As you guys have probably seen, my content has been more consistent lately. I’ve been churning out cooking content for the past 12 weeks at a rapid rate. I have not slowed down one bit, in fact, I’ve ramped up. I’ve grown my TikTok following, increased my Instagram impressions by over 45K and I’ve successfully grown a highly engaged email listserve to over 300 people. Not to mention, that I’ve written, photographed, and published an e-cookbook called Cooking Made Easy and added author to my multi-hyphen self-title. I have worked out for 5 months straight and can say that I’m in the best shape of my life. But one question remains, why now, why am I so comfortable doing all this now?
My hubby and I were just having a conversation the other day about the current state of the world and how certain people are “thriving” and really using this time to dive into their passions while others are not. It made me reflect on my own experience in the COVID-19 era and think about how I’ve been coping with everything that’s happening around us.
As you guys read a few weeks ago in my post about what I’ve been up to while quarantined, you’ll notice that I’ve been taking everything in stride.
I think about the fact that, unlike many others, for the past year I’ve been in a social distancing, self-quarantine environment. What I mean by that is, since I left my full-time corporate gig at Macy’s last April, I’ve been on a journey to figure it out. I’ve been blessed to interview at some of the world’s biggest companies from Amazon to Facebook…but still was never offered a role.
In going through that gut-wrenching experience over and over again, it made me think that I was preparing for such a time as COVID-19. It made me question, why am I one of those people who are visibly thriving through such a hard time? Why is my productivity on 100 and why now? I don’t have the answer exactly, but I do have some thoughts on why I’m so comfortable now…In this post, I’ll share a few thoughts on why this might be.
God has been preparing me for the battle all along.
I truly believe that because of all the no’s and disappointments over the past year, I am in a position to look at the glass half-full during this time. Millions of people have lost their jobs or have been furloughed for a period of time. I can empathize with them because I understand what It feels like for an entire department to get dissolved and reorganized in a day. It is absolutely horrifying. Having gone through this myself, I know that day by day, it gets better and it gets a little easier to deal with mentally. We sometimes have to go through the battle and the disappointments to feel the sunshine on the other side. I’m not quite on the other side yet, at least I don’t think I am, but I can feel the wrays of God’s glory shining on me with all the blessings that have come my way.
I know how hard it is to be in the “waiting” period of life. Where you feel like if I just get to this goal, then xyz will happen. If I could just get started with my next career then we will have xyz…..let me let you in on a little secret, the magic is in the wait. The journey is in the wait. My husband and I read Bible plans together and we are currently studying a devotional in the Bible app called Wait and See: Finding Peace in God’s Pauses and Plan’s by Wendy Pope. It is absolutely illuminating and I highly recommend it. It dives into this notion of waiting on God and growing weary, but truly highlights stories and encouraging verses for you to ponder as you continue to wait on the Lord.
We are in this together.
Self-isolation is real, ya’ll. I think the hardest part of going through my career discovery phase was feeling like I was in it alone. I knew, in theory, there were millions of other people out there who were interviewing and also in a career transition period but when you’re in, it feels completely isolating. I felt like everyone else was thriving in their career, I felt like everyone who made the decision to stay at Macy’s was ok.
I was wrong and that wasn’t “me” actually talking. A few months ago, I read a book called Believe Bigger by Marshawn Evans Daniels and she talks about UPGRADING YOUR THINKING. She speaks on breaking up with self-sabotaging behaviors and stinking thinking. “You’ve gotta identify your inner little me, dump “The Rules” and align with what I call Future ME.”
We all have that voice inside of us that that creates illusions based on a false sense of reality. It is up to us to work to fight against that misconception and bring our selves back to the present moment. I realize that part of me feeling so comfortable now is that we are physically all in this together. Most of us are held under the same rules and orders by our states and we physically have to stay home. No one really has a choice, unless you’re an essential worker. It gives a sense of connection that we all have a leveled playing field. This has helped my mental in ways I’m not sure I’m proud of because, at the end of the day, I’ve been capable of everything I’m doing now all along…
We often say that we don’t have enough time in a day to get everything done. Between work, personal time, traveling, family, and friends it can feel like we don’t have enough time to truly pursue our passions. To be honest, time has never been a huge factor for me. My career at Macy’s, though demanding was not overwhelming and while working there I was able to start and build a brand through my blog and I’ve maintained it for the past 9 years. Though the blog content was on and off, I always came back to it. Now that we’re in this COVID-19 world, time has again become an important element. We all have more time now and it’s become an on-going conversation about what to do with it. Since interviewing for me has pretty much come to a screeching halt, I made a conscious effort to actually not focus on job hunting. I instead used that time to pour into myself and my interests. Why now though? Why am I so comfortable doing that now?
It’s a combination of feeling divinely appointed to perform in the way God has been leading me, which has manifested itself in sharing my love and gift for cooking and it’s the community I feel around us all being in this together. Paired with more time and the opportunity to actually focus, I feel I’ve started to share my true gifts without any hesitation or trepidation.
If you’ve gotten this far in the post, I hope you’ll take away that you are built for such a time as this. We are all in this together and you should use this time to do whatever it is you feel is right for you. If that’s sleeping in more, meditating more or relaxing more, then do that! If it’s sharing your gifts with the world more, completing your projects more or working more, do that.
I encourage you to also reflect on why you might be so comfortable now. I know I’m not the only one who’s leaning into passions and that’s reflected in the sheer amount of people going live on Instagram daily to share their gifts and folks churning out content at a rapid rate of their creations in isolation.
We all have a sense of comfort right now and it’s up to us to reflect on the why behind that.
I encourage you to lean in. As my church pastor would say, creation is waiting.