Learning the Hard Way

Written by Katharine

There are two kinds of people – those who learn the hard way and those who learn the easy way by taking someone’s advice.  I learn the hard way.  I’ve always learned the hard way because frankly, I’m too stubborn to learn the easy way.  I mean, how fun would that really be anyway?  If you tell me not to do something, chances are, I’m going to do it just to try to prove you wrong.

I waited for the perfect moment.  To change careers, move out of Philadelphia, and travel the world.  I had every excuse in the book not to quit my job and move to California or Chicago.

I can’t quit without having another job lined up.

I can’t leave my friends and family behind.

I can’t…

I can’t…

I can’t…

I learned the hard way that in life, there are no perfect moments.

It took losing my job, failing at entrepreneurship, and fighting a Quarterlife Crisis for me to learn that the ‘perfect moment’ is right now.  If I ever wanted to travel around the world and pursue my passion of opening up my own Bed & Breakfast, it was time to stop making excuses and start taking action.  Dreams don’t become reality unless you get off your ass and do something about it.

By the time you read this, I will have landed at Ruzyne International Airport jet-lagged, tired, hungry, and overwhelmed.

The hardest part is over: getting on that plane to London, enduring a 4 hour layover at Heathrow International, and then boarding my plane to Prague.

I had to travel halfway around the world to learn to stop making excuses for myself.  I had to let go of a foundation I spent years building to learn to stop settling for what feels comfortable and work harder toward achieving authentic happiness.  I had to fail at running a nonprofit organization to learn how to be an effective leader and a successful entrepreneur.  I had to sacrifice certain friendships and relationships – and just hope they survive the distance – to learn how to put myself first.  I had to lose my parents to learn the importance of family.   I had to lose my well-paying, comfortable job to learn that I don’t want the 9-5 Corporate lifestyle.  I had to walk away from everything I knew and loved, at a time when maybe I should have fought harder, to learn how important this truth-seeking journey is going to be.

Truth be told, I cannot believe I did this.  I mean, who packs their bags and moves halfway around the world to a city yet to be seen and a career yet to be tested?  It’s crazy, right?  But as crazy as it is to venture into the unknown with my heart wide open and my arms flailing, it feels effing awesome.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m completely terrified right now, and you have no idea how many anxiety attacks I had as I boarded that plane to London, but there’s just something so… exhilarating… about a clean slate.  Especially when that clean slate takes place in a city where no one knows your name.  It’s like a second chance at life.  A fresh start.  A chance to do things right.

I learned the hard way that sometimes you have to let go of everything in order to reclaim your life.

– See more at: http://www.stratejoy.com/2011/03/learning-the-hard-way/#sthash.4ypExnqH.dpuf


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