The Stress Of Decision Making: When Facing a Crossroads Leaves You Paralyzed with Fear.

I’ve been feeling really stressed out lately…

Right now, a lot of that stress is coming from my work place. We’ve been so incredibly busy and it feels as though the work is never ending. We’ve been putting in a lot of long hours and pushing ourselves to our creative and energetic limits. The energy of the entire office is reflective of the stress that everyone feels.

I’m literally surrounded by stress… which of course only adds to my own stress. (Being the empath that I am, I tend to become overwhelmed by other peoples feelings).

But, I think I’m starting to recognize that there is another layer of stress coming from somewhere else…

I’ve reached a cross roads in my life and it’s just about time for me to make a decision and choose which direction to go. It’s putting a lot of pressure on me because, like anyone facing a cross roads, I’m afraid of choosing the wrong direction.

I’ve been working at the ad agency for about 8 months now. I took this job knowing that it was mostly going to be a temporary thing – a place where I could grow my experience as a writer.

Right about the time I started working at the agency, I also began my journey as a yoga teacher trainee. My life for the last 8 months has been all about personal growth. It’s been a journey to unlocking the secrets of my potential and transforming myself into the person that I want to be. It’s been a long road, it’s been tough, but it’s been a good one.

Now it’s time to part ways with that road and choose a new road, and therein lies my problem.

I have two paths to choose from: I can take the straighter path that would keep me at the ad agency (my stable job that pays my bills, provides me with health care coverage and keeps me on my toes every single day), Or I can choose the path that veers off in another direction (the path that has me pursuing my goals: teaching yoga and venturing off on my own as a writer).

One path holds the promise of familiarity, stability, and security. The other path holds the potential of helping me fulfill my goals and aspirations (while also probably struggling a little financially).

Then there are other factors at play that contribute to the decision making process. There’s my loving and supportive husband who is completely on board with my desire to fulfill my goals. But I also have to consider our goals as a couple. For instance, we want to buy a house this year, and cutting ties with my financially stable job could potentially put a damper on that goal. How can I sacrifice our goals as a couple to selfishly try and fulfill my own? Choosing to go after my personal goals doesn’t necessarily mean we won’t be able to buy a house, but it could.

Then there’s the fear. And unfortunately I have fear on both ends of the spectrum. The fear that comes with choosing the yoga path is a little more obvious. What if I’m not successful? What if I can’t make enough to pull my own weight financially?

So what are my fears about staying with the ad agency? Well for one thing, I’m pretty unhappy there and I’m afraid that my unhappiness in my job will carry over to the rest of my life. Then of course, there’s the fact that I would be missing out on an opportunity to chase my dreams. And what if the stress of my job leads to health issues (I already have a pre-existing stress related condition, so I’m susceptible, right?)? Plus, I spend so much time at work and I don’t know if that’s something that would ever go away, and that’s not how I want my life to be.

So which path do I choose?

I was talking to my husband the other day about how easy it is to make a decision about something when it’s not you who the decision is about. My husband thinks the answer it clear. He wants me to leave my job. And when he was struggling with a similar situation (regarding stress at work and spending too much time there) I knew that leaving his job was the right decision for him.

And yet, here I am, sitting at my crossroads, paralyzed with fear and stress about choosing the path that will be best for me and my family. I guess all I can do is consider the wise words of my therapist: What if there is no wrong decision? Maybe you just have 2 directions to choose from, each one a right decision for a different reason.

Pfffft. Like that makes it any easier.

2 thoughts on “The Stress Of Decision Making: When Facing a Crossroads Leaves You Paralyzed with Fear.

  1. Hmmm… I would say, as hard as it is, stay at your job until you sign the home buying stuff and have keys in hand. We had one car for the longest time just because we didn’t have money for another loan payment. It turns out if we would’ve bought a car we wouldn’t have been approved for our home loan. Is there a way you can make it work for 6ish more months. Once you have your keys chase that dream 🙂

  2. Thanks! Yeah, I think that’s what I need to do. Just stick it out as long as I can and hopefully everything will come together with buying a house. Then I can make my changes with more peace of mind.

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