You and I make change much more difficult than necessary. We forget the power of stating our intentions. We ignore establishing simple routines to keep us moving and focused on our purpose.

You don’t have to be stuck.

At least that’s what I keep reading. The message comes across in many ways across the internet and in books. You must take the first step and then the next. I’ve written those words myself as advice to readers and anyone who might listen.

I know it’s true. But that doesn’t change the deep sense of aimlessness. Your heart beats faster and your breath becomes shallow and frantic.

I chose to live a life of purpose through writing. The path to that purpose or how to live it doesn’t always come in a neat little package. I follow the breadcrumbs while the fog obliterates the path.

The same feeling can overtake you when you decide to change jobs. The excitement of this new challenge deteriorates the moment you find yourself alone. You sit at an empty desk surrounded by new faces and responsibilities.

You wanted this new position and you worked hard to get here. I know this sinking feeling because I changed jobs more than once during my career.

Every time this moment of stark truth glared at me. Taunting me with, “Now, look what you’ve done.” You may have arrived with credentials and experience, but you don’t know what you don’t know.

I did not change jobs, but I re-focused my work and my life. I don’t regret the decision to wholeheartedly jump into writing. The first few days I felt giddy and excited.

Remember to re-establish confidence, clarity, and purpose.

Then came that sinking feeling that until today, I did not recognize. I did not expect or see it coming. I froze—but did not become frozen. You must always keep going, one step in front of the other to move from stuck to motion.

You must learn to live with risks and the uncertainty of where this path will take you. The words of Benjamin Hardy unlodged my thinking. He offers this advice in an article about the benefits of a morning routine.

It does not matter how successful or unsuccessful you’ve been in the past. Confidence, clarity, and a sense of purpose are all things that need to be established, and re-established, daily.

Wow! Establish and re-establish confidence and clarity, daily. You mean you don’t make this decision and then race full steam ahead? Revisit confidence, clarity, and purpose daily? Besides, Ben reminds us that we have to start with intentions that guide us to the change we seek. You can’t change any aspect of yourself if you remain in the shadow of the past.

When you take on a new job, new routines come along with it. You drive a new route to work. You leave your house at a different time. You face new challenges. You learn the culture, the routines of that new workplace.

Don’t forget about intentions and simple routines.

Why did I miss that making a turn into writing required changes in my routine? After all, I sit at the same desk in the same office. I continue to read and write. I never expected my transition would rumble across the “stuck” cobblestones.

Okay, I see the picture now. While my decision to focus more on writing seemed subtle, it remained a “new job.” Here I am, again. I have this sinking feeling. What have I done? I sit uncomfortable with the new risks and uncertainties. These questions from Benjamin Hardy loom in front of me.

If you’re willing to live with intention, and to make new decisions, there is a cost. That cost is emotional. Are you willing to deal with difficult emotions? Are you willing to move forward into your future without being able to fully predict the outcome?

Yes and Yes. Dealing with the difficult emotions forces me to think about the stories I have to share with you. I don’t have any exceptional or unique experiences, but I can share what I have learned. You may see yourself in my stories. I will encourage you. Share my struggles to build teams that worked together to build collaborative relationships.

My next step? Recognize the new. Face the risks. Live in the uncertainties. No new job, new venture, new relationship, guarantees a journey free of bumps and detours.

No, I must develop new routines, set daily intentions, and embrace a willingness to enjoy the ride. Establish and re-establish confidence, clarity, and purpose.

This will keep you, and me, pressing on.

And always—

Be kind. Be brave. Be you.

Photo: © Kathryn LeRoy