“There comes a day when you realize turning the page is the best feeling in the world, because you realize there’s so much more to the book than the page you were stuck on.” — Zayn Malik, 26, singer-songwriter
I was captivated by this quote by Zayn Malik, who rose to musical fame at the tender age 17 as a member of the English boy band, One Direction, in the early 2000s.
Such wisdom! May he retain that as he gets older.
Typically, as we age, we cling to things, situations and people who no longer serve our greater good – if they ever did. We are reluctant to examine who and what is best for us right this minute, because who and what we’ve always been and done is now a comfortable rut. And if it isn’t comfortable, we tell ourselves that things could get better.
Sometimes they do. But sometimes, getting out of the rut could be the best thing for us.
Of course, starting over, creating new beginnings can be scary. Better the devil we know than the new devils that could be lurking around every tree trunk, right?
I mean – what if we choose wrong? What if things don’t go the way we want them to? What if that new job doesn’t turn out the way we hoped it would? What if your partner – flaws and all – is the best you’ll ever find? Or deserve? What if the new business doesn’t bottoms out?
What, oh what, will we do then?
If we’re like Zayn Malik, we realize that there is so much more to our book of life than the page we’re stuck on. And we deliberately turn the page.
The other 80% of use cling to what and who we know…until – if we’re lucky – that that book is ripped from our hands, taking away our choice.
I know what you’re thinking: What’s lucky about being forced out of a job, a home or a relationship? It’s better than the alternative, which is often to die early, unhappy and unfulfilled.
At least if we are forced to turn the page, we have a chance to embrace a new beginning.
Here are some points to ponder when you are faced with making uncomfortable changes.
- What if the rest of your life turned out to be the best of your life?
- Doing the same-old, same-old won’t open new doors for you.
- You don’t need a major life event – or even turning the calendar over to a new year – to change. Every new day is a chance to change your life.
- Live your life by design, not default.
- When faced with a life-altering change, ask yourself, “What can I create from this?”
- If the prospect of a new beginning terrifies you, remember the caterpillar and the acorn. Every ending carries with it the seeds of a new beginning. The results won’t look the same, but not necessarily worse.
Magical thinking — waiting, wishing and hoping for things to get better – won’t make it so. Deciding to make a change, creating a plan and then getting off your butt and doing it may not make it so either. But your chances of success will improve tremendously if you put aside the magic and focus on the work.
Don’t expect to see a change if you don’t make one.
Since I started with a quote, it seems only right to end with one:
“Life is change. Growth is optional. Choose wisely.” ~ William Somerset Maugham