6 Tips for a New Beginning
By Filipa Maia, Content Manager & Marketing Data Analyst, Newmanity
Up until two months ago, I used to work as an engineer and a scientist. I got my dream job at the age of 28, right after finishing my PhD. I was happy, felt accomplished, things were going great.
Every once in awhile I would think to myself “Is this it? Is there nothing more to life?” but I always thought I was no different from the rest of the world so I discarded those thoughts and went on with my life.
One day, when I was 30 I decided to try something different. I started writing a story. Now, I had never in my life written a word of fiction and in the beginning, it felt somewhat awkward. I would frequently think to myself:
“Who do I think I am to believe I would be able to write a proper story? I’m a scientist, I’m not supposed to be doing this.”
I didn’t quite know what led me to do it, I just knew that after I started, I could no longer stop. I soon found out I wasn’t quite as happy as I previously thought. Or better yet, that it was possible to be much happier after all. I discovered that words made me happier than numbers and that creativity was much more fun than logical thinking.
I was 32 when I decided to completely change my life. Exactly two years passed between the day I wrote my first words of fiction and the first day after leaving my old “dream” job.
Today, I’ve learned a thing or two about new beginnings. So how exactly did the engineer and scientist turn fiction writer? And how can I help others make their own shifts?
Start with these 6 tips and enjoy the ride!
1. You can become/learn anything
In the fantastic book Mindset, author Carol Dweck writes that we can literally learn anything we set our minds to. I’ll be honest here: maybe some things wouldn’t be worth learning because of the effort it would take. We are all different, and yes, we can learn anything, but some things will always come easier for some people than others. It will be easier if you have an initial aptitude for it - what some people call talent - but even if you don’t, if there is something you really wish you could do, something that lights up a fire within your heart, know that if you put in the work, you can learn to do anything!
2. Big transformation will only happen if you eliminate limiting beliefs
A limiting belief might be something like “I am not suited for...” but it can also be something like “I am not comfortable speaking in public” or “I do not like to be the center of attention”. It can even be “I am not good enough” or “I can’t do that”.
What’s the easiest way to eliminate limiting beliefs? It’s to understand where they come from. Because I can assure you that your limiting beliefs did not come from nowhere. There was something, maybe an event, maybe something someone said to you while you were growing up, maybe there was some perceived failure on your part that made you set aside part of yourself. Whatever it is, there is something that led you to believe untrue stories about yourself..
Get rid of those beliefs and there will be no limits to what you can become.
3. You already have all the answers inside of you
Look no further than inside yourself. Yes, you do have all the answers. Yes, you can find them within you. Stop and sit down. Take your time. Pay attention. Listen. Meditate. Spend time alone. Speak to yourself. Write down your thoughts. Figure it out. It’s all within you already. If you find you have difficulties doing this on your own, you can always ask for help. There are people out there who will help you find these answers faster. Just find someone whose style best fits yours.
4. If you surround yourself with the right influences, you will get there faster
Most people don’t understand the influence that their surroundings have on them. But I’m sure you heard this saying before:
"You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with."
This is true not only for the physical world but also regarding the digital content you consume. Don’t use the excuse that you don’t know any interesting people in real life. There are plenty online, it’s up to you to find the ones you resonate with the most.
You are not the same person you were five years ago, or even one year ago. Now, change doesn’t just happen over years, it happens everyday. Every single day you change a little bit. Today you can be slightly more patient, wise, confident, knowledgeable, stoic, resilient, positive, strong or healthy than you were yesterday. And with time, these small daily changes make a huge difference.
How you change is up to you, you can control it. Just don’t fall into the mistake of thinking the content you consume doesn’t affect how you change. It does. So go and surround yourself with people you would like to be more like, with the people and content that inspire you. Be it physical or digital, you will change in accordance to your surroundings.
5. If you listen to your heart and follow your intuition, you will find the right people to help you through your journey
Be patient. The right people will show up. And trust your gut - it is your second brain after all, containing more that 100 million nervous cells.
Somehow, I found out about Newmanity only a few days after I made the decision to quit my previous job. I fell in love with the project and decided I needed to talk with these people. I did nothing about it, I just waited. Three months went by before I actually reached out and talked to them. Something had been telling me the moment wasn’t right yet. It turns out the moment I finally decided to reach out was the exact moment they needed a content manager. Guess what I wanted to become? Yes, a content manager. It’s what I offered to do without knowing they needed one and it’s now my job.
6. When you’re following your dreams, it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks
Stop worrying about what others will think. When you are living your dreams, it doesn’t matter. They may think that you’re a fool or that you will fail. So what? It’s up to you to prove them wrong. Know, inside yourself, that you have everything you need to make it happen and MAKE IT HAPPEN!
Today, I am still an engineer and I am still a scientist, because I don’t regret becoming any of those things and they will always be a part of who I am. But today I am also a writer. I am also a blogger, a marketer, a teacher, a creative, a storyteller.
Oh, and here’s a bonus tip for you:
7. It’s never too late!
This week I turn 33 and I am starting over again. 2017 was my year of change. I have redefined the person I am. I have a purpose, a few passions, and a gigantic will to impact other people’s lives and the world we live in. For now, I expect to do that through my words and I hope I too can be a positive influence on other people going through big transformations.
Don’t be afraid to go for your new beginning. It’s in YOUR hands. Make 2018 YOUR year of change!