A year ago, my husband and I left our hometown in northern Indiana for Austin, Texas. We sold our house, alot of our belongings and Mark even left his job of eleven years to take a leap of faith to start life in a new place. The path through life isn’t linear. After staying in Texas for a year, we decided it wasn’t going to be the place we take root and call our home. Mark and I are sharing how we came to this decision and what it means to each of us.
Ashley: When your heart says pivot…pivot.
Sometimes, I get these little signs that tell me it’s time to move in my life. Do something different, change directions, shed some skin…pivot. And listening to these signs is anything but easy because following them usually means doing something that’s scary and requires a trust, faith and belief. And while I knew that these signs are always in an effort to catapult me forward in my life, I’d silence them and stay where I was because being afraid felt easier somehow.
A year ago, Mark and I laid in the African Sahara dessert, staring up at the stars. We talked honestly about where we both are in our lives and what’s keeping us bound both individually and as a team. I thought alot about who I was being back home in my life and why I was keeping my head inside my turtle shell. I knew in my gut it was time to take the next step forward in my life and all I had to do was stick my neck out and move. We both knew we were going to go home and make some big changes. Otherwise, we’ll keep staying where we’ve been and getting the same results. We both knew if there is ever a time to pivot, it’s now.
We went back to Indiana, packed everything up and three months later called Texas home. And now, less than a year later, we’re getting ready to move to Miami. Why? Because it’s time to pivot again.
When we visited Florida last month, we stood together looking out at the ocean. We talked about our lives, our life in Austin and possibility. There’s something about getting out of your normal environment that helps you see things more clearly. It’s like you can step back and really see yourself from a bird’s eye view. We asked ourselves, “Is Austin our place?” We were explorers in that moment, just like in Africa. The next morning, we knew what we needed to do.
When it’s time to pivot…pivot. Change is the only constant and you’ll never be able to run or hide from it. It always catches up to you in one form or another. Don’t let that form be regret. Be afraid and then do it anyways! Stick your neck out and live. Be an explorer of your life. Stop, ask yourself what your next step is and really listen. Your heart knows.
Mark: Don’t be afraid to set fire to your life and start over
Austin was a cool place but it wasn’t different enough to keep my interest.
Ashley and I went on a vacation to Ft Myers beach early May. When we arrived and looked out at the water it was captivating. I don’t typically like staring at “nothing” but that’s exactly what I found myself doing. There’s just something calming about it and it’s something that Austin doesn’t have. On the morning of our return flight we decided to explore the possibility of moving again. We decided we were going to skip our flight and drive across the state to Ft Lauderdale and Miami. The following morning we rented a car and off we went. We spent a day in each city, flew home and created a plan of action.
One thing I learned is that making big changes gets easier. It’s like doing a new exercise and utilizing muscles that aren’t used to stress. When you keep repeating that stress you compensate for it and grow. Mentally preparing for this move was much easier than the last. Last Friday was my final day of work and just like last time I don’t have a job lined up where we’re going. I must be some type of masochist to want to put myself through this again and yes, there is still stress and uncertainty. I know I made it through the first big change so I know I can do it again.
I have never been one to take risks in life out of fear of negative consequences. That fear has shaped most of my life and prevented me from truly engaging in it. I used to feel that being able to have a big house, expensive cars and clothes was the path to happiness. I now know that experience, both good and bad and relationships with others is the path. That path may be lined with palm trees, but maybe it isn’t. The important thing is I decided to walk that path to find out.
This is where we sat down and wrote out a list of pros & cons of moving to Miami