By GG Renee

I was tired of pretending. I was tired of telling myself that I should be happy when I didn’t feel it. I was always waiting for something to hit the fan, for everyone to find out that I was secretly unraveling. But I was stuck in a binding and overpowering routine.

Go to work. Work for 10 hours. Pretend to care about the stock market. Get caught up in the resentment and negative energy that runs rampant in the office.

Go home. Pretend not to mind as my partner relaxes and I feed the kids, help them with homework, then bathe and put them to bed, by myself.

Go to my bank account online. See just enough to pay bills and get a cup of coffee, maybe put gas in the car. Where does it all go? Thankful for the $1 hold that would allow me to get $50 worth of gas without overdrawing my account before my next paycheck hit.

Go to bed. Dread the next day when I'm back at work feeling out of place and far, far away from anything that makes me feel alive and inspired. Stuck completely unaware that I am the only thing in my way.

I was blindly overworking, overspending and overwhelming myself with busyness and emotional clutter, trying to find some kind of fulfillment. I felt sorry for myself, I felt mistreated, but most of all I felt broken. Deep down I knew that I was choosing to accept this way of life and I disliked myself for not having the guts to change it.

Something had to give. I could clearly see what I didn't want, but I had no idea what I did want. There was a soft voice inside, telling me that I had something special to offer the world, but I had no idea what it was. I had kids, bills, obligations and so many emotional hang-ups. Taking a leap of faith with no specific plan seemed reckless. Not everyone gets to live an inspired life, and I decided that I was not one of the lucky ones. I blamed my past. I thought that whatever potential I had was tainted by all the self-destructive things I’d done over the years.

What I really craved most was inner peace and ultimately I decided that I couldn’t live without it, no matter the cost. I wanted to understand myself, what made me tick, what made me feel brave. I wanted to look in the mirror and not feel such disdain. I wanted my internal environment to change. I had no idea that changing my mindset would ultimately change my relationship, my career, my whole life.

If you want to change the experience you are having in life, you have to be brave enough to admit it. Go ahead, change direction. Trust your intuition. You will feel uncertain and embarrassment will rise up, but expect it, see it for what it is and keep going. It doesn’t matter what anyone thinks because their approval can never give you the satisfaction that comes from living a life that is meaningful to you.

GG Renee is an independent author, a creativity coach, a feeler and an overthinker. She writes for women who crave honest dialogue and inspiration for the joys and challenges they face every day. Blog // Twitter // Instagram