If we truly listen to our energy we have the opportunity to live a more fulfilled life. I didn't realize this until nearly three years ago when I was introduced to the spiritual teachings of Eckhart Tolle. Listening to his 10 part Super Soul Sunday series with Oprah was the first time that I actually allowed myself to sit in silence with my own thoughts and energy without judgement. I was 32 years old.
I've always been one to keep a journal, but up until 32 years old, when I look back they are filled with thoughts and feelings that society, my family and friends put on me. It's like I was living a life full of expectations that were set by anyone but me.
When Eckhart asked me to be still and to focus on being present, at first I had no idea what he was talking about. It was a foreign concept I couldn't grasp. I'd try it and then an item on my to-do list, a fear, stress or random thought would creep into my head. I had SUCH a hard time being present. Anyone else feel this way?
He mentioned this might happen and recommended immersing yourself in nature. At the time I lived very close to the ocean and would go out on morning walks and attempt to become one with the waves and the sun. At first it felt so corny, unnatural and just downright weird. As the day's passed though, it became easier. As I sat with my eyes closed I started to actually feel like I was the stillness. I was a part of nature and all that mattered was what was happening in that very moment.
It was like the weight of societies expectations were lifted from me and I was able to see the light. The epiphany that came to me...
I had just left a company where I had been for 6 years that I absolutely adored to take a career risk at a start-up and I was miserable. This was all wrong. I was not supposed to be feeling this way. I had been given the opportunity of a life time: A drastic salary increase, the chance to build an account management function and team from the ground up, a growing company with the opportunity to make a massive impact. I couldn't accept it. I was embarrassed. I had failed. What was wrong with me? Anyone else would be so grateful for this opportunity. But not me, I was completely and utterly misaligned.
As soon as I started listening to my energy, uncovering my truth I started to realize a few things..
I didn't actually love building out the sales process, documentation or a function from the ground up. What I had enjoyed about my last role was the people and the freedom to tap into their creativity.
A small company was cool, but it wasn't for me. I was at a stage in my career where I wanted to learn from many different perspectives, not just those of the small sales and leadership team I was a part of. I also had visions of starting my own business and I knew I needed to learn from one that was already humming.
When I listened to my truth and my heart I was actually most passionate when I was mentoring, developing and uncovering untapped potential in the women I worked with. This new role didn't allow for me lean into this as much as my last had and I realized I actually wanted to do even more of this than I had been able to at my last company, not less of it.
My energy was telling me this was all wrong and I needed to listen to it. What I've also come to realize over time is when we're desperate for change it rarely happens. I knew I needed to be at peace with my feelings and start making tiny choices to correct the situation I was in.
I fessed up to my husband and my mentor. I was so nervous to tell them both because they had played such a massive role in helping me land this new job and in negotiating the pay bump. I felt like I was letting them down by admitting I was miserable. But when I finally did, it felt so freeing and their reaction was not disappointment, it was pride. They were both proud that I was trusting my intuition and we were all going to figure out the next step.
I updated my LinkedIn page and resume and asked for a few recommendations to beef them up.
I got really clear with what I wanted and didn't want with my next career move. I made a list of the must's and the must not's.
And then.. the message arrived. HubSpot reached out to me. The company I had put up on a pedestal since moving to Boston wanted to talk to me. I was in shock and awe and then in even more shock and awe when they wanted to hire me. They checked all of the boxes, most importantly giving me the opportunity to learn from some of the smartest and most creative people I know today. I knew that by joining HubSpot I was going to be exposed to a whole new level of professional growth and development. HECK, one of their perks is a free book program, I couldn't believe it.
It's at HubSpot where I earned my "Masters Degree in People" and I realized just how important it is to align the business strategy, the org strategy, and the people strategy, because without the people there is no org or business. It's at HubSpot where I learned how passionate I am for helping women thrive in their careers by being 100% authentically themselves.
Long blog post short, trust yourself and your energy. Ask yourself who's truth are you living? Is it your own or the truth of others?
Written By: Tara Ryan, Founder Infinidei