Instead of challenging what I told myself, I muddled along tolerating my environment. Then one day, I realized I might die without ever getting to live in the beautiful, cozy, welcoming sanctuary I dreamed of creating when I first purchased my home.

I know – that’s a pretty morbid thought, right? But…it was the kick in the rear wake-up call I needed to get into action and finally make my dream come true.

The Truth Can Be Ugly

There’s often an ugly truth hidden underneath the reasons we put things off. Here’s the ugly truth I didn’t want to admit to. The reasons I told myself about putting off my remodel were a cover up for the “real” reason.

The real reason was that I didn’t want to disrupt my life, even for something I badly wanted. Rebuilding and remodeling are uncomfortable, inconvenient, and messy.

Two sentences from the movie Fight Club popped into my head when I realized the ugly truth:

  • This is your life, and it’s ending one minute at a time
  • On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero

That was an ice-cold-splash-in-the-face moment. But that’s what it took to finally boot me out of my comfort zone and into action to create my dream.

It Takes Courage to Rebuild Your Career and Life

I was lucky. I was able to choose to remodel. You don’t always get to choose.

Sometimes you are faced with outside circumstances that force you into making a change. When circumstances force you to rebuild your career or life, it’s not easy to remain resilient, especially when rebuilding stems from outside circumstances such as retirement or a layoff.

It takes courage not to lose heart. It takes courage not to focus on the unfairness or awfulness of what happened. It takes courage and resilience to look forward to new and unexplored opportunities.

When circumstances arise that force you to rebuild your career or life, you might take a lesson from nature’s resilience.  In nature, forest fires burn and healthier new trees grow. Volcanoes erupt and make new islands. Floods overtake the land and deposit rich, new soil. No matter how bad it looks at first, the seeds for new life abound beneath what looks like rubble on the surface.

Rebuilding is a Creative Process

Nature seems to understand that rebuilding is a creative process. Using your creativity to design a “Big Why” for rebuilding your career or life is a powerful first step.

  • There will be dust and rubble. Your Big Why will help you let go of outdated and outmoded stuff you no longer need (even if you love it) to make room for an updated career or life.
  • There will be chaos. Things won’t always go according to plan. Your Big Why will help you embrace uncertainty and go with the flow
  • There will be moments when you wish you could put everything back the way it was. You can’t. Your Big Why will help you recognize, accept, and delight in conquering each challenge as you rebuild.

The Results Will Be Worth It

Regardless of whether you choose to rebuild your career or life or whether it happens due to circumstances beyond your control, learning to be resilient will be worth it. You will come out the other side stronger, and with a deeper sense of who you are and what you are capable of.

You will come to understand and appreciate the ebb and flow of your life. The best part is that you’ll expand your comfort zone and you’ll find it easier to step outside of it in the future. That’s a valuable reward or “paycheck” for learning to be resilient!


Do you want help to rebuild your career or life? A Personal Insights Profile is a great tool to help you get started with designing your “Big Why”. Contact me to schedule a “get acquainted” coaching session to learn more.

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