When one friend calls to say she’s in need of a life change, I listen. When two friends call with the same news, I take notice. But when three friends call in the same week, I take notes.
Natalie, in her 60s, lives in California. After visiting me last year she called and said, “Seeing how happy you are in a small place with not a lot of stuff and more time to enjoy life, that’s what I want. I’m selling my house.” Her home sold quickly and, faced with a looming closing date, began sorting through closets, cabinets, and a packed garage. “I kept a donation box by the front door and filled it
every day,” Natalie said. She soon found a beautiful condo with “no pool to clean, no landscape to care for and a lot less rooms to clean.” Change, while scary, “Is so refreshing,” said Natalie.
Then Julie texted me. “Got time to talk? I need advice.” Julie’s in her early 40s and within four months sold her home, quit her job, lost 20 pounds and is, aside from being “happier than I’ve been in years,” added, “I’m ready for a real change in my life.” Now she spends her days writing and playing with her dog.
Finally there’s Ghia, in her mid-40s, who sent me this Facebook message: “I finally got rid of my four storage units as you suggested, but I’ve now got all this sentimental leftover stuff in my apartment. How do I get rid of it so I can have room in my home to do my work?” I called Ghia. “Your past is holding you back,” I told her. “Inanimate objects, while they can bring wonderful memories, will never bring the kind of happiness you get from spending time doing what you love.”
Human beings are creatures of habit. We eat the same foods, wear the same clothes, and run the same Saturday errands. Some stick to routines because of comfort, but as scary as change can be, big or small, the challenge it presents is exactly what can make life so exciting if you let it.