The scary things about Freedom…

The one thing I craved most when working full time in a busy management role was freedom.

Freedom to choose what time I wake up in the morning, freedom to decide what to do with my day , who and what to spend my time on. Freedom to run away to a tropical location at a moments notice. Freedom to work when I want to -to be more creative and develop parts of myself long neglected. Freedom to be utterly, unapologetically and completely myself without having to fit into systems, processes and protocols designed by someone else.

I am 5 weeks into my freedom.

It is not what I expected, it does not match what my dreams told me it would be. The truth is freedom is actually very, very scary. I feel pressure to make something of this precious freedom time, to not waste it lest it be gone in an instant.

I have also come face to face with the parts of myself that crave structure and rules and targets and plans. I am like a small child lost in a shopping mall. I don’t know where my edges are. I am afraid of taking steps in the wrong direction. Freedom has me frozen like a deer in headlights.

Freedom is exposing. I can no longer hide behind my work “persona” I have no “what I do” to share I social situations. I am myself, nothing more and that feels naked and vulnerable.

However, freedom is giving me time and space to put into practice all that I have learnt and healed and blogged about over the last few years. I am making friends with my fear, sitting with it and getting curious about what it has to offer. I am coming to a new understanding of the part of me that likes to push forward and make things happen.

Pushing, doing, ticking off the list, making it happen is a great way to avoid everything I am afraid of. I now understand why letting this part of me be in charge has lead me down dead ends in my life, businesses and career paths that haven’t made me happy despite there success.

I am learning to create my own structure. Structure when self imposed isn’t easy to implement but it becomes even more necessary. I have been afraid to put structure in place, afraid I would get it wrong and dissolve the freedom. Realizing I have the freedom to change anything and everything that doesn’t work has allowed me to gently begin designing my new life…experimenting, playing, feeling what I might like.

I know that what I am creating is the truest reflection of myself, my truth, my purpose, my soul honoring. I know this because it feels so different -softer, gentler, fragile, exposing, terrifying yet I can’t turn back now that I have said yes to freedom. I don’t even want too, as uncomfortable as it feels. I feel it’s growing energy.

Freedom is allowing me to allow myself to be me. To slowly and gently birth a new way of being, to find my own edges, set my own limits. To be more authentic, to honor myself and those around me in new ways.

I am feeling my way into this.

Although I am scared and tentative, I feel a huge sense of gratitude for this freedom and the circumstances that allowed me to create it.

Alongside this a bubbling excitement for what I will discover on the other side of my fear, for what it is to be free.



2 thoughts on “The scary things about Freedom…

  1. Ngaire

    Wonderful Paula. I hear you and have experienced it also. I didn’t call it freedom though…..for me it was “lack of purpose”. It is/was very scary indeed and an unexpected by-product of widowhood. I have learned to manage it to a large degree but it is still there lurking…..ready to pounce! Just another of life’s speedballs. X


    1. joyfulpaula Post author

      Thanks Ngaire, I know well the lack of purpose after becoming a widow that you have mentioned. It can feel quite similar in that the boundaries of your life have changed dramatically and won’t ever be the same. For me this new freedom is quite different but equally as scary. This time I have chosen it and want to engage with it. 🙂



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