I had a wake up call from my teenage son when he said something so simple, yet so wise — as an entrepreneur at heart, a business owner since the age of 2, a work ethic so strong, and goals a mile long — he said, I would be happy continuing to run and build my landscape company.
Happy. Did you hear that? Happy.
Conversations about the upcoming years after high school graduation has been a hot topic these days in our house. I have caught myself asking our 16 old son, “What do you want to be when you grow up? What college are you thinking about? What is your game-plan? Do you have a game-plan?” As if any teenager truly knows what they are going to do for the rest of their life, nor should they. Life’s opportunities are always unfolding and have a way of showing up in perfect timing.
However, I haven’t been able to let go of his simple, yet wise and powerful response. A wake up call as to how to live life was what I ultimately heard.
The jolt of wisdom was not the fact that he wanted to continue down the path of entrepreneurship, it was because he said he would be happy. Sadly, not many people I know have that as a main game plan for their life. It’s usually not on the long list of expectations that have been passed along in some way.
Expectations are placed on us at such a young age which lead to the societal and cultural expectations we choose to continue to place on ourselves as adults. Anyone that knows me, knows that I love it when the bar is set high, but expectations can also lead us down a path of just going through the motions, unnecessary stress, trying to fit in, people pleasing and perfectionism—ultimately living an unhappy, unfulfilled life.
We are supposed to…
-Get good grades and test scores.
-Attend a prestigious 4 year university.
-Take the safe, stable and predictable career path.
-Get married and raise a family.
-Dislike going to work (for 30 years)…that is what people do, right?
-Choose the “practical, play-it-safe, normal” way of living.
The supposed to’s…go on and on and on in every area of our life.
But who are the one’s saying we are supposed to? Who actually created that long list? Who has set those standards? And why do so many feel the need to follow that way of living?
What if we are supposed to…
-Live a joyful life?
-Do what we truly love to do and what sets our soul on fire?
-Use all our God-given gifts and live our life’s purpose?
-Live a life without trying to fit in or living to please others?
-Be fulfilled with God’s love and His ways?
-Take risks and put ourselves out there?
-Stop following the norm and create our own path?
-Add value to the world by being authentic and true to ourself?
-Be genuinely happy?
What is on your “supposed to” list?
So today, I encourage you to be wise and to make sure living a life of pure joy and happiness is on the top of that list!
And son, if you are reading this…Yes, you are wise at the young age of 16, but do not let this get to your head:) Be on the quest to always learn something new each and every day, continue to take risks and I thank you for my wake up call!
Fitness & Mindset Coach
Mom of 5
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