What Elizabeth loves about the challenge of change
Is change something you regard as an adventure to relish, or that you struggle with and worry about? I’d love to say I fall firmly into the first of those two camps, but I know in reality I can tend to edge towards the second.
Of course, change is inevitable, and if we and our lives didn’t change and evolve, they’d be mightily dull. Which is definitely not something you could say about the life Heydayer Elizabeth has had!
I do wonder how many of us would have quite as much appetite for change and adventure as she does. Or be so deliberate in our efforts to make such enormous changes to our lives at such relatively regular intervals.
“I’m a 7-10 year person in relation to my change cycle. Whatever I’m doing, at about 7 years I start to get itchy feet and then it takes me about 2-3 years to relaunch myself with something new.
I love challenges, I’m driven by challenges. I’ve always gone on adventures. In fact, I call my life an adventure. And each adventure - work, whatever it might be - lasts until I’ve perfected it, and once I feel I’m really really good at whatever it is, it doesn’t take long for me to think “is that all there is?… There must be a new challenge out there.’
Whatever I need has a way of arriving
I’ve also always believed that whatever I need comes to me in some way. So when I’m in a dilemma, and I’m thinking it’s all gone pear shaped or got too predictable, something inside of me always reminds me ‘whatever you need has a way of arriving, you just have to be open to it and recognise it when it does’. Sure, there have been times when I’ve missed opportunities, but if I’m even fractionally in that ‘what’s next?’ mindset, then I’ll be very open to change.
In that ‘what’s next?’ mindset I’m very open to change
I was bought up in Perth, Western Australia, and because it’s the most isolated city in the world, most young people are dying to finish their studies and go, what’s called, ‘over East’ which means to Sydney or Melbourne.
I took my ‘over East’ journey a bit further and went to New Zealand where I worked as a temp and then the agency asked me to take over the temp division, which I did. When it was time to go back to Perth, the agency, which was part of a big international group, sent me there with an introduction, and I was appointed as the youngest branch manager the company had ever had. So I was really flying high.
Then, one day, I went home to my mum and dad and said “what would you think if I went to work on Russian cruise ships?” (there was a reason behind that, but that’s another story!)
Thirteen days later, once my mum and dad had picked themselves off the floor, I went off on my adventure. I did that for 3 years, having been told by one of the staff on my first ship that you should only stay that long on the cruise ships because after that you get institutionalised.
So on the dot of 3 years, off I went again!
Every time I make a change it frightens me. But I’m excited too
Every time I make a change it frightens me. I’m excited, because I know I’m ready for change, but every time I actually make it, I’m scared. What am I doing? Who do I think I am? All that sort of stuff goes through my head. But it doesn’t ever stop me.
Very occasionally I feel I’m done with change and I just want a steady predictable life. But that’s only on the odd Sunday when it’s raining outside and I’m lying on the sofa reading a book. I’ve never lost my appetite for adventure or change.
And I always remember what my dad said when I told him about the cruise ships: “But ducky why would you want do to that when you’re doing so well?” To which I replied, ‘Dad, it’s an adventure”. He went quiet for a minute and said ‘Ducky, do it. Adventures are important in life”
What are the biggest changes and adventures you’ve had in your life?
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