I wonder what my two suitcases and a few bags have thought about the last year and a half. I can imagine them at first, “Woo! We are getting to go on a trip. You are filling me up to the brim with clothes. This looks like a fun time!”. Then a few months in they started to groan, “Ugh, this constant weight and getting moved around is not fun anymore. Can I just go back to my dark spot in the closet?”

Truth is, I flat out wore the suckers out this past year. I wish I could say it was from traveling the world extensively. Not yet, that’s a future plan! So why you ask did my suitcases become grumbly? Simply put, I made a choice to start a new direction in my life, abandoning all pretense of what it should be, and forged ahead at all cost to pursue my dreams. That had me at times packing up essentials and visiting with friends for periods of time.

I’ll say it was the first time in life that my “baggage” was honestly light and not holding me back from living a rich life. My baggage has taught me a lot in the last year, especially that leading a more simplistic life is not a bad thing. It’s pretty freeing actually and helps you really prioritize things in your life and relationships.

On to the story… There is obviously a lot I won’t be putting in this brief article. You can just wait for the book. [One day!] The nutshell version awaits you today. So in the Fall of 2010, I made a choice to leave my corporate career to move back to Middle Tennessee. It was a family decision and an important one for me and my boys. Upon my return, I had no idea who I was yet and was still acting out of a hurt place of survival from my past experiences. Looking for jobs in a down economy and with no preferred industry background for the region made it difficult to even get interviews. So I moved on to thinking about my entrepreneurial spirit and looking at building some consulting clients while I figured myself out.

In the early Spring of 2011, I had a series of “a-ha” moments which led me to finally forgive the people in my past and myself. Better yet, I was no longer suffering from the crippling illness I had dealt with for 8 years. I was done being a victim from my circumstances and really living a joyful, rich life. It was exciting. I started to build some momentum with new clients and then I discovered I no longer had a burning passion for what I was doing. I really just wanted to work with people to help them find the freedom in life I had. Hmm…this could be challenging.

When September rolled around, I went on a trip to Haiti to build homes in the earthquake ravaged mountains outside of Port-Au-Prince. My life dramatically shifted on that trip. For one, I fell in love with the Haitian people and the beautiful countryside. Secondly, I found my passion! So upon my return I spent months trying to flesh that out properly. It was a lot to sort through my passion. There are grand ideas of having a sustainable business model in Haiti to training and coaching to speaking to …. Well the big vision is extensive.

The problem I encountered with my passion is I was so excited about the long term goals that I just ran down the road as fast as I could. Unfortunately, with little regard to the steps I needed to take to build a proper foundation to support the dream, as well as, jumping at anything that paralleled the dream. In other words, I spent four months spiraling down a path without my plan.

Duh! I know better than this which is exactly why big dreams and excitement need to have boundaries and a strategic plan! The four months were not wasted because I learned a lot about myself, what works, what doesn’t, and where my sweet spot in all of it is. Late February 2012 rolled around and I found I needed to find some clarity outside of the daily noise. I made a decision to take a sabbatical and stay with my parents in SW Florida for a few months.

Coming back home after twenty years has presented its own challenges but the positive changes are so worth it! I have had some space these few weeks to find clarity, lay specific strategies down and move forward with the dream.

The dream then with Avid Seed is what then? I’ll continue to build websites and am partnering with a graphic genius to offer logo design, brand creation and more. Also, the primary focus will be to continue with Transformational and Development Coaching & Speaking. I’ve been working on my own curriculum to aid people through difficult life situations, dream and identity discovery, life changes and career development. So how is this different than consulting a year ago? My focus is on development for individuals. I do consult on occasion for Syngii, LLC when there is a project that fits my niche.

Also, there is a big focus on projects in Haiti. While looking for the right long-term fit for Avid Seed and Haiti, I will continue to take trips throughout the year to serve the communities there while building the right connections. I actually leave for  my next trip in about one week!

I invite you to continue the journey with me by subscribing to the RSS feed or better yet, sign up for email updates [you choose what you want to receive from me]. Life is nothing without relationship! Let’s live it out together!

Dream Big. Think Big. Live Big.

Jen

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