It’s been one year since we closed on our house. I’ve been reflecting a lot lately on the past year, and thought I would share.
I’ve thought about how, 18 months ago, I was pretty darn close to rock-bottom. I was lost, frustrated and my anxiety was at an all-time high. I wasn’t happy with my life, but I didn’t know what to do about it.
I decided to start seeing a counselor to help me navigate this weird, quarter life crisis I had found myself in. I confessed to her all of my anxiety about being afraid of taking the next steps in my life. I told her I was afraid to apply for new jobs, because I was afraid I wasn’t good enough. I told her I was afraid of not being engaged to Evan, because I felt like people were judging us for not being engaged after almost 7 years. I told her I desperately wanted to buy a home, but I was afraid I didn’t have enough money because I didn’t have 20% of a down payment (which, in reality, who can anymore?).
She listened to all of my fears, and she always responded: “So what?”
So what if people judged Evan and I for not being engaged? Was I happy and confident in our relationship? (Yes I was/am)–that is all that matters. I was afraid of not being good enough for my next job? Apply anyway and let them be the judge of that. I was afraid of not having a 20% down payment? Did I have enough to put some sort of DP down? (Yes) Did I want a home more than anything in the world? (Yes)–Then buy a house.
This process of challenging my worries and fears with the question “So what?” has been life-changing. The thing is, I learned that, if I was worried about something, that was less of a genuine worry that something wasn’t going to work out, and more of a sign that my perfectionism was kicking in. Perfectionism was holding me back from going after what I truly wanted, and being afraid of risk was keeping me from reaching my goals.
I’m still nervous about things, don’t get me wrong–but I try to remind myself “so what.” Even if things go wrong, I know that I will figure it out. Mistakes/failure were just a challenge to try harder and do better. Instead of allowing myself to be afraid to try, I’ve learned to embrace the unknown, while having faith in myself (and Evan), that I/we will figure it out.
It’s amazing what can happen in a year. When I learned to say “so what” to my worries, things started to really turn around. I did apply for and get a new job, Evan and I bought a home together and Evan proposed. All the fears that I felt buried by worked out in the end.
I write this to the Devon of January 2017. I wish I could’ve given her a sneak peek of this moment right now–I am curled up on the sofa with Evan, in our home that we absolutely love, getting ready to go to work in the morning in the new job that I was too afraid to apply to, with a ring on my finger (that I am so proud of Evan for accomplishing). Dev–it’s amazing what can happen in a year. Be patient. Have faith in yourself. Let it be. This too shall pass.