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Have I Already Peaked?
Do you ever feel like your best years are behind you?
I know at 31 years of age that might sound like a crazy thing to say, but sometimes I wonder if I’ve already achieved the most I’m ever going to.
Like, I’ve hit the peak and it’s pretty much all downhill from here.
And I don’t mean that in a good way.
What I mean is, do you ever get the feeling that you’re just not quite hitting the mark like you used to?
I mean, I remember when I used to be good at things. When I used to feel like I was regularly achieving awesome goals.
But it’s been a long time since I’ve felt like that.
I remember back in high school. I thought I did fairly OK. Managed to get through TEE (I know, I’m so old these days I studied the TEE back with the dinosaurs LOL!) and got accepted into Uni.
Achieved pretty good results there, got accepted into a post-grad course, worked bloody hard but made it through and wound up with an awesome job at the end of it.
I loved my job and was thrilled when my Uni contacted me to say my thesis had been published in an International Journal.
Around that time, I met the love of my life and we were fairly happy with what we called our “weekend and special occasions” relationship.
I progressed fairly well in my career and felt that I had been quite successful in landing a middle management position by the time I was in my mid-20’s.
Not too long after that, weekend and special occasions turned into “let’s get married and set our home up for a family.”
My life wasn’t exactly what I had pictured, it was actually about 1000 times more awesome than I could have ever imagined.
I could see it mapped out in front of me. My hubby and I with our happy little family, me at home with the kids and maybe working part-time if I felt like it…
…and then I don’t know what happened.
But things didn’t go as I expected.
My husband and I were pretty keen on starting up a small business together and having kids as well. We thought that we could spend some time setting up the business in the lead-up to our wedding and then I could continue to focus on the business part-time while we raised our 2.5 kids (that we thought we’d better get onto having since I was about to hit 30 just after we tied the knot).
It sounds so simple, right?
If you’ve ever tried to start up your own business, or have kids, you’re probably starting to laugh really hard right about now.
It turns out… both those things have been about a million times more challenging than we could have anticipated.
So, I left my job and we started up the business.
I don’t know what we thought would happen. It’s not as if I thought it would be some huge amazing success, but I also didn’t think it would be so bloody hard to get it off the ground either.
It’s meant I’ve had to work about 12 hours a day for the past 2 years straight and struggle to earn an income (you know those people who put up their website blog income reports in their first 3 months… and those crazy stories you hear of “over-night success” yeah well… that’s not how it works).
In between all that, I have worked a casual job to supplement my income too…
So, if you have any illusions about people who are self-employed or have set up their own businesses having spare time, just stop with your crazy day dream. It doesn’t work like that. Those people are me and my husband, and we work 24/7, and when we’re not working, we’re thinking about what we need to do to improve our business (seriously, it takes all my will power to put my phone in another room when my hubby and I finally get the chance to sit down on the couch together for 5 minutes at the end of the day).
And then there was the kids issue. We thought people just had kids when they felt like it.
Apparently, that’s not how that works either.
We got pregnant quickly… and lost that pregnancy about 6 weeks after finding out about it… and then 3 months later… it happened again, and 3 months after that it happened again… and finally we found out that my hubby had a balanced translocation on two of his chromosomes which meant we would have a high risk of miscarriage with each pregnancy.
Eighteen months and 4 miscarriages later and we’re still childless…
And now I’m at the point where I almost do everything in my will power to avoid talking to strangers at functions.
Because, once upon a time, when people used to ask me what I do and if I have kids, I used to be able to say things like “Yes, I’m a manager at blah blah blah and my husband does blah blah blah and yes we’re planning to have kids soon, and we’re just a happy little bundle of joy”
But now when I get asked those questions, I almost don’t even want to answer them, because I get to say things like… “I started my own company… no I’m sure you haven’t ever heard of it… yes, I’m exhausted, no it isn’t fun, yes it’s hard work, yes I regularly ask myself what the hell I’m doing and whether I should give it up, NO I DON’T HAVE KIDS (and silently scream to myself “WHY DO YOU ASK THESE STUPID QUESTIONS!!??”)
I just don’t feel like I can say I’m awesome at anything anymore.
I’m just not ticking the boxes like I used to.
I used to be so confident that I could do anything I wanted, and now I’m just getting hit with challeneges wherever I turn.
It’s like taking 10 steps forward and about 9 back every few days.
It’s not that I never achieve anything… it’s just that for every small step in the direction towards success, it feels like there some new challenge I could never have anticipated appearing out of thin air!
Some days, I feel like I’m up struggle street and there is no paddle to help push me through, and it leads me to ask the question…
“Have I already peaked?”
Am I that person that used to be good at stuff… that girl that peaked in her 20’s …and now I’m generally just failing at life.
People often say that Millennialls are a problem because they’ve been told as kids they “can do anything” and don’t know how to take failure.
Well, I disagree with that. I honestly think the “I can do anything” mentality is the mantra that’s kept me going.
I like to tell myself that I have been through difficult times before. I’ve gotten through it and I know I can do it again. Challenges are what motivates us to achieve bigger and better things.
So if you’re like me, and some days you ask yourself whether you peaked in your 20’s… don’t worry. You didn’t. Better things are coming. They always are. Things always get better. You can do this!
Are you like me? Do you ever doubt yourself and question whether all the best stuff is behind you? Did you feel like you peaked in your 20’s? Do you ever feel like things are 1000 times harder than they used to be? What do you tell yourself to help get you through?
Look forward to hearing your thoughts 🙂
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