Posts Tagged Transplants
I’m writing this while listening to Hall and Oats’ “I can’t go for that”. For some odd reason I love this song-and it always makes me feel a little giddy. Hall and Oats aside, I just came back from visiting my home state (Tennessee) yesterday. I try to go home about once every four months. Besides catching up with my family and friends, and eating my way into oblivion (My BFF is like the Colonel, she does chicken right!), I like to go home because I find that this is the best place to think about my future.
I like to have strategy sessions with myself about my goals. I take notes on whatever comes to mind on a legal pad, then I run back through it and try to make sense of it all. Engaging in one of my strategy sessions in my childhood bedroom is awesome for several reasons:
1. Sometimes you have to look back to move forward.
When I’m in my childhood bedroom, snuggled into my twin bed (don’t laugh!) I remember all of the dreams I had about my future when I was growing up. A child’s dreams are the purest of all. I remember the first career I ever wanted: to be a painter/artist. I’m not really good at drawing, but I still have a love of colors. Thinking about all the things I loved as a child, helps me remember what is important to me in a career.
2. I remember who “Amber” is at the root of it all.
My environment has changed, but the values my parents taught me have not. When I go home and get some old school lessons (and an earful of Southern sayings) from the permanent people in my life, I remember who I am and what I stand for. I’ve found it’s always important to remember these things-especially when you live in the city of selfishness- a la NYC.
3. My 12-year-old self would think I’m pretty cool
I read this article once that said when you feel down about your life, ask yourself: ” How would my 12-year-old self see me?” At home I am totally intune with 12-year-old, Amber. And I think she would think I’m pretty cool. On the days when I feel like I’m not doing enough, I challenge myself to remember this. That 12-year old Amber would think 25-year old Amber rocks!
4. No anxiety
So, sometimes I get really anxious about my present, and my future. I hate that feeling, and it usually crops up when I am making strategic plans. But when I go home, I find I can tackle making an achievable plan.
Next time you get an opportunity to go home (wherever you consider the home of your heart to be) try thinking stategically about your future. It’s a safe space to let your mind wonder, and your dreams soar.
Hope this is helpful :)
And because I love to share:
I always planned on having a blog.
What better time is there to start a blog than moving to a huge new city? Not just any ole’ city. New York City. The concrete jungle were dreams are made of. The place where there is nothing you can’t do. Yes, I always planned to write about it all. So what stopped me?
Fear. I have no trouble admitting it now. I got here, I got stressed, and I got scared. Moving to New York with nothing brings on a tremendous amount of pressure. In my case, I knew all of my nearest and dearest were rooting for me to succeed. But could they handle the truth of the situation I had stepped into? I don’t know. I still don’t know. But, life is short. Sometimes you have to trust yourself to leap and pray to your chosen deity that you will land safely on your feet.
On January 7, 2009, I flew to New York City from Memphis, Tennessee with nothing but two, cheap suitcases stuffed full of a pared-down version of my winter wardrobe, and a dingy pink backpack that held my computer. I did not have a job lined up, and I didn’t really believe in this thing called a “recession”. All I knew is I had to be in N.Y.C. A year later, on January 7, 2010, I was at a photo shoot for a story I had written for a national magazine. I ended the day being serenaded by Fantasia Burino( yes, the one from American Idol). As Fantasia sang, “Summertime” I reflected on how my life changed over the past year. I remember the way I felt on that plane ride in 2009 when I looked out the window as we began our descent. I never look out the window because I get motion sick, but the urge to see my new city was too strong. I had to see those lights. I had to convince myself New York could really be my home.
So why after a year of a half of living in N.Y.C am I finally starting a blog now? Well, it took me awhile to figure out the real story isn’t about my love affair with N.Y.C. The stories I have to tell, the lessons I’ve learned (and am still learning) are about my quest to live my life to the fullest.
To me, living a fabulous life isn’t about material wealth, or who I know, and where they can get me. Living fabulously is about taking charge of your existence, and living each day to the fullest with passion and purpose. The last two years have been pretty rough on the Gen Y set. But somehow, we still don’t lose our optimism. We refuse to let anyone, or anything (that means you recession!) stop our show.
Thank you for joining me on my journey :)